Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Fifteen Hours o' Fame

AOL's Fifteen Hours of Fame contest is seriously bothering me. This because, being the Type A, obsessive-compulsive attention-whore that I am, I can't possibly pass up any sort of writing contest. At the same time, I can't imagine what I'd actually want to say to 25 million people.

I mean, 25 million people. That's, y'know, a lot of people. With one journal entry, we're talking about one character for every ten thousand people. Here's a "j" for the city of Morro Bay. Don't hog it, people, everyone share.

Come on, it's a daunting proposition. Particularly when I think of the sorts of things I might actually say when given such a soapbox. Would I use the opportunity for personal advancement (here's my headshot and resume -- wouldn't you like to star me in your next movie?) or would I try to make the world a better place? And how the hell would I go about the latter in 2500 characters or less? "Um, guys, let's stop with the street violence, ok? And, um, how about ending hatred and prejudice? And, er, don't forgot to hug your mom, feed your cat, and water your plants. Thank you, and have a nice day." Can't be done.

I had an idea though. A wild, crazy idea (that's so crazy, it just might work.) All I'd need is the participation of every other AOL member. OK, gather close. Listen to this.

[Whispers] We all know the reason people send spam is because it works. A quick google search tells me that targeted email can generate as much as a 15% response rate. What if everyone on AOL agreed -- not because of any TOS thing but just out of the kindness of their hearts -- to never ever ever answer spam. I mean, not even if it offered the best price on Viagra, the kinkiest porn, the cheapest mortgage interest rate, and the most enlarged genitalia ever. Just everyone on AOL agreed that any unsolicted email sent to an AOL address would NEVER generate a response (other than, perhaps, a strongly worded letter to the spammer's postmaster). If all 25 million of us agreed that email advertising sent to AOL would never work, the spammers would know not to waste their time with email to an AOL address. We'd be the internet's first spam-free zone.

Wouldn't make the world a better place, but it would certainly make AOL a better place.

OK, who's with me? Do I hear a "yea"? Do I hear 25 million of them?


andreakingme said...

Yea! I'm with you!


musenla said...

Ehrm, i'm not good at contests. As for spam mail, maybe a better idea would be to spam them back, kinda like these two guys who play pranks on telemarketers. but wait, spamming is illegal. hmm, i guess you're right, thumbing our noses at them would be the best approach.

franj1fla said...

I hate spam too which is why I'm glad I don't use my main AOL program regularly. Oh, excuse, I didn't mean to step into the middle of a ladies gossip session or anything. It's just that I realized that those two rascals below me - muse and andrea - have apparently been hiding this Journal from me. I'll be polite: I'm Frank from On Whining Well. And I really liked this entry, your Geekier Than Andrea and many others. I'm outta space now...

nzforme said...

Hi Frank! I've been poking around at your journal for some time. Glad that you dropped by for a visit. (And I'll hold off on those entries about "female things" for a little while.)

livemagic99 said...

Count me in! I was wondering the same thing as you. Trying to figure out a great inspiring "Mother Theresa" message of hope and healing. Can be done, just have to find just right words... in the meantime, let's not waste time with SPAM. Great idea -- it could really work!