|Received:||8/16/2004 9:33:25 PM|
|Agency:||Federal Trade Commission|
|Rule:||Definitions, Implementation, and Reporting Requirements Under the CAN-SPAM Act (NPRM)|
Comments:Well, the spam continues to increase unabated. My ISP filters, and I use a 3rd party filtering program as well, but even so, I still get over 100 spam messages per day (far more than the rest of my email. None of it, of course, identifies itself as commercial email -- most of it, in fact, hides behind subject lines designed to trick the unwary into reading it ("meeting thursday 1pm"). Besides offering me illegal prescription drugs, mortgages I don't need, and fraudlent diplomas, many of the spam messages are sexually explicit, including quite a few with *extremely* graphic pictures. I have never visited a porn site or given anyone any other impression that I might be interested in pornography, yet I continue to have this inflicted upon me against my will. I shudder to think of what will happen in a year or two when my daughter is old enough to have her own email account, and I will have no effective way to protect her from this onslaught. One thing that I as a citizen would really appreciate would be some way to forward the spam to a government agency so that people more skilled than I could track down and prosecute the spammers. At present, I feel that I am a captive audience with no way to report or fight back against the spammers. It is of note that a number of the spam messages claim to be in compliance with the CAN-SPAM legislation, but there appear to be no other actual differences between their messages and the more usual sort of spam. Unsubscribe requests are, of course, completely useless, and generally trigger more spam once the spammers realize that there's a live human reading at an email address. What really needs to happen, and this will need significant governmental support, is to have the world's sysadmins develop and install a new mail protocol that allows the actual senders of emails to be tracked and verified. Back when I was in college, sending emails with spoofed return addresses was a fun joke. It's now become a way of life for the spammers, permitting them to destroy the usefulness of email with impunity. By the way, while you're at it, you should also consider legislation regarding spyware. Although I am quite careful about which websites I go to, my computer is still regularly infected with spyware. I use *three* separate spyware-detection programs, and even taking that measure is insufficient to keep the spyware at bay. I'm afraid that the CAN-SPAM act is a complete and utter failure. It needs teeth. Go ahead, use some of my tax money to give it those teeth.