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US anti-spam laws


What's the current state of this?

Only, one of our mailing lists has just been spammed by a company which claims to comply with it, and only do opt in email. They're clearly lying, because the email was sent to an address which can't generate outbound emails...

(salesuniverse.com, for anyone interested. A good contact would be alans@salesuniverse.com, who is on  415-240-4062 for anyone who wants to annoy him by calling him at 3am local or anything illegal that I couldn't possibly endorse, although I'd laugh about it.)

So... can we demand money off them for breaches of these laws yet or what?

It's not the spamming, particularly that bothers me. Normally we just blackhole their domain, their advertised domain, any friends we can find and then we get our mates who run the UK ISPs to do the same, and they sort of fall off the world as far as the UK is concerned.

This one's pissed me off because they're claiming to be ethical opt-in only marketeers as WELL as spamming...

Katie Lucas
Thursday, March 25, 2004

Ummm... welcome to the internet (?)

Ron
Thursday, March 25, 2004

> (salesuniverse.com, for anyone interested. A good contact would be alans@salesuniverse.com, who is on  415-240-4062 for anyone who wants to annoy him by calling him at 3am local or anything illegal that I couldn't possibly endorse, although I'd laugh about it.)

Uh, I hate to say it, but isn't saying something like this potentially criminal?

Li-fan Chen
Thursday, March 25, 2004

That's one of the things I am trying to figure out. How do you separate the good eggs from the bad eggs. No company is perfect, so how can you punish one overzealous marketer within a company while rewarding a very thoughtful marketer within a company? This is really troubling because I enjoy getting a select few emails from some of the companies I work with, but the same company would send me sh*t too. CIBC recently decided to add advertising from partners inside of my bill printouts. At first they can claim this helps them pay for the bill printouts, eventually these bills will become quarter of an inch thick.. or worst.

Li-fan Chen
Thursday, March 25, 2004

> how can you punish one overzealous marketer within a company while rewarding a very thoughtful marketer within a company?

Only tar and feather the bad ones? Of course, we are doing this thought experiment in the fantasy world where there /are/ thoughtful marketers.


Thursday, March 25, 2004

>>>This one's pissed me off because they're claiming to be ethical opt-in only marketeers as WELL as spamming...<<<

This is kind of a throw back.  Spammers used to do this sort of thing all the time: claim to be opt-in, claim to not be spam, or claim to be conforming to requirements of some proposed US anti-spam law.  It was a bit of a puzzle to me as to why they did it.  Who did they think they were fooling?  But that sort of thing is rare nowdays.

There really hasn't been much progress with cleaning up spam, although people keep coming up with ideas.  OTOH, the US national do not call list is doing quite well at reducing telemarketer calls (at least for me it is).

mackinac
Thursday, March 25, 2004

Not all opt-in is necessarily opt-in via electronic means. Paper registration which includes an e-mail address may result in opt-in.

The new spam laws basically require anybody who sents out e-mail to keep a list of people who say "no more", and obey it, even if it isn't what you'd call a traditional mass mailing.

Brad Wilson (dotnetguy.techieswithcats.com)
Thursday, March 25, 2004

+++What's the current state of this?

Only, one of our mailing lists has just been spammed by a company which claims to comply with it, and only do opt in email. They're clearly lying, because the email was sent to an address which can't generate outbound emails...+++

You want money because someone sent you a single E-mail?  I can think of a dozen ways someone can get an E-mail that's not on a web site, but if they did, it's hard to see how you can claim you were spammed.

In the US, opt-out E-mail is "officially" legal as of CAN SPAM, though you are required to remove anyone who requests it from your lists. 

From a constitutional standpoint, opt-out will probably always survive in the US because we have a First Amendment, the courts frown on apriori censorship, commercial speech is constitutionally protected and lots of groups of all sorts oppose the the type of thing that goes on in places like the UK, home of the "Official Secrets Act."

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Thursday, March 25, 2004

Yes, but this email address didn't opt in. And yeah, we'll take a contribution to running the big thick internet connection the machine needs...

Katie Lucas
Thursday, March 25, 2004

The bill of rights only applies to "real people" and the first amendment does not cover commercial speach.  So opt-in is just as constitutional as opt-out.

The root cause is that the framers of the constitution didn't anticipate the age of corporations, so a lot of things should be added but haven't and exist solely as supreme court guesses about what the framers intended the constitution to say.

