Not only is the FTC business friendly, but so is Congress, and the Courts
(which struck down the junk fax law). As MAPS discovered with Exactis,
real commercial solicited email can not be blocked.
Of the Type 1 spammers, there are those that send solicited mail and those
that send unsolicited. They all want to operate with least annoyance, and
least complaints. I expect this group to utilize the DMA do-not-send
lists. So I expect that they will become less of a problem as time goes
by. Type 1 operations will make changes to comply with law, and will not
be fraudulent. I don't think this is anywhere close to the dominant form
of spam. But if they were, things would be pretty good. I think it is
the little operations that don't (yet) have these facilities, and are
misled by operations like ghostsender.com, which incidentally could be
itself controlled. So even the little ones should be less of a problem in
the future. Of course, ISPs could help by educating users on how to use
the internet commercially, such as how to use the DMA do-not-send list,
and what sort of cons are out there (like ghostsender.com). Particularly,
users should understand the general absence of true anonymity afforded by
the internet. The internet is no really no different from the PSTN, in
that respect. I think this mis-perception contributes to the abuses of
the internet, not just spam, but other kinds of abuses as well.
The Type 2 abusers are relatively easy to find. That isn't a tough one to
solve. This type probably won't ever go away, but this should not be any
more significant than other kinds of con-artists and grifters.
The real difficulty will be the Type 3's. But we don't know how much is
Type 3 yet. If its not a big proportion, then this shouldn't be a big
problem. On the other hand, if it is a big proporation, then we need to
interest the law enforcement agencies to chase down more "Kevin Mitnicks"
conducting "victimless" crimes. This could be harder to motivate, and at
present, no one is working on this that I know of.
On Mon, 26 May 2003, Bob Braden wrote:
*> Type 1: Bonafide Messaging with a real Commercial or non-profit(ie
*> political) purpose. This includes people selling contraband (eg drugs)
*> illegally, so long as they intend to deliver the illegal goods.
*> Of these types of spam, Type 1 and Type 2 can be dealt with by law, and
*> through the actions of the FTC and other regulatory agencies.
So, what happens when the FTC, which is today very business-friendly,
decides to place no restriction at all on "real Commercial" spam?
Given the current politics in Washington, that seems like a likely
scenario. Yet, this spam is the most hard-to-filter, and it may soon
become the dominant component of spam. I for one don't want to see my
email box filled with junk as my postal mailbox is.