I just got a blog comment from Richard in the Netherlands.
I have not received any “hello – how are you” spam since 19-09-2010 / 20:28 CET.
That sent me to my spam inbox. The last “hello – how are you” spam was received here Sunday at 2:18 PM EDT (1818 UTC or 2018 CET), ten minutes before Richard’s stopped. Up until that point they had been coming in sporadically sometimes as often as a few a minute other times once every 10-15 minutes.
If you’ve been getting these spam emails would you please check and let me know when yours stopped? I doubt it will unlock any secrets, but it would be interesting to see how tightly controlled this army of spammers was.
Meanwhile I don’t know any more than earlier. This whole thing is a puzzle. We may never know.