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I’d actually consider running a screensaver

Lycos has released a screensaver that combats spam. It just tries to repeatedly download the web content of known spammers in hopes of driving up their bandwidth costs.

I am famously opposed to screen savers, but…

And wouldn’t you know it, I haven’t been able to download it, because their boyband-loving website requires Flash. Why do I need Flash in order to click on a link that says “Download now?” This might be a bigger mystery than why Paris Hilton is famous.

And yes, I could install Flash and Flashblock but it’s more interesting to pontificate about why Flash is unnecessary for pages that are supposed to exist for the sole purpose of downloading a screensaver that tries to make the world a better place.

So this is my longwinded way of saying I like the idea, questionably legal though it may be, and I can say the same for its effectiveness, but I haven’t tried it.

One word of advice: Don’t run it at work. Set it up at home and let your otherwise oft-idle broadband connection do the work instead of slurping down your employer’s bandwidth. Unless, of course, the guy who signs the check every month for the T1 line is as sick and tired of spam as you are and agrees to it…

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