Complying With CAN SPAM Doesn't Mean It's Illegal To Filter Spam

from the repeat-after-me... dept

Spammers are getting increasingly brazen. There have been a number of claims like this, but not too many actually go to court. It appears the case here is actually an appeal of a case that was quickly dismissed last year, where a dating site that was spamming students at the University of Texas claims that it’s illegal for the University to filter out their emails because they comply with the (aptly named, yes?) CAN SPAM. In other words, the spammers are interpreting CAN SPAM way beyond its intended purposes. They’re saying that the law doesn’t just set out the rules for making spam legal, but also then makes it illegal to filter out any emails that comply with the law. That is clearly not the intention of the law, but it’s not clear that point has been made in this case. A judge is quoted as saying that he doesn’t see how a little spam is any kind of “serious threat” to the university. Of course, there is no “serious threat” test to CAN SPAM. Anyone is free to filter out whatever messages they want. The law is just there to set up the (weak, many say) limits to sending out commercial emails — not to set rules for filtering emails.

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