I have received e-mail from several readers this month who were frustrated in their attempts to send questions to me by clicking on the link firstname.lastname@example.org found at several places on this site. Clicking on that link should bring up your default mail program with the proper address already entered, and from there it's just a matter of typing your question, adding a bit of flattery to grease the rusty wheels of my conscience, hitting "Send," and Bob's your uncle.
But some users report that when they click on that email@example.com link, instead of bringing up the proper mail program, their browser takes them to the Hotmail website, where they are encouraged (if that's the right word) to register for Hotmail in order to send me their questions. Several users that I know of, understandably reluctant to disclose the sort of personal information demanded by Hotmail (a Microsoft minion, natch) in order to "register" (for a lifetime of spam, no doubt), have come close to abandoning their efforts to communicate with me, and have wondered, politely, why I would enter some sort of partnership with such weasels.
To which I say: It will be a cold day in Hades before I cast my lot with that vulgarian swine Bill Gates. I am as shocked by this horrifying glitch as anyone. I'm not sure what's causing it, but I suspect that one of the later versions of Windows comes with Hotmail hardwired as the default mailer. (Don't ask me. I'm still using a 200mHz Pentium running (just barely) Windows 98.) Presuming this is the case, and presuming that one is using some flavor of MS Internet Exploder, one can probably circumvent this obnoxious imposition by clicking on Tools, then Internet Options, then Programs, and making certain that one's preferred mail program is entered in the little box thereon.
If that doesn't work, I suggest that we all march on Redmond and whack the little twerp.
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