Monday, January 29, 2024

ALERT ALL SUBSCRIBERS: Blogging Service may be interrupted OR subscription mailing service changed

This is by way of an alert to all those used to receiving my latest blog post via Mailerlite

I was supposed to have written a review of an exhibition by now - but having completed by tax return (have you remembered?), I'm currently tearing my hair out over another issue - and will soon be bald. 

Right now I'm thinking of giving up blogging!! It's all because of new rules which come in on 1st February for bulk emails being sent to gmail.

I'm caught in a really difficult situation with:

  • Google and Yahoo have changed the rules on which emails it will accept for  newsletter emails (for good reasons - it's to reduce the spam on their platforms). This includes blogs if your RSS to email service provides scope for you to use a personalised email address - which mine does. 
  • All "commercial emails" in future must come from an authenticated custom domain
    • which is not helpful when you're trying to distribute an email to a subscriber base for a Google blogspot.domain using a gmail address
    • I've always stuck with gmail as it's caused me very few problems.
    • plus I'm not commercial - everything I write is for free consumption!!!
  • PLUS The Mailerlite deadline for the movement to a new Mailerlite software base (i.e. everything needs to be complete by 31st January)
    • plus it also requires compliance with the new Google rules - because the platform uses personalised email addresses
  • Everything is compounded by having far too many subscribers (for the two sites this affects) to switch to alternative sites without it costing me an absolute arm and a leg - which given this blog generates no income is a problem!
At the moment, I'm becoming more and more despondent because:
  • I apparently need a domain oriented email address to send a subscription email from Mailerlite 
  • but I've always used gmail and blogger - so I neither own the domain I currently use for Making A Mark nor do I have a domain email for it.
I do however have a domain name related to Making A Mark - and am currently looking at options on Namecheap (my domain registrar)

Mailerlite is also saying 
Important: According to requirements from Google and Yahoo, the use of public domains (such as Gmail) as a sender address will no longer be permitted from February, 2024. Please switch to a custom domain.
The thing is the Google requirements are complete gobblydygook (see below) - with no idiots guide

Starting February 1, 2024, all senders who send email to Gmail accounts must meet the requirements in this section.

Important: If you send more than 5,000 messages per day to Gmail accounts, follow the Requirements for sending 5,000 or more messages per day.

  • Set up SPF or DKIM email authentication for your domain.
  • Ensure that sending domains or IPs have valid forward and reverse DNS records, also referred to as PTR records. Learn more
  • Use a TLS connection for transmitting email. For steps to set up TLS in Google Workspace, visit Require a secure connection for email.
  • Keep spam rates reported in Postmaster Tools below 0.10% and avoid ever reaching a spam rate of 0.30% or higher. Learn more about spam rates.
  • Format messages according to the Internet Message Format standard (RFC 5322).
  • Don’t impersonate Gmail From: headers. Gmail will begin using a DMARC quarantine enforcement policy, and impersonating Gmail From: headers might impact your email delivery.
  • If you regularly forward email, including using mailing lists or inbound gateways, add ARC headers to outgoing email. ARC headers indicate the message was forwarded and identify you as the forwarder. Mailing list senders should also add a List-id: header, which specifies the mailing list, to outgoing messages.

So unless I get this sorted - this might be the last blog post sent vis an RSS to email subsciption.

I'll have to go back to firing up Twitter/X as well as Facebook to announce new blog posts!

I'm currently contemplating switching all existing subscribers to follow-it - because despite their awful advertising they do do a good job of getting emails out promptly. Plus they do NOT use personalised emails. 

Or maybe changing platforms completely and making it subscription based (i.e. I can pay for the subscription email service by you paying me to receive the emails!)

For example Substack offers:
  • emails from (name)
  • paid subscriptions for some content
That's the last resort.

Right now it's just very, very depressing.

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