I can say, based on my spam research, that opt-out does not work.  I have some evidence to suggest that it will opt you out for a week or two, but then the same folks will mail you again.

In fact, an address that I can prove was collected once, and only once, has been getting ever increasing amounts of spam.  It's lame.  I've clicked the "opt out" and the same people come back a few weeks later.

The impression I get is that every single "legitimate" email marketer is either directly or indirectly a con.  The trick is that whoever sells them their list claims to have permission, which was either not knowingly given, or just invents permission.  So the folks who care do it once and realize they've been conned, whereas the folks who know they are up to no good and don't care keep at it, while insisting that one of their "marketing affiliates" did them wrong and they won't deal with them again.  All of the sudden, another "marketing affiliate" will sell them your address again and since you were removed from their list, they add you back.

The thing is, fax.com has been playing this shell game for years and has managed to avoid trouble.  If you sued them, they would countersue you for extortion and provide a (forged) call sheet to "prove" that you really did sign up.

The problem is that the only way to really prove consent is to involve the user, i.e. not just opt-in, but confirmed double opt-in.

These people have been around forever.  In the middle ages, they were selling indulgences.  In the 1800s, they were selling radium water and snake oil that was mostly cocaine.  They've just found a new mode of operation.

Flamebait Sr.
Thursday, March 25, 2004

I just thought this new law might mean we can go slap them. <sigh>

"Welcome to the internet" -- Hey! I was here BEFORE there was spam. I was around for "the september that never ended" that brought the rest of you...

Katie Lucas
Thursday, March 25, 2004

"The september that never ended"?

You may be able to go after them, simply because you are playing the role of your own ISP.  But you'd have to prove that they broke the law, which is pretty damn loose.

Flamebait Sr.
Thursday, March 25, 2004

The new federal anti-spam law is a joke.  It preempts state laws, so earlier state anti-spam laws -- which often provide better protection -- are no longer enforceable. 

Also, the only people who can enforce it are the federal government, state governments, or ISPs.  Individuals can't sue to enforce it.  Details here (section 7):

http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108s877.html

(In contrast, the junk fax law lets you sue for up to $500 for each junk fax received.) 

The bottom line is that the spam you received could very well be illegal, but you really can't do a damn thing about it.

Robert Jacobson
Thursday, March 25, 2004

+++The bill of rights only applies to "real people"+++

Wrong.

+++and the first amendment does not cover commercial speach.  So opt-in is just as constitutional as opt-out.+++

Wrong.  Not a disputable point; there have been several recent cases covering just this point.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Thursday, March 25, 2004

"No company is perfect, so how can you punish one overzealous marketer within a company while rewarding a very thoughtful marketer within a company? This is really troubling because I enjoy getting a select few emails from some of the companies I work with, but the same company would send me sh*t too."

I've heard similar comments, something of the form "requiring opt-in-only policies would penalize legitimate marketeers".  This makes no sense!  To me, a legitimate marketeer would only obide by opt in policies.  If they didn't, they aren't legit. 

Why is an avon spammer any more legit than a natural male enhancement spammer?

josReader
Thursday, March 25, 2004

"Wrong.  Not a disputable point; there have been several recent cases covering just this point."

It's dangerous to make categorical statements about constitutional law.  Until the Supreme Court has spoken, the best you can do is offer a prediction about whether something will be held constitutional. 

I wrote a paper on this topic several years ago in law school, and came to the conclusion that an opt-in requirement is probably constitutional.  Several items to note: the Supreme Court has held that the First Amendment is less protective of advertising (commercial speech), and lower courts have upheld the federal junk fax law, which imposes an opt-in requirement.

There just isn't a general consensus on this yet.  Some attorneys believe that it is constitutional, while others think it isn't constitutional.  E.g.,

http://www.umd.umich.edu/casl/hum/comm/spam.html
http://www.gigalaw.com/articles/2000-all/morris-2000-12-all.html
http://www.duanemorris.com/articles/article1361.html

The bottom line is that the constitutionality of an opt-in requirement is an open question. 

If you know of some specific cases to back up your opinion, I'd be curious to look at them.

Robert Jacobson
Thursday, March 25, 2004

+++It's dangerous to make categorical statements about constitutional law. +++

Not really.  Since the 70's there have been many cases that dealt with the constitutionality of commercial speech.

