I went to Yahoo to set up a special account for just my creative writing endeavors. I got everything set up and then it asked for my cell number. What?!! It isn’t enough that free web mail providers have my email. Now, they want my cell number on top of that for “security purposes.” Yeah, right.
One that didn’t ask for my cell was GMX http://www.gmx.com/
I read through their terms and it basically says you can’t send/receive anything that looks, smells, or might even be illegal, immoral, or just plain bad without violating the agreement. If you can live with that, it’s a cell-free option.
While I haven’t set it up, it also looks like the service will allow fetching via POP3 and IMAP. Here’s the link to how to set up Thunderbird:
GMX is owned by 1&1 of the webhosting/registration fame. A first glance, GMX looks better than 1&1’s own webmail. Some comments said to beware that GMX is a bait and switch “deal” to the 1&1 paid email server service.
Warning: There are lots of complaints about email accounts being blocked by GMX. If you’re using this mail as a spam dump, that shouldn’t be too big of a deal. If you’re concerned, download your emails with POP3/IMAP.