I guess it's too much to hope for that there's a Poem Fairy.
December 22, 2011 2:17 AM Subscribe
I got weird spam (?) consisting of an 8th-century Chinese poem. What's up with that?
posted by Perodicticus potto to Computers & Internet (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Early this morning, I got an e-mail (which got past my spam filter) from snsbay.com, which seems to be some kind of Chinese auction site. Here are the full headers and text of the message:
From email@example.com Thu Dec 22 02:58:04 2011
X-Apparently-To: [my address] via 220.127.116.11; Thu, 22 Dec 2011 03:54:07 +0000
Received-SPF: none (domain of mail.snsbay.com does not designate permitted sender hosts)
Authentication-Results: mta1016.bt.mail.ird.yahoo.com from=snsbay.com; domainkeys=neutral (no sig); from=snsbay.com; dkim=neutral (no sig)
Received: from 127.0.0.1 (EHLO mail.snsbay.com) (18.104.22.168)
by mta1016.bt.mail.ird.yahoo.com with SMTP; Thu, 22 Dec 2011 03:54:07 +0000
Received: by mail.snsbay.com (Postfix, from userid 505)
id 2215B20C0888; Wed, 21 Dec 2011 18:58:04 -0800 (PST)
To: [my address]
Subject: Poem: Moonlight night
Content-Type: multipart/alternative; boundary="PHP-alt-03d2c2e002258f3641503068cdeec8d6"
Date: Wed, 21 Dec 2011 18:58:04 -0800 (PST)
[SNSbay logo] S & S bay http://www.snsbay.com
Message To Supplier
There will be moon tonight
In the womens rooms
she is gazing at it alone.
I pity my little children;
They do not know yet
In the sweet mists
her cloud-like hair is damp;
In the clear shining
her jade-white arms are cold.
When shall we two lean beside
the filmy curtain
With moonlight on us both
and the tear-stains dry?
Team Member: S&S bay
IP Address: 192.168.1.72
Country: United States2>
A few points:
1. That is a genuine poem by a genuine poet, though it looks like an amateur translation.
2. I ran the Chinese characters through Google Translate, and they do seem to be the actual poem, although Google had some hilarious interpretations of some of the characters.
3. As far as I can tell from the headers, the e-mail really did come from snsbay.com. But I'm no expert.
4. The link that says it goes to snsbay.com really does go there. There aren't any other links embedded in the message that I can see.
5. IANA says the IP address at the bottom belongs to "private address space."
6. A quick Google shows that this snsbay address seems to have been sending out Chinese poems via e-mail and Usenet for a while now, but I haven't found any explanation of why.
I've got plenty of spam e-mails before with random text or literary quotations, but they usually include a sales pitch for Viagra or links to dodgy sites as well. There really doesn't seem to be anything like that here. What did the spammer get out of sending this to me? Should I be doing a virus scan right now?
Any ideas are welcome!