+++I wrote a paper on this topic several years ago in law school, and came to the conclusion that an opt-in requirement is probably constitutional.+++

That's nice.  I'm excited you're interested in attempting to impose  a massive apriori system of censorship that attempts to categorize and ban a class of speech.  As anyone who has studied the SC's obscenity ban, not likely to be too succesful but go ahead.

+++Several items to note: the Supreme Court has held that the First Amendment is less protective of advertising (commercial speech),+++

This is one of those urban legends people like to spread around, like the one that tells us men like to beat up women during the Super Bowl.

Men like to eat and drink beer during the Super Bowl.  Afterwards, they like to go sleep.

+++If you know of some specific cases to back up your opinion, I'd be curious to look at them.+++

No problem.  Look up Lorillard Tobacco Co. v. Reilly. 1999, I believe.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Thursday, March 25, 2004

+++Yes, but this email address didn't opt in. +++

Well, how do we know that?  You've indicated the E-mail address is not web based.  The person who contacted you apparently gave you their name and identity; this hardly seems the action of a "spammer." 

If someone sees you talk about this topic on this board and sends you a message saying they have a solution to your problem, do you intend to waste the time of US courts suing them?

Are we supposed to pay for geek censors who will run around deciding what is "allowed" mail and "non-allowed" mail on the Inet?

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Thursday, March 25, 2004

Thanks for pointing out that that silly urban legend.  I think it got started with the Supreme Court's opinion in Central Hudson v. Public Service Commission (1980), where it said

"The Constitution therefore accords a lesser protection to commercial speech than to other constitutionally guaranteed expression."

I really shouldn't trust the Supreme Court on issues of constitutional law.  Your version is much more accurate.

Robert Jacobson
Thursday, March 25, 2004

"The Constitution therefore accords a lesser protection to commercial speech than to other constitutionally guaranteed expression."

Well, that's what one judge said in one opinion stating that commerical speech is constitutionally protected.  Justice Thomas expressed another opinion in the later case, which you had apparently not heard of, in a more recent opinion protecting the constitutionality of commercially protected speech.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Thursday, March 25, 2004

Actually, that's what the majority of the Supreme Court said in a binding, precedential opinion.  That's still the law of the land: commercial speech is not entitlted to as much protection as other speech.  It's entitled to some First Amendment protection, just not as much.

I read the Lorillard opinion you referred to.  It was a narrow decision (written by Justice O'Connor) that held that one state's restriction on tobacco outdoor advertising was overbroad.  It doesn't support your apparent thesis that any restriction on commercial speech is unconstitutional.

The problem with that these cases is that they apply a fairly wishy-washy standard -- basically, that the government can restrict commercial speech iff the law is for a sufficiently important reason and isn't too restrictive.  Is preventing spam sufficiently compelling?  It's hard to guess what the Court would decide.

Now please end this silly debate before I compare you to Hitler.  <g>

Robert Jacobson
Thursday, March 25, 2004

> "The september that never ended"?

http://info.astrian.net/jargon/terms/s/September_that_never_ended.html


Friday, March 26, 2004

+++I read the Lorillard opinion you referred to.  It was a narrow decision (written by Justice O'Connor) that held that one state's restriction on tobacco outdoor advertising was overbroad.  It doesn't support your apparent thesis that any restriction on commercial speech is unconstitutional.+++

Translation: I'm not up to date on this, Justice Thomas DOES think commercial speech should have equal status to other forms of speech, I'm not aware that for thirty years the court has steadily expanded the rights of commercially oriented speech, that what holds for one state in a SC decision hold for all of them and no one said *any* restriction on commercial speech is unconstitutional.  (But we can tell you're a lawyer from the use of that old trick.)

No one argues that fraudulent commercial offers are protected by the FA, regardless of whether they're made by E-mail, phone, fax, or in person.

No one argues that bribing people to vote for you is constitutionally protected speech despite the fact that the FA loves political speech.

Try to stay grounded in reality here.

However, what organizations like the ACLU pointed out was that to attempt to mandate opt-in of necessity means imposing a vast censorship system that would impose apriori restrictions on commercial speech and that would  not pass constitutional muster.

A point I have a feeling your paper failed to deal with.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Friday, March 26, 2004

You're going to end up on a case-by-case basis here.

A ten million strong Viagre mass mailing is likely to be deemed as falling outside the protection of the law. A lawyer who has just moved into a two-horse town and sends his V card to the local chamber of commerce is lkely to be viewed as meriting the protection of the law.

The question is when unbridled use of First Amendment rights impinges on the enjoyment of other constitutionally protected rights.

