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February 21, 2005

"Spam Wars" Notes

Two items of interest today.

First, for those potential readers who have been holding out for a sample chapter, I've posted an Adobe Acrobat (PDF) file of several selections from the book (and the complete index). I don't know if it's because I had to create a second-generation Acrobat file, but the quality of the sample page text isn't like the crisp real thing. My apologies for that.

Second, Spam Wars readers know about my notion of the sanctity of one's email address and, sadly, how spammers violate that sanctity with great glee and frequency. On page 230 I talk about how Australia's antispam law limits what kind of consent can be inferred by someone obtaining an email address on a Web page.

Canada has just chimed in on the same subject. Read about Canada's Privacy Commissioner ruling, which implies similar limitations on how a publicly posted email address may be used by unsolicited emailers.

This is all well and good, but from my reading of what happened here, the case and ruling do nothing to thwart the worst of the worst harvesters (and the millionsCDs they've created over the years). In this case, a readily identifiable, brand-name, legitimate business got caught with its hand in the spam tin. Meanwhile, mega-harvesters and big "disguised" spammers are ROTFL (Rolling on The Floor Laughing), taunting with "Catch us if you can."

Posted on February 21, 2005 at 03:52 PM