Court Tells Spammer That It's Not Illegal For An ISP To Filter Its Emails

from the in-no-uncertain-terms dept

If the name e360 sounds familiar to you, it may be because it was the company that sued Spamhaus for including it in its spam filter list. e360 insists it's not a spammer and anyone filtering its messages is somehow infringing on its rights. Of course, there seems to be ample evidence that e360 has been spamming, and the company has been sued directly as well. e360's latest lawsuit was against Comcast for filtering its emails, but as Slashdot lets us know, a judge has tossed that suit out of court while also declaring in no uncertain terms that e360 is a spammer.
Plaintiff e360Insight, LLC is a marketer. It refers to itself as an Internet marketing company. Some, perhaps even a majority of people in this country, would call it a spammer.
The key in this case was that the judge relied on section 230 of the CDA -- a section of the law that we often talk about for shielding service providers against the actions of its users. In this case, it's a different part of section 230, which also shields ISPs from liability for "good faith" efforts to block objectionable content -- and then the court says that it's clear that Congress and the courts have determined that spam is objectionable content.

This isn't the first time we've seen cases like this. A few years back a series of courts all ruled against a spam company which claimed that it had followed the "rules" in CAN SPAM, so filtering its spam was illegal. It's nice to see the courts recognize that's simply not true.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 11th, 2008 @ 6:11pm

    Let me be the first to say "LOL, e360!"

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 11th, 2008 @ 8:18pm

    us 1
    spammers 0

    Keep it up!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    erik, Apr 11th, 2008 @ 11:28pm

    pwnt good sir, pwnt

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 12th, 2008 @ 12:57am

    "while also declaring in no uncertain terms that e360 is a spammer.

    Plaintiff e360Insight, LLC is a marketer. It refers to itself as an Internet marketing company. Some, perhaps even a majority of people in this country, would call it a spammer. "

    You really think that's in "no uncertain terms"?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 12th, 2008 @ 3:44am

    Re:

    Um, yes?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    I'm Not a Bubba, Apr 12th, 2008 @ 5:29am

    Some and Perhaps

    Um, no!

    Last time I checked, "some" and "perhaps" the two operative words here were in no way certain!

    Let's put this to the test...

    I would prefer "some" of the gold.
    I would prefer "all" of the gold. ding-ding-ding!

    I am certain I want "all" not "some" of hte gold.


    Let's try this again shall we? :)

    "perhaps" I shall eat a pile of dog poop.

    Um, I am dammed "certain" that I will not eat a pile of dog poop. ding-ding-ding!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 12th, 2008 @ 7:15am

    Re: Some and Perhaps

    Hello 360 shill,

    Take your english class down the hall to someone who cares.
    They lost, end of story

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    Andy, Apr 12th, 2008 @ 11:26am

    English Class

    Hey I'm Not a Bubba,

    "Perhaps" you and e360 "shall" sit down together and eat "some," if not "all" of that pile of dog poop.

    SPAM is bad on many levels. Regardless of semantics, the court was absolutely right in its judgement.

    Are you a lawyer? That was a lame lawyer comment if I ever saw one. "Your Honor, the car only *slightly* killed the pedestrian."

    Consider changing your handle to, "I Am Definitely a Bubba."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 12th, 2008 @ 2:52pm

    LOL at bubba

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Typical Consumer Sick of Stupid Spammers, Apr 12th, 2008 @ 5:53pm

    Judge's actions are equivalent to slapping the bloodsucking mosquito....

    *****SPLAT*****

    Hey David Linhardt - sue, like you always do.
    Vexatous litigant.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    dualboot, Apr 12th, 2008 @ 8:07pm

    GOOD!

    So much spam still gets through, that it's nice the courts are sticking up for spam filtering. I'm one of those who forwards emails regularly to the spam department at my isp and email providers because it makes me angry that if I don't log in for a few days, when I do finally log back in, I have 100 emails, and only about 7-8 are from people or companies that I even know or care about. So e360... I'm glad you lost.

    About the majority/all statement... a judge could not possibly make the statement that 'all' people view it as spam... It would be an extremely broad generalization since he can't read the minds of all Americans to find out what we all think, and he's obviously not going to survey us all just to make sure. I think the original author was pretty accurate when they said "in no uncertain terms."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    Kim Berry - Programmers Guild, Apr 12th, 2008 @ 10:30pm

    My ISP filter is UNREASONABLE

    My ISP blocks any OUTGOING email that I try to send that contains the word "LOTTERY." It wasted about an hour with tech support to determine why the email was stuck in the outbox.

    The outcome? "Too Bad, we've determined that emails that contain the word LOTTERY have a higher probability of being spam. My ISP is www.surewest.net

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    James, Apr 13th, 2008 @ 1:04am

    Spammers should be stoned...