Stephen Jones
Friday, March 26, 2004

+++A ten million strong Viagre mass mailing is likely to be deemed as falling outside the protection of the law. +++

Demonstrably untrue.  CAN SPAM makes no attempt to ration E-mail.  I strongly doubt any court will attempt to decide just how much mail is OK and how much is not OK.  Legitimate E-mail firms do multi-million drops all the time.

CAN SPAM  simply states that you have to not contact people who have heard you and decided they don't want to hear you again and outlines how you do this.

None of this is that complicated, at least it shouldn't be, to an American.  I have a right to address you, regardless of the medium, without apriori censorship.  YOU have the right to say you've heard me and don't want to hear from me anymore.

Where restrictions against commerical speech will be upheld is where someone deliberately continues to address you after you've made it clear you don't want to hear anymore.  That's the equivalent of having someone come up to you in the street asking you to sign a petition, you refusing, then having them follow you as you step away and start yelling  because you declined to sign the paper.  That's harassment and is not protected by the FA.

But in the US, where we do have an FA, everyone has a right to speak on any topic to anyone (except for naughty things, which, alas, the SC has failed to identify) without apriori censorship.  We all get one bite at the apple.

The Mail Police don't like that approach, but I think it's the American way.

As for fraud and theft, they are already illegal regardless of what medium a crook uses to fleece their victims.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Friday, March 26, 2004

I was referrring to protection under the First Amendment, not under the CANSPAM law.

The problem with opt-out is that a spammer will send you one email from one organization, and then when you opt-out send you another from another.

Sooner or later somebody will bring a case for damages or harrasment, and then the factors I described will come into effect.

The truth is the best way to deal with spammers is counter-harrassment. 3.am calls are a start, and thanks to Net2Phone we can all do it from the comfort of our homes and at a time convenient to us.

How many "legitimate" mass mailers have opt-in mailing lists of ten million or more? Legitimate seems a pretty sleazy term where you come from.

Stephen Jones
Friday, March 26, 2004

+++I was referrring to protection under the First Amendment, not under the CANSPAM law.+++

CAN SPAM was written with one eye on the FA.

+++The problem with opt-out is that a spammer will send you one email from one organization, and then when you opt-out send you another from another.+++

If you are able to prove that a company is running a shell game to avoid removing you from their lists, I'm sure the courts will be sympathetic.

+++Sooner or later somebody will bring a case for damages or harrasment, and then the factors I described will come into effect.+++

I'm sure they will, but they will not be able to make a case based on the use of opt-out mailings.  They will  have to prove that requests for removal were ignored or evaded.

+++The truth is the best way to deal with spammers is counter-harrassment. 3.am calls are a start, and thanks to Net2Phone we can all do it from the comfort of our homes and at a time convenient to us. +++

The truth is that if someone is stupid enough to follow your stupid advice they will deserve what happens to them.

+++How many "legitimate" mass mailers have opt-in mailing lists of ten million or more? +++

Several.  In the US, DM is about a one trillion dollar industry.

+++Legitimate seems a pretty sleazy term where you come from. +++

Ignorance of the facts seems to be a common concept where you come from.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Friday, March 26, 2004

Must be time for another net legend/myth.

The story goes that a spammer was persistently spamming newsgroups and the "populace" (for want of a better word) decided to do something similar to what Stephen Jones suggests. The newsgroup was rec.motorcyling.harley or something like that, so you can imagine what their equivalent of a 3am phone call might be.

I don't remember where I read it, and am pretty sure it is not true, but it is a nice story anyway.


Friday, March 26, 2004

> one of our mailing lists has just been spammed by a company which claims to comply with it, and only do opt in email. They're clearly lying, because the email was sent to an address which can't generate outbound emails...+++

>I can think of a dozen ways someone can get an E-mail that's not on a web site

She didn't say that it was not on a website.

Personally I agree with Spamhaus' position: http://www.spamhaus.org/position/CAN-SPAM_Act_2003.html and to be honest, since I see no valid email coming from the US would be quite happy to blacklist the entire country, in the same way as some people do with Korea, China, etc.


Friday, March 26, 2004

+++She didn't say that it was not on a website.+++

She said it couldn't generate "outgoing" E-mails.  Any address on a web site can be "harvested."  The implication is clear and she didn't dispute it.

