Why more and more people use mail forms on their website

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Why more and more people use mail forms on their website
Almost every website has a contact button, although I’m not sure if the CIA does (would be cool if they had a call-back button…’Yeah, who’s this? It’s the CIA!’ but I’m sidetracking). A couple of years ago, when you clicked on a contact button, you would have gotten a page with an address, a phone number, some information and an e-mail address. The address and the phone number are still there most of the time, but the e-mail address has been replaced by a form.

That may sound nice, but sometimes it’s a curse. Not all mail forms work well, and most of the time they don’t support attachments. So much for sending them your resume. Annoying as it may be, there really is a good reason for replacing the e-mail address with a form, and that reason is spam. Maybe you’re afraid of spiders, but the ones you really should be afraid of, are the spiders of hackers (not to be confused with those of search engines). These spiders crawl through millions of web pages, with just one mission: gathering e-mail addresses. To spammers, every e-mail address means money, so they’re pretty keen on gathering them. That’s bad, but hey, if there’s no e-mail address to be found on the website, there’s nothing to gather.

This is why more and more people use a form in stead of an address displaying on the page, simply to limit the number of spam e-mails. However, it’s not an airtight system. More advanced bots know how to recognize an e-mail form, fill it out and send it. Also very annoying, but at least they don’t know the address they’re sending it to, so they can’t steal your address and spread it. The way to limit form spam, is to install a protection system like captcha (http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Captcha). This system requires people to enter a code, before being able to submit the form. So now you know, all the terrible annoyances on the web are cause by one thing: spam! Time to become a vegetarian.

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