A thing that lurks in the Usenet. Destroyer of spam, eater of junk and friend of users.

CancelMoose (actually, these days, a program called AutoMoose) doesn't send cancel messages to the Usenet. Instead, it sends "notices" to alt.nocem.misc. These notices (that can also be generated by spam warriors) will then be read by NoCeM or similiar program that will hide the offending articles from the user.

See also: http://www.cm.org/

Ah, the old days. When a couple of bored, idealistic guys could cancel a significant portion of the spam on the usenet. It took all of two years from the time when the moose first cancelled until the day when all of the spam fighters vacated, and the revolution was over. The spammers had won - simply by overwhelming numbers. The usenet, except in moderated groups, would forever be a gigantic, rude, badly written, advertisement. Something wonderful and fragile and interesting was lost. In a generation, no one will remember it.

Oh, they floated a rumor that it was some Finnish hacker with a lot of "j"'s in their name. I think that one even made the New York Times. When I finally found out who the moose was, it was by spotting a yellow "Moose crossing" roadsign in a machine room. But I will take the rest of the secret to my grave.

cancelbot = C = candygrammar

Cancelmoose[tm] /kan'sel-moos/

[Usenet] The archetype and model of all good spam-fighters. Once upon a time, the 'Moose would send out spam-cancels and then post notice anonymously to news.admin.policy, news.admin.misc, and alt.current-events.net-abuse. The 'Moose stepped to the fore on its own initiative, at a time (mid-1994) when spam-cancels were irregular and disorganized, and behaved altogether admirably - fair, even-handed, and quick to respond to comments and criticism, all without self-aggrandizement or martyrdom. Cancelmoose[tm] quickly gained near-unanimous support from the readership of all three above-mentioned groups.

Nobody knows who Cancelmoose[tm] really is, and there aren't even any good rumors. However, the 'Moose now has an e-mail address (moose@cm.org) and a web site (http://www.cm.org.)

By early 1995, others had stepped into the spam-cancel business, and appeared to be comporting themselves well, after the 'Moose's manner. The 'Moose has now gotten out of the business, and is more interested in ending spam (and cancels) entirely.

--The Jargon File version 4.3.1, ed. ESR, autonoded by rescdsk.

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