On the case - February 2007February 2007
The perennial problem of SPAM continues to bother both privacy regulators and marketers (not to mention annoying a fair number of consumers). Seemingly countless international anti-SPAM groups have formed and met to mutter their discontent, but to date at least, their efforts have had little real impact on the SPAM scourge.
And a scourge it is, especially for legitimate marketers who want to use the email channel for their own messages and are finding themselves crowded out of the in-box by spurious offers for Viagra and dubious stock tips.
Notwithstanding that the European Directive on Privacy and Electronic Communications and the US Can SPAM legislation have laid down the law on email communications there are still far too many non-legitimate sources of email data being offered for rental and sale; these list sources, in turn, feed the non-legitimate marketers with the vital contacts they need.
Late last year, however, global giant Microsoft dealt a blow for the legitimate marketing industry and ISPs alike. Microsoft, which owns
The action was taken under the
The key point was that, although McDonald wasn’t himself sending the messages, he was, in fact, “instigating” them by selling the addresses.
The injunction was granted and the case sets an interesting precedent that not only the user of illegally obtained email addresses but also others in the chain of supply can be held liable for spreading SPAM.
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