In this article, Christine, Manager of AOL's Postmaster Team explains how AOL calculates IP reputation and what they do with it. Here are some clippings:
clipped from journals.aol.com
Each IP that delivers mail to AOL has a reputation -- roughly good, bad, or somewhere in between. Your reputation is a holistic view of your IP and takes into account a wide variety of factors including -- but not limited to -- spam complaints, not spam reports, spam folder deliveries, and invalid recipients.
IPs with a good reputation will benefit from better inbox delivery than IPs with a bad reputation. Moreover, IPs with a bad reputation will be subject to more temp deferrals, temp blocks, and permanent IP blocks.
The trick to a good IP reputation is to send mail to people who want it.
The standard AOL whitelist offers protection from certain spam filters. Being on the whitelist is in no way a guarantee of inbox delivery, and IPs on the whitelist can still be spam foldered, temp deferred, temp blocked, or permanently blocked if they have a bad reputation.
If your mail is being temp deferred, temp blocked, or your IP has been permanently blocked, you may not be on the whitelist.
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