Destroy those old love letters (emails) to your ex
March 9, 2004 6:51 PM   Subscribe

Destroy those old love letters (emails) to your ex Big String is a new service that use HTML email to allow you to delete, alter or recall sent emails. Amazing that it took this long for someone to come up with this. Which email do you wish you could have recalled? Bet this kid wishes he had something like this.
posted by wsfinkel (20 comments total)
Oh man, that guy Tripplehorn is vile!
posted by josh at 7:09 PM on March 9, 2004

In the end, all I can say is that people love me and people hate you.

Gol darn it, I just love unscripted rage. I really liked the second link, wsfinkel, but the first one is dangerously lame. "Amazing that it took this long?" The only thing amazing is that you apparently haven't heard of telnet, which is decades old.
posted by squirrel at 7:11 PM on March 9, 2004

If there are mefites finding Tripplehorn for the first time, allow me to direct them thusly ....
posted by blueshammer at 7:14 PM on March 9, 2004

and if I print it out they can recall that too? MAGIC!
posted by machaus at 7:21 PM on March 9, 2004

Uhh, how exactly is this supposed to work? If I download something to my hard drive, how can it be erased or changed by your machine without my permission or your illegal entry into my system?

And since e-mails can be considered evidence in court (right?), and therefore being able to change them or erase them could hamper an investigation, won't this service just be closed down the first time someone gets caught using it to hide his paper trail?
posted by Hildago at 7:39 PM on March 9, 2004

My guess is that it's a html layers thing with the body of the mail being left on the server. There's probably a few corporate e-mail servers that would just strip this down to nothing.
posted by Flat Feet Pete at 7:45 PM on March 9, 2004

Most likely they use an internal frame in an HTML email. The contents of the frame will be read from their server, giving them control over it. Clearly it won't stop people from copying the data out or printing it or whatever. They *might* use some plugin or something to disable copying/printing, etc, but that would be very difficult (and there's always a loophole).
posted by whatnotever at 7:45 PM on March 9, 2004

Ahh, so people are essentially being sent a link to a remotely-hosted web page?

Well, ok.. I guess that's fine.
posted by Hildago at 7:48 PM on March 9, 2004

and if I print it out they can recall that too? MAGIC!
Or copy-and-paste it, or save-as, or forward it, or receive it as plain text or ...
posted by dg at 7:54 PM on March 9, 2004

Is anyone using this?

I'm assuming it's all bunches of links to their site of your email and not a pop/imap email in your software.
posted by filmgeek at 8:22 PM on March 9, 2004

Lots of the spam I get consists of just an html frame that would load from a remote server if I let it. So it's not a new technique.
posted by hattifattener at 8:46 PM on March 9, 2004

For your information, is a highly respected, non-commercial website community which receives over 60,000 hits per month. It would be our honor to treat you with respect as this gentlemen apparently has not.

Wow, 60k whole hits!!
posted by delmoi at 9:02 PM on March 9, 2004

er, if you're going to go through the trouble and expense of signing up for something like this, shouldn't you also be smart enough to know better than to send inconsiderate and potentially embarassing email in the first place?

Just wonderin'.
posted by clevershark at 9:08 PM on March 9, 2004

I don't know. If I had the foresight to sign up for this service, wouldn't i have the foresight to not send emails I'd regret?
posted by ODiV at 9:40 PM on March 9, 2004

If it can be seen and/or heard, it can be saved. Smelled, touched and tasted are only a matter of time.
posted by aeschenkarnos at 9:41 PM on March 9, 2004

If it's important to you that your email actually be readable by all the people you contact, this is far from perfect, I'd say.

Firstly, many spam and privacy control filter will stop this mail being usable as they often block external content references (a common spam technique for email confirmation).

Being Iframe based means it will be limited in the number of email clients it will work in - for example, it certainly won't work in Pine, probably won't work in Pegasus, and may not work in many other non-MS email clients.

People who have no HTTP access (very common in large organisation who worry about their employees internet usage) will not be able to read your email.

I think the idea is stupid really.
posted by sycophant at 10:08 PM on March 9, 2004

HTML mail is a stupid idea anyway. I always tell my mail client to convert to plain text.
posted by salmacis at 12:20 AM on March 10, 2004

HTML is the future, Choose your FONTS wisely!
posted by yeahyeahyeahwhoo at 6:50 AM on March 10, 2004

Wow, 60k whole hits!!

How many hits does your site get, again?
posted by mkultra at 8:09 AM on March 10, 2004

The only thing amazing is that you apparently haven't heard of telnet, which is decades old.

Huh? I'm confused. How does telnet come into the picture here? My gopher server doesn't have any info on it.
posted by mkultra at 8:11 AM on March 10, 2004

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