"No Spam" List Canned - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

06/16/04

"No Spam" List Canned

The wonders of the internet have enriched our lives in many ways. But it comes with a price in the bane of unsolicited email, or spam. "I don't like it, I don't think anyone likes being on the receiving end of spam and unnecessary emails," said Johan Harris when we caught up with him at Broughton Street's Bits, Bytes and Coffee internet cafe. "It's a waste of time, it's irritating."

Beyond that, email users say spam can be downright offensive. Mark Herschede, who works at the cafe, told us, "Anything that's sexual in nature really seems disturb me, pointing towards those kind of deviant websites."

"I've seen some pornographic things come up but the majority of the stuff is something telling you're in line to win something the whole time," added Harris. "When you click on it, I suppose your email address goes out to...I'm not quite sure."

The federal government doesn't like spam either. In fact, last year they passed a law against spam. But one of the plans outlined in the so-called CAN SPAM Act, they're now saying, is likely to do more harm than good. Among other things, the CAN SPAM Act required the Federal Trade Commission to investigate the feasibility of a national 'do not email' list, similar to the popular, Do Not Call Registry.

"In theory it sounds good, but if the list comes in contact with the wrong companies or the wrong people, it's back out in the loop, I think," noted Johan.

"It'd be like a kid in a candy store," said Herschede. "They'd be going through this list and basically emailing everybody on it. It's not going to help at all."

The FTC agrees, and is shelving the idea. For now anyway, there's still plenty of spam to go around.

Reported by: Charles Gray, cgray@wtoc.com

 

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