+++Personally I agree with Spamhaus' position: http://www.spamhaus.org/position/CAN-SPAM_Act_2003.html +++

You certainly have the right.  However, here in the US we have an FA and we don't have an Official Secrets Act.

+++since I see no valid email coming from the US would be quite happy to blacklist the entire country, in the same way as some people do with Korea, China, etc. +++

So?  Who's stopping you?  Take it to the next level and boycott all US-based web sites like this one.  You always run the danger that people will point out that the FA doesn't like apriori censorship and that Mail Nazis like Spamhaus will become upset by this.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Friday, March 26, 2004

Why can't I call the guy at 3.am? I thought you said my right to call once was protected by the FA?

After all I won't call again if he tells me not too (and how do I know he isn't interesting in selling a hundred million doses of Viagra to Outer Mongolia in return for a consignment of curdled yak milk). In fact if one percent of his ten million customers decided to call him up I doubt if I'd ever get through to make a second call if I wanted to :)

Stephen Jones
Friday, March 26, 2004

+++Why can't I call the guy at 3.am? +++

Go right ahead!  I'm not stopping you.

+++I thought you said my right to call once was protected by the FA?+++

Yes, it is.  In the US; not going to comment on the ROW.  There are a couple of catches, but I think it will be fun and interesting for you to discover these on your own!

+++After all I won't call again if he tells me not too (and how do I know he isn't interesting in selling a hundred million doses of Viagra to Outer Mongolia in return for a consignment of curdled yak milk). In fact if one percent of his ten million customers decided to call him up I doubt if I'd ever get through to make a second call if I wanted to :) +++

I encourage you to take up this interesting and exciting hobby!  Make sure you do not call people with first names such as "Vinnie," "Vito," and "Uri."  If you do, let us know where to send the flowers while you are recovering from the multiple abrasions and broken bones you will undoubtedly be accumulating.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Friday, March 26, 2004

Actually, the "calling at 3 a.m." story has repeated itself over and over and over again.  Small wonder why spammers tend to keep a low profile and/or do it from another country.

The problem is, it doesn't really change much.  Spammers know they are annoying 99.99% of the world to be able to scam the .01%.  So getting called at 3 a.m. and whatnot just lets them know that they had best keep their mouths shut.

There's at least two spammers with addresses in Flamebait City who have spammed me.  I've always been tempted to figure out what sort of location they were, but I figure that if I actually met a spammer, the urge to communicate how much they annoy me, with lecture aids best not described in polite company, would be a little too much.

Flamebait Sr.
Friday, March 26, 2004

>>>  None of this is that complicated, at least it shouldn't be, to an American.  I have a right to address you, regardless of the medium, without apriori censorship.  YOU have the right to say you've heard me and don't want to hear from me anymore. <<<

TFAAMS seems to be putting some meaning in to the FA that I have never found in it.  You may have a right to speak or publish without the government censoring you, but I don't find anywhere in the FA that says I have to listen to you.  That means not even the first time to find out what you have to say and tell you I don't want to hear it anymore.

Discussions about free speech rights as protected by the FA tend to concentrate on the rights of the producer without much consideration of the consumer.  I think the right of the consumer to select what to read or listen to is just as important as the right to decide what to publish.

Just what is the right thing to do about spam without violating the FA, I am not sure yet.  Opt-out would be useless as anyone who has gotten much spam would realize.  The national do-not call list has been a good solution to telemarketing, but we would need some changes to the technology of email before a do not spam list would work.

mackinac
Friday, March 26, 2004

>+++She didn't say that it was not on a website.+++
>
>She said it couldn't generate "outgoing" E-mails.  Any >address on a web site can be "harvested."

The two are completely unconnected.

>here in the US we have an FA and we don't have an Official Secrets Act.

So you keep saying.

Is it or is it not illegal to give secret government information to a foriegn power in the US (which is essentially what the British Official Secrets Act is designed to stop)? Do you think that you could get away with publishing, oh, a way of breaking DVD scrambing? Breaking the protection on a supposedly secure document format?

Funnily enough, where I come from "FA" means Fuck All, which is about all your precious First Amendment is worth these days. Luckily the belief in the principle is still alive in Europe (try reading the Europen Human Rights documents sometime). Maybe you should emmigrate. Mind you, if you spam we'll lock you up.

>You always run the danger that people will point out that the FA doesn't like apriori censorship

Your "FA" does not apply where I live. Or are you just another waste of space who thinks American laws apply all over the planet? On that basis one could also apply the UK and other European anti-spam laws to the US, in which case we get to lock the spammers up.

