Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick

Anti-Spam Bill Actually Legalizes Spam

from the missing-the-point-by-quite-some-distance dept

In the post beneath this one, I mentioned that there's yet another anti-spam bill expected to show up in Congress (there are already a few milling around up there). However, in looking at the details, this latest bill isn't so much an "anti-spam" bill as one that practically legalizes the practice of spam. Clearly the "email marketers" spent a lot of time helping create the draft of this bill. First off, it forbids anyone the ability to sue spammers. How could that possibly be good for stopping spam? Next, it goes completely with the "opt-out" ruling on spam, rather than an "opt-in" method. Even worse, it says that each division of a company is considered separate - so you would need to opt-out from every individual division of every company. Next, it says there's nothing wrong with getting spammed if you have a "pre-existing relationship" with a company - though, "pre-existing relationship" isn't defined in the slightest. Of course, most spammers like to pretend they have a pre-existing relationship. A good percentage of the spam I get these days claims that I requested the info. This is a terrible piece of legislation, no matter how you look at it.

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