It seems AOL is blocking email from our servers again.
This is due to AOL allowing it's users to report any mail as SPAM, and AOL blocking NOT the sender, BUT the server it was forwarded from.

So... we are going to have to stop all forwarding of email to AOL accounts.

We are supposedly not supposed to get put on the blacklist with AOL. We are in their Feedback Loop which sends us an email anytime an AOL users reports spam that came from our servers.

Problem is, those users are marking real email as spam also. Not newsletters, not ads, not jokes. I've seen emails which were direct responses to their email.

AOL user sends: Hey, Bob, what time is the meeting on Friday? Maybe we can get lunch?

Bob responds (from this server): It's at 1, so lunch sounds good. I'll meet you at noon out front.

Now, for some unknown reason, the AOL user marks this email as spam. Obviously it is not. But, because they marked it as SPAM, AOL puts it on a list of spam from this server. Over time, when some unknown number of emails are reported, our server gets blocked.

I suspect that AOL has put that 'report' button too close to the delete button. How else can a response email about meeting for lunch be reported?

There have been a few newsletters reported, which one might argue that it's a valid report. However, the newsletters reported had very clear unsubscribe instructions. One click on the unsubscribe link and they are unsubscribed. But, the AOL user is either too lazy, or doesn't trust those links (since they may have heard info from 1999 about spammers using those links to confirm their address).

Whatever the reason, the AOL user is basically blacklisting THEIR OWN DOMAIN from AOL.

Seven Sages will be checking all email accounts on the server and we will need to deactivate ALL forwards to AOL. This means that if you are using your nice professional address like info@, but forwarding it to your dumbname@ address, you have to stop. Either use your available email address like an adult of the 21st Century, or start using your AOL address for all your business.

Sorry for the inconvenience. We've held off on any such ban like this for a while, trying to work it out with AOL. But, it looks like AOL is putting a powerful tool into the hands of web children, and we have to adjust accordingly.

Effective immediately, no email will be forwarded from your domain to an AOL address. You should be able to send to an AOL address (once the blacklist is lifted again), but you cannot have your website address automatically forward to AOL. If this is a problem for you, bring it up with AOL.

Nothing is more expensive than trying to save a buck.