Shandrew (shandrew) wrote,
Shandrew
shandrew

Craigslist vs .info TLD: annoyances

I registered shieh.info back when I was working on our wedding website. Flense.com was a bit odd, shieh.[other tlds] were for the most part taken, and I figured reputable people were using .info so it would be fine in the future.

For the most part, it's fine. Yes, there's annoying garbage on many .info domains but you could say the same about .com and any wide-open TLD. I've seen a couple sites with poor email address validators reject it, but only one major problem:

Craigslist


I was helping my parents rent out a duplex they own in Upper Dublin. I wrote up a big description with nice pictures, registered a Craigslist account w/ my @shieh.info email, then tried to post the ad. Every time i tried, it was rejected. I removed links, removed random HTML, and so on, but it would always be rejected. Even a barebones text-only ad was rejected, despite filling out the captcha and completing the phone verification.

I searched through the help forums and discovered that Craigslist often rejects postings that contain *.info. I created a new account under @flense.com and my posts worked. Blah.

More recently, I've been browsing Craigslist for used cars (looking for something with 4+ doors, hatchback or folding rear set, is awesome/fun, cheap to run, reliable, $5000-$20000). After replying to a few ads via email to sale-[randomstring]-[randomnumber]@craigslist.org, I began to notice that strangely, no one replied to any of my messages. Until today I figured people were ignoring me because I was asking too many questions. Finally, I ran a test, tried to email myself through one of these craigslist redirection emails, and found that I never received the email.

Apparently they're also blackholing any email that comes from a @*.info email address. BOOOO. There isn't even a courtesy bounce message to explain why my email's not going through to sellers. Is there a good reason for blackholing *.info? A quick search through my spam folder shows that out of 1446 spam messages, exactly ZERO of them have a From envelope or From: header with a @*.info email address! Sure, craigslist might have a different incoming spam profile, but why use a trivially forgeable header for rejecting messages?

I'll try to pass this along to folks at Craigslist. In the meantime I'll have to remember to switch my email address any time I'm replying to a Craigslist ad. I appreciate their fast old-fashioned text-only interface, but i wish they'd spend more time supporting people who have trouble posting ads. At the time I submitted a couple detailed help requests and received no response. Their system is intentionally non-transparent, so I wasted far too much time trying to figure out why my ad wouldn't post, then wondering why my ad wouldn't show up in search results ("ghosted" in Craigslist help forum terminology). Dumping an entire TLD might make sense for some provider with very limited resources, but a business like Craigslist shouldn't exclude a significant chunk of users for no fault of their own.
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