How to Get Rid of the 4-letter S-Word

Written by Darryl Graham

Continued from page 1
You don't hear much about direct mail anymore becauserepparttar S-word has taken overrepparttar 105895 news. The problem isrepparttar 105896 S-word cannot be stopped by legislation or politicians or rules becauserepparttar 105897 people who are really abusingrepparttar 105898 email system are using techniques so they cannot be tracked. The S-Cop site is out to get rid ofrepparttar 105899 S-word and while I applaud their effort, going afterrepparttar 105900 little guy is not going to get rid ofrepparttar 105901 problem. The only way to get rid ofrepparttar 105902 S-word outside of charging a fee to send and receive email is to educate people. We need to educaterepparttar 105903 greedy people who still think they can get something for free onrepparttar 105904 Internet. We need to educaterepparttar 105905 people who are purchasing lists of names in small quantities and sending multiple emails without givingrepparttar 105906 receiver a chance to breathe in between messages. We need to educaterepparttar 105907 Autoresponder providers to just say no to someone who wants to send bunches of email with purchased lists. We need to educaterepparttar 105908 people who continue to buy fromrepparttar 105909 big S-worders because lets face it, if bulk email did not work, people would not send it. Someone is buying something from these people and whether they are doing it because they get a good price or because they are naive and believerepparttar 105910 message, does not matter. The illegal drug trade would dry up if people did not continue to buy illegal drugs. Terrorism would stop being a way to change policies ifrepparttar 105911 media did not give these people mention in their newspapers and on television and radio. The S-word is working for some people and it will continue to work and be a problem for all of us until everyone stops buying from them. The purpose of this article is to help educate people. If one person reads this article and avoids subscribing to get a free restaurant voucher, because he knows that he is going to get hit with bunches of emails, then we will have accomplished our goal. We, those of us working online need to makerepparttar 105912 S-word go away, because if we leave up torepparttar 105913 politicians and lawyers, werepparttar 105914 people who most depend onrepparttar 105915 Internet and email will be paying to send our email inrepparttar 105916 very near future. Personally, I do not want this to happen. I wantrepparttar 105917 government andrepparttar 105918 lawyers as far away fromrepparttar 105919 Internet as we can keep them because all in allrepparttar 105920 Internet works very well. However if we getrepparttar 105921 government involved, we might as well get prepared to start paying to send emails and also get use to 28k modems because they would take us back that far if they are allowed to interfere. S-word is not coming fromrepparttar 105922 reputable companies and people online. S-word is coming from people that do not care about laws or what is right or wrong. They only care aboutrepparttar 105923 dollar and they won't stop as long as they are making dollars, and they are only going to make dollars if people keep supporting them!

Darryl Graham is President of ISORegister, Inc. ISORegister has been online since 1999 and is committed to helping people better utilize the Internet in an efficient, effective and affordable manner while also teaching responsible marketing. Find out more about ISORegister, Inc. by visiting any of its websites.

The Economics of Spam

Written by Sam Vaknin

Continued from page 1

The line between permission-based or "opt-in" e-mail marketing and spam is getting thinner byrepparttar day. Some list resellers guaranteerepparttar 105894 consensual nature of their wares. According torepparttar 105895 Direct Marketing Association's guidelines, quoted by PC World, not responding to an unsolicited e-mail amounts to "opting-in" - a marketing strategy known as "opting out". Most experts, though, strongly urge spam victims not to respond to spammers, lest their e-mail address is confirmed.

But spam is crossing technological boundaries. Japan has just legislated against wireless SMS spam targeted at hapless mobile phone users. Four states inrepparttar 105896 USA as well asrepparttar 105897 European parliament are following suit. Expensive and slow connections make this kind of spam particularly resented. Still, according to Britain's Mobile Channel, a mobile advertising company quoted by "The Economist", SMS advertising - a novelty - attracts a 10-20 percent response rate - compared to direct mail's 1-3 percent.

Net identification systems - like Microsoft's Passport andrepparttar 105898 one proposed by Liberty Alliance - will make it even easier for marketers to target prospects.

The reaction to spam can be described only as mass hysteria. Reporting someone as a spammer - even when he is not - has become a favorite pastime of vengeful, self-appointed, vigilante "cyber-cops". Perfectly legitimate, opt-in, email marketing businesses often find themselves in one or more black lists - their reputation and business ruined.

