Simson Garfinkel

A View from Simson Garfinkel

New Spam Ban Won't Help Much

The US Senate has finally passed a do-not-spam bill, and this lovely article by Elise Ackerman in the San Jose Mercury News has all of the gory details for people who didn’t catch NPR’s excellent coverage.Will the spam bill work?…

  • October 23, 2003

The US Senate has finally passed a do-not-spam bill, and this lovely article by Elise Ackerman in the San Jose Mercury News has all of the gory details for people who didn’t catch NPR’s excellent coverage.

Will the spam bill work? I don’t think so. Here’s why:

  • For starters, most of the spam that’s out there is already illegal — it either advertises sexually explicit stuff to minors, or it is advertising scams, or it is being sent through illegal means.
  • Much of the spam that I get comes from overseas, where US laws do not apply.
  • Many states already have marking, no-faked-From-address, and mandatory removal requirements; they are ignored
  • The interesting thing, though, is that I really don’t have a spam problem. Oh, roughly 250 pieces of spam go into my inbox every day. But I use SpamAssassin, and it does an excellent job weeding it all out.

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