• United States

Mailbag: Readers wary of the CAN-SPAM Act

Apr 01, 20042 mins
Enterprise ApplicationsMessaging Apps

* Readers share their views and observations about CAN-SPAM

Following my recent article on the CAN-SPAM Act, I received a number of e-mails with views and observations on the issue; here’s a sampling of that feedback:

* “Almost immediately after the CAN-SPAM legislation was signed into law, I noticed that most of our spam started coming from offshore domains.  Obviously, this was an attempt to legally side step the new law.  While not necessarily decreasing the amount of spam, this made it a lot easier for me to block spam because we do not do any business offshore.”

* “Much of the spam is sent by people who are already committing criminal acts in their spam of one kind or another.  Calling what they do a crime for a different reason will not induce them to become model citizens!”

* “We have seen only one small change in the spam coming through since the CAN-SPAM legislation went through: a very small percentage of spam (less than 1%) is now following the guidelines for unsolicited messages, marking the messages with ‘Advert’ in the subject line, providing a valid opt-out link, etc.  The funny thing is, that simply makes it easier to detect and delete automatically, providing an ANTI-incentive to following those guidelines.”

* “I thought that the [CAN-SPAM] Act was dead from the time they decided that the opt-out method was the preferred way to go, not opt-in.  It also suffered blows when the politicians exempted themselves from provisions of the Act.  One might go one way or the other on exempting charities, but exempting businesses [that] believe they have a prior relationship with you was also a death blow without the opt-in provision.”

* “I get nervous and very wary every time government gets involved in issues like this which are not morally or ethically driven.  The politicians’ motives are primarily driven to ‘look’ like they are doing something vs. actually trying to fix it.”

Thank you to all of you who wrote me with your views on this issue.