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Howling mad: House spam filter blocks emails from wolf hunt opponents

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Thousands of emails sent to Minnesota House members by opponents of the state's wolf hunt were blocked by the spam filter on the House email system and were not delivered, the Associated Press reports.

The emails were sent beginning in August via the website of Howling for Wolves, an anti-wolf hunting group. They are finally being delivered now, but it took the group’s leaders months to figure out what was happening and make the appropriate changes, according to MPR News.

The group's founder, Maureen Hackett, told MPR the problem only occurred with the House email system, not the Senate's. The email campaign was launched to try to convince lawmakers to suspend Minnesota's wolf hunting and trapping season, and Hackett said the block caused her group to lose a lot of momentum on the issue.

Hackett said she believes the action was intentional, a charge which House IT director Mike Speiker denies, according to MPR.

The House email system’s spam filter blocks messages from web domains that generate an excessive amount of email traffic, Speiker said, and the host site that Howling for Wolves uses falls into that category.

He added that the block has now been lifted, so Howling for Wolves' emails should now be getting through.

Hackett said her group was not sending an excessive number of emails so they shouldn't have been blocked, according to MPR.

Because the group's email campaign was disrupted, Hackett said wolf hunting opponents will hold assemblies at the state Capitol every day for the rest of the legislative session to encourage lawmakers to suspend the wolf hunting season. There are no bills addressing the wolf hunt currently up for consideration in the Legislature.

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