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Quote of the Day - If you don't get Spam, you feel left out. - Alan Pelzer
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Spam- Soon to be Illegal in California

Just a scant 30 minutes ago, Governor in Waiting Gray Davis signed SB 186, banning spam in California. The bill makes it illegal for spammers to send unsolicited email. The estimates in the bill are that 40% of all email sent is spam, and by the end of this year alone, it will reach 50%, costing us over $1.2 billion dollars.

Fines are stiff: $1,000 for each violation and up to $1,000,000 for a email blitz campaign. The bill also provides for an award of attorneys fees to the prevailing plaintiff. The Los Angeles Times article quotes the Bill's author, State Senator Kevin Murray, who says it will be easy to collect these fines.

The bill applies to "'Commercial e-mail advertisement[s']' [, which] means any electronic mail message initiated for the purpose of advertising or promoting the lease, sale, rental, gift offer, or other disposition of any property, goods, services, or extension of credit." The bill goes into effect January 1, 2004, and does not apply retroactively.

The bill also requires email senders to provide an opt-out method - either in the email itself or an 800 number. Most other states have Spam laws, but California's is comparatively harsh. It will likely set a new standard for other states and the federal government.

Plus, it will be a crime to send unsolicited email in California. So not only can regular citizens sue spammers, the AG and DA can file charges. Ouch!

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Wednesday, September 24, 2003 at 07:52 Comments Closed (1) |
 
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