In January, CMGI-owned Yesmail was awarded a temporary restraining order against MAPS - Mail Abuse Prevention System - forbidding it to placerepparttar 105899 reputable e-mail marketer on its Real-time Blackhole list. The case was settled out of court.

Harris Interactive, a large online opinion polling company, sued not only MAPS, but ISP's who blocked its email messages when it found itself included in MAPS' Blackhole. Their CEO accused one of their competitors forrepparttar 105900 allegations that led to Harris' inclusion inrepparttar 105901 list.

Coupled with other pernicious phenomena, such as viruses,repparttar 105902 very foundation ofrepparttar 105903 Internet as a fun, relatively safe, mode of communication and data acquisition is at stake.

Spammers, it emerges, have their own organizations. NOIC -repparttar 105904 National Organization of Internet Commerce threatened to post to its Web siterepparttar 105905 e-mail addresses of millions of AOL members. AOL has aggressive anti-spamming policies. "AOL is blocking bulk email because it wantsrepparttar 105906 advertising revenues for itself (by selling pop-up ads)"repparttar 105907 president of NOIC, Damien Melle, complained to CNET.

Spam is a classic "free rider" problem. For any given individual,repparttar 105908 cost of blocking a spammer far outweighsrepparttar 105909 benefits. It is cheaper and easier to hitrepparttar 105910 "delete" key. Individuals, therefore, prefer to let others dorepparttar 105911 job and enjoyrepparttar 105912 outcome -repparttar 105913 public good of a spam-free Internet. They cannot be left out ofrepparttar 105914 benefits of such an aftermath - public goods are, by definition, "non-excludable". Nor is a public good diminished by a growing number of "non-rival" users.

Such a situation resembles a market failure and requires government intervention through legislation and enforcement. The FTC -repparttar 105915 US Federal Trade Commission - has taken legal action against more than 100 spammers for promoting scams and fraudulent goods and services.

"Project Mailbox" is an anti-spam collaboration between American law enforcement agencies andrepparttar 105916 private sector. Non government organizations have enteredrepparttar 105917 fray, as have lobbying groups, such as CAUCE -repparttar 105918 Coalition Against Unsolicited Commercial E-mail.

But Congress is curiously reluctant to enact stringent laws against spam. Reasons cited are free speech, limits on state powers to regulate commerce, avoiding unfair restrictions on trade, andrepparttar 105919 interests of small business. The courts equivocate as well. In some cases - e.g., Missouri vs. American Blast Fax - US courts found "thatrepparttar 105920 provision prohibitingrepparttar 105921 sending of unsolicited advertisements is unconstitutional".

According to,repparttar 105922 107th Congress discussed these laws but never enacted them:

Unsolicited Commercial Electronic Mail Act of 2001 (H.R. 95), Wireless Telephone Spam Protection Act (H.R. 113), Anti-Spamming Act of 2001 (H.R. 718), Anti-Spamming Act of 2001 (H.R. 1017), Who Is E-Mailing Our Kids Act (H.R. 1846), Protect Children From E-Mail Smut Act of 2001 (H.R. 2472), Netizens Protection Act of 2001 (H.R. 3146), "CAN SPAM" Act of 2001 (S. 630).

Anti-spam laws fared no better inrepparttar 105923 106th Congress. Some ofrepparttar 105924 states have picked uprepparttar 105925 slack. Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

The situation is no better acrossrepparttar 105926 pond. The European parliament decided last year to allow each member country to enact its own spam laws, thus avoiding a continent-wide directive and directly confrontingrepparttar 105927 communications ministers ofrepparttar 105928 union. Paradoxically, it also decided, three months ago, to restrict SMS spam. Confusion clearly reigns. Finally, last month, it adopted strong anti-spam provisions as part of a Directive on Data Protection.

Sam Vaknin ( ) is the author of Malignant Self Love - Narcissism Revisited and After the Rain - How the West Lost the East. He served as a columnist for Central Europe Review, PopMatters, and eBookWeb , and Bellaonline, and as a United Press International (UPI) Senior Business Correspondent. He is the the editor of mental health and Central East Europe categories in The Open Directory and Suite101.

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