Email Deliverability

An Update on our Universal Feedback Loop Service

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We recently announced that we are making changes to our Universal Feedback Loop service. We recognize that our announcement raised some discussion in the market, so we wanted to take a moment to address the discourse.

We introduced our platform in 2006 as a unique opportunity to enable mailbox providers to provide complaint information to senders. We have always relished the opportunity to facilitate one of the great collaborations in deliverability – the exchange of complaint reports for improving email practices, and ultimately to improve the inbox experience for the common customer – the email recipient. As the intermediary in this market, we love this ability to support good email practices by providing such data to senders.

For over 15 years we have invested in this platform, which currently has 28 global mailbox partners as well as included support for DKIM domain keyed Feedback Loops, and always as a free service to senders.

Through the years the market responded, and with steady growth, we are now managing subscriptions across 100’s of thousands of sending IPs, which demands significant daily outbound SMTP volume. That success comes with growing operational costs – it takes human and system resources to maintain and operate this platform that we love.

At a crossroads with the increased demand, we were quickly approaching a point where providing this service to the market for free was no longer offset by additional services that we could offer around it. We were faced with the prospect of retiring the product or asking those who find the data valuable to help support the costs.

Large feedback operators such as Gmail have opted to provide aggregate complaint data with no forensics, while others like Microsoft and Yahoo offer a limited and full forensic feedback service feeds. Validity appreciates the merits of both approaches and as such, we are aiming to offer our subscribers the option of aggregate and/or forensic data.

Which brings us to the changes announced that included enhanced security and reporting improvements, a separation of aggregate and forensic reporting, and service fees related to forensic report delivery. This includes:

Universal Feedback Loop Free Version:

  • Enhanced login and security support via MyValidity
  • Aggregated complaint data across more than 25 mailbox providers
  • Trend reports to view aggregated complaint data for up to 120 days

Universal Feedback Loop Paid Version:

  • All features of free version
  • Individualized reports in the Abuse Reporting Format (ARF) of complaint data

This change allows us to continue to offer this unique data set to the market AND continue to scale the service with additional mailbox providers, invest in future enhancements to the product, support the growing sender user base, all while keeping it fresh and valuable to the Email community.

The price of the ARF service will be $1,500 US annually for up to 100,000 complaints. Current Everest and Sender Certification clients who are also registered for our Universal Feedback Loop service will continue to receive message-level complaints. We will also offer free service for Not-for-Profit companies via our Validity Cares program.

Further communication with our current subscribers is planned leading up to the September 21st launch of the product. More information with specifics on pricing and other details and how subscribers can upgrade their account will be in those emails.