Bob’s Jargon Buster

Rental List (or Acquisition List)

A list of subscribers available for rent or purchase. Usually of people who have requested information on specific topics.

Use of rental lists is highly inadvisable. Often lists can be of poor quality, or may contain email addresses that have been illegally added.

There is a high risk of being labelled as a spammer if recipients were not expecting to receive your emails.

Topic: Email Marketing

Reverse DNS (rDNS)

A method of determining the domain names associated with an IP address. It’s basically the opposite of DNS, which determines the IP address of a domain.

Email systems check to see if the IP address recorded inside the email matched the sender’s email address. If it doesn’t match then it may treat the email as spam.

A reverse DNS check helps filter out spam email sent from someone other than the owner of the domain name.

Topic: Email Marketing, Websites

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

The general term used for techniques that improve the placement of a website in search results page of a search engine (SERP) including Google, Bing, Yahoo and other search engines.

Topic: Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Sender Policy Framework (SPF)

A DNS (Domain Name System) record that specifies which domains or IP addresses are permitted to send email on behalf of the specified domain.

Having an SPF record is adviseable when sending email marketing messages, since it tells receiving email servers that message from your email automation service is permitted.

This is probably something you want to ask you web hosting company to set up for you.

Topic: Email Marketing

Shared IP

An IP address that is shared between many different organisation. For example, if hosting your website on a shared platform you will be given a shared IP address by default. The downside to a shared IP address is that another person can damage the reputation of that address and thereby affect your business. An example of this would be the sending of spam emails from a shared mail service.

Many hosts give the option to purchase a dedicated IP address.

Topic: Email Marketing, Websites

Single Opt-In

When a person signs up for email communications, but isn’t sent a confirmation email to verify their decision to sign up.

A single opt-in means they can be signed up for a list by someone else, and as such is not a recommended way to build a healthy email marketing list.

The recommended approach is to use Double Opt-In.

Topic: Email Marketing

Soft Bounce

The failed delivery of an email due to a temporary issue, like a full mailbox or an unavailable server.

The other type of non-delivery is a ‘hard bounce’.

Topic: Email Marketing

Spam (or Unsolicited Commercial Email)

Email sent to someone who has not opted-in or given permission to be emailed by the sender.

Over 90% of all email sent is classified as spam. Luckily most of it is filtered out automatically!

Topic: Email Marketing


A email address created specifically by organizations trying to combat spam that, when a spammer adds to their mailing list and emails, identifies that sender as a spammer.

Also referred to as a ‘Honeypot’.

Topic: Email Marketing


Software that enables a person to obtain information about another person’s computer activities.


Topic: Computers

Static IP Address

In email marketing, it refers to an IP address from which only you send email.

Static, means that one specific IP Address is permanently allocated to the device sending your email.

Sometime referred to as a Dedicated IP Address.

IP Addresses can also be Dynamic, meaning they are temporarily assigned to devices.

Topic: Email Marketing, Websites

Top-Level Domain (TLD)

A Top-level domain is to the last part of a domain name (the part that follows the “dot”.)  They can be grouped into two classifications: generic and country-specific. Examples of some of the popular top-level domains are .com, .org, .net, .gov, .biz and .edu. Country specific examples are .uk, .il, .nz.

There are restrictions around the use of some domains such as .gov, which is limited to government institutions.

Topic: Websites

Trojan horse

One of the most devious types of malware is a Trojan horse. It is a computer program that claims to rid your computer of malware, but instead it actually introduces viruses onto your device.

The term comes from the a Greek story of the Trojan War, in which the Greeks give a giant wooden horse to their foes, the Trojans, as a peace offering. But the gift is not meant for peace but for war, for inside Greek soldiers lay in wait to kill the unsuspecting Trojans.

Topic: Computers


A piece of computer software that is designed to copying itself and cause harm to the devices it infects, such as corrupting the system or destroying data.

Topic: Email Marketing, Websites


A list of IP addresses that have been approved to deliver email to a recipient.

Whitelists are useful for ensuring email delivery under all circumstances. However, antivirus software may still quarantine infected email messages even if the sender’s IP address is on a whitelist.

Topic: Email Marketing


Worms are a type of computer malware. It is a class of computer virus that aims to copy itself widely across computer networks.

Topic: Computers

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