|Received:||3/16/2004 9:41:02 PM|
|Agency:||Federal Trade Commission|
The fatal flaw of the CAN-SPAM Act is its "opt-out" requirement. "Opt-in" is the only way government will ever curb commercial spammers. With "opt-out" commercial e-mailers will continue -- with the assistance of this Act -- to be able to trick Internet users into being placed on mailing lists. Another flawed aspect of "opt-out" is that sending a spammer an e-mailed request to be taken off a mailing list often only confirms to the spammer that the e-mail address is valid and active -- so that the spammer can sell it to other spammers. The government should have a clearinghouse where Internet users can forward spam for investigation. The Act is toothless as it now stands and it might even be exacerbating the problem. Please put the onus on the commercial sector to ask Internet users in advance whether they want to receive e-mailed advertising, and penalize those who send unsolicited commercial e-mail.