Anti-Spammers Don't Need CAN-SPAM

from the other-pink-meat dept

While the CAN-SPAM act was meant to stop spam, it obviously hasn’t yet. Although it’s pretty easy to point out some of CAN-SPAM’s flaws, it’s perhaps better that some anti-spam activists are actually taking spammers to court — though mostly citing pre-existing laws regarding false advertising or deception. Armed with these older and easier-to-understand laws, the Informal Coalition of Private Anti-spam Litigants (ICPAL) and the Institute for Spam and Internet Public Policy (ISIPP) have helped some businesses and devout anti-spammers take some sleazy mass emailers to court and win a few sizable monetary judgments. Still, the strategy for these anti-spammers is to remain informal but organized, so that spammers can’t retaliate. However, these anti-spammers also say they’re not in it for the money, and some have refused to settle out of court on principle. Given that some of the spammers are hard to actually find, much less extract damages from, it looks like these vigilante organizations may remain small and informal until perhaps some bounties are put out on spammers heads.

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Comments on “Anti-Spammers Don't Need CAN-SPAM”

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1 Comment
Paul says:

But what about the collateral damage...

Nice idea to chase down the “spammers”, but there are 3 flaws:

1. this takes an inordinate amount of time and energy, while leaving all of us (particularly our children) vulnerable to the hassles and hazards of the spam

2. there are more of “them” than the fighters, and more of “them” are popping up each day. They (the spammers) are much more organized than some people imagine.

3. Finally, who gets to say who is a spammer and who is not? We have not accurately defined what a “spammer” is in the U.S., much less dealt with how to reconcile the definitions created by multiple nations in the world. Be careful – you, yourself, could be labeled a “spammer” because you sent a long-lost friend a note about a new business you are starting to protect children. Mr. McCarthy may be heading you way….

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