    .......with ROCKS!! e360 burn in hell w/the rest of those spamming losers you piece of S**T!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    identicon
    Mark, Apr 13th, 2008 @ 2:17am

    The last entry on e360insight's web page was last August, and is rather revealing of their attitude:


    News

    08.30.07
    E360 Wins Appeal Against Global Vigilante Organization Spamhaus

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
    identicon
    Elepski, Apr 13th, 2008 @ 2:23am

    Ok.. it may or may not be spam...

    but.. if they send enough mail to get noticed by a service providers NOC or NCC... and affect the other users... they are sooo going to get addressed.. I know this for a fact.. I have to deal with "marketers" like this all the time... If they are sooooo legit... then get your own servers.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
    identicon
    Old Bastard, Apr 13th, 2008 @ 5:00am

    us 1
    spammers 45,456,720,315

    Still though. Its a start

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    identicon
    Thoughtful Citizen, Apr 13th, 2008 @ 10:13am

    But...

    I wondering if this is such a good thing, im not knocking getting rid of spammers i hate them also but in the broader spectrum along the laws that got there case dismissed doesn't it allow any ISP to filter any of your emails? that they deem of objectionable content even though it may not be to you? newsletters you may signed up for or your friend sending you an email? im just wondering, i may be wrong and ill appreciate it if someone will point out how i am.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    identicon
    Keith, Apr 13th, 2008 @ 3:04pm

    Their website.

    You should check out the News on e360's website. They tell a very different story.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
    identicon
    kjpweb, Apr 13th, 2008 @ 7:40pm

    Re: Their website.

    Well - you should, too!
    They are referring to a judgment in July 07.
    The case here is the judiscial follow up and was decided
    in April 08.
    e360's just blowing a smokescreen over the reality of them having lost.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
    identicon
    Grady, Apr 13th, 2008 @ 8:48pm

    Re: English Class

    Hate to break it to you Andy, but "Bubba" and the AC weren't referring to the case directly. They were referring to Mike's use of "while also declaring in no uncertain terms that e360 is a spammer." When in actuality, the ruling he quoted does leave wiggle room. Maybe you need to take an English class regarding literature and the flow thereof.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
    identicon
    Kim Berry - Programmers Guild, Apr 13th, 2008 @ 10:40pm

    Where does this leave free speech rights of non-spammers?

    I have one-year contract with my ISP, and since my email address is tied to my ISP for many uses, it is not convenient to switch. And and since ISPs don't advertise the list of words they block, how can I make a choice?

    I cannot send emails that contain the word LOTTERY. There is no claim that I am spamming - I'm involved in political issue on the H-1B LOTTERY - and I can't even send email to media and Congress that contains that phrase.

    REAL SPAMMERS would use LOTERY, L(zero)TTERY, or such anyway, so the only harm is to legit users.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    victor louis, Apr 14th, 2008 @ 12:22am

    Free Anti spam webinar, Why Today’s Spam Filters Fail

    Spam isn’t just a big nuisance; it’s big business as well. So why is spam persisting?
    Ferris Research estimates that spam will cost $140 billion worldwide in 2008, of which $42 billion will be in the United States alone. If you compare these numbers with Ferris’s 2007 estimates of $100 billion and $35 billion, you’ll see that the cost of spam has increased substantially over 12 months.

    Register for a complimentary Webinar conducted by Abaca and Ferris research to know more about how you can stop this nuisance. To register please click the link below:
    http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=LPFKkdkFwOYltiQZtM_2bttw_3d_3d

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 14th, 2008 @ 6:37am

    Re: Free Anti spam webinar, Why Today�s Spam Filters Fail

    A spammer spamming a blog about spam.

    Ha ha

    very funny

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    identicon
    Zirbes, Apr 14th, 2008 @ 6:55am

    Objectionable Content?

    Am I the only one who thinks that this part of section 230 of the CDA which "shields ISPs from liability for 'good faith' efforts to block objectionable content" is extremely DANGEROUS?

    I mean, who gets to decide what is and what is not "objectionable" and therefore blockable?

    I believe that giving ISPs free rights of censorship is not in the best interest of the people and can lead to serious damage to our freedom of speech rights.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  25.  
    identicon
    Hoeppner, Apr 14th, 2008 @ 7:05am

    :waits for ISPs to use this precedent for any type of filtering: (including the precious P2P type stuff)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    sitco, Jun 17th, 2008 @ 12:45pm

    where is freedom of speech?

    I know the usa was one big fake, when They cant allow people to advertise via email marketing. I guest China is a better country to live in. I beleive if most of you people have your way, you will ban television advertising.
    Long live bulk mail advertising.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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