Anti-spam Law Talks Tough, Accomplishes Little

Feb 03, 2004
George Anderson

By George Anderson

Consumers hate getting junk mail, whether it comes delivered by a U.S. postal worker, or arrives in an e-mail box from a fictional acquaintance.

Federal legislators and regulators, who receive (and in some cases distribute) more than their fair share of unwanted mail, passed the CAN-SPAM law to eliminate deceptive e-mail.

The problem is that tracking down spammers and prosecuting them is not an easy thing to do.

Howard Beales, director of the FTC’s Consumer Protection Bureau, told the Chicago Sun-Times, “We’ve found that it’s difficult to find the spammers. It frequently takes
us a series of 15, sometimes 20 subpoenas to track down a person in the real world we can actually sue.’

Moderator’s Comment: What is the answer to the spam issue?

Bill Gates has suggested we may all have to pay a fee for a stamp to send email. That way all email could be more easily tracked back to its source.
Anderson – Moderator

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