2015-01-08 Clean Email Day

When I learned about Email, I started using Emacs and soon switched from Elm to Gnus. When Spam started to be a heavy burden, I switched to Gmail. I didn’t want to run a spam filter. I didn’t want to run a mail server. I wanted to read my mail both at home and in the office.

With the NSA snooping scandals made public by Edward Snowden and other whistleblowers (thank you!) I decided I was going to invest some time and energy into running my own mail server. I set up a Raspberry Pi with Dovecot and used Fetchmail to get my gnu.org and gmail.com mail, and to collect mail from all the other hosts I am running. I still didn’t want to run a spam filter. It’s taking me a lot of time. Maintaining the server. All the things I had to learn. All the spam I have to delete. I hate it.

So. I decided to give Gmail another try. I went to my Google Account page and used their Google Takeout page to download my stuff. I had about 2.2GB of mails to download the next day. I downloaded this archive and then I trashed it all on the server. Then I went to the trash and deleted it again. And I deleted all my contacts and all my contact groups.

A fresh start! ☭

I can still occasionally download and delete all my mails. I feel better about this because snooping agents won’t be able to look at every single thing I ever did. Or maybe they still can, if they keep a copy of the entire Internet traffic in Utah, but this at least I cannot change as long as I keep using unencrypted mail. And even if I do, Social network analysis will still work. For those occasions where I feel like annoying the agents, I can still send encrypted mail via Gmail using my Gnus setup.



Please make sure you contribute only your own work, or work licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. Note: in order to facilitate peer review and fight vandalism, we will store your IP number for a number of days. See Privacy Policy for more information. See Info for text formatting rules. You can edit the comment page if you need to fix typos. You can subscribe to new comments by email without leaving a comment.

To save this page you must answer this question:

Just say HELLO