Are you a spammer, " The First Amendment Actually Means Something"?


Saturday, March 27, 2004

+++TFAAMS seems to be putting some meaning in to the FA that I have never found in it.+++

Then it might help if you actually studied the history of the most important amendment in the Constituion.

+++You may have a right to speak or publish without the government censoring you, but I don't find anywhere in the FA that says I have to listen to you.+++

Who said you did?

+++That means not even the first time to find out what you have to say and tell you I don't want to hear it anymore.+++

Wrong.  Because you don't want to hear something doesn't give you the right to prevent someone from saying it.

The essence of the FA, BTW.

You can look it up.

+++Discussions about free speech rights as protected by the FA tend to concentrate on the rights of the producer without much consideration of the consumer.+++

Discussions about free speech rights as protected by the FA tend to concentrate on the rights of the speaker because our country has learned, hopefully, that there is ALWAYS some troglodyte out there who is quite willing to surpress and intimidate people saying things he/she doesn't like.

Again, the essence of the FA, BTW.

+++I think the right of the consumer to select what to read or listen to is just as important as the right to decide what to publish.+++

No one stops you from reading whatever you wish.  This does not give you the right to stop someone from writing something you don't want to read.

+++Just what is the right thing to do about spam +++

The "right" thing to do about spam is set up a filter, if you wish, and stop whining about spam.  A good filter cuts out about 95%+ of junk mail and allows you to manage the job of deciding what you want to read/listen to.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Saturday, March 27, 2004

+++The two are completely unconnected.+++

The two are connected and she didn't dispute the statement.

Next.

+++So you keep saying.+++

And I'll keep pointing it out.  I think it rather healthy to note that Spamhaus flourishes in a state that practices suppression of speech to an extent that would cause riots here.

+++Is it or is it not illegal to give secret government information to a foriegn power in the US (which is essentially what the British Official Secrets Act is designed to stop)?+++

Oh, really.  Well, I note the British government seems to think everything is a "secret."  In the US, home of the FA, we have a different take on things.  We don't threaten journalists with jail when someone leaks "secret" information to the press.

+++ Do you think that you could get away with publishing, oh, a way of breaking DVD scrambing? +++

Do I face criminal prosecution?

No.

Next.

+++Funnily enough, where I come from "FA" means Fuck All, which is about all your precious First Amendment is worth these days. Luckily the belief in the principle is still alive in Europe (try reading the Europen Human Rights documents sometime).+++

I'm sure Americans are just all tingly about the prospect of Europe givng lessons to the US on individual freedom. 

+++Your "FA" does not apply where I live.+++

Who cares? 

+++ Or are you just another waste of space who thinks American laws apply all over the planet?+++

Nah, I'm just an American who realizes that the FA is a marvelous invention and that you're someone from a place that is FAR less enlightened.  But don't worry.  One day, civilization will come to your benighted shores and you can all stop grubbing about in the dirt and hope to aspire to our exalted climes.  In the meantime, keep on scatching yourself, grunt heartily, and try not to spread those fleas all around!

+++Are you a spammer, " The First Amendment Actually Means Something"? +++

Yes.  I plan to send you six thousand, three hundred and thirty six E-mails advertising a little red pill that will revive your flagging intellect.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Saturday, March 27, 2004

>>> The "right" thing to do about spam is set up a filter, if you wish, and stop whining about spam.  A good filter cuts out about 95%+ of junk mail and allows you to manage the job of deciding what you want to read/listen to. <<<

TANSTAAFL.  Not only is there no such thing as a free lunch, there is also no such thing as free free speech, that is, free (as in lunch) free (as in speech) speech.  With newspapers or books most of the cost is borne by the publisher or by customers who buy the papers or books and thus make the choice to support the publisher.  The problem with spam is, not only is it cheap for the spammer, but most of the costs are externalized.

We can be glad that the FA prevents those "troglodytes" from suppressing content they don't want.  Will it protect us from those who want to morph a right into a "gimme" and tell us that not only can people publish what they want (OK by me) but the rest of it have to pay for it (you'll get a big objection from me).

mackinac
Saturday, March 27, 2004

+++Not only is there no such thing as a free lunch, there is also no such thing as free free speech, that is, free (as in lunch) free (as in speech) speech.+++

Really.  This forum seems to be infested with people who never bothered to study Civics 101.

I'm sure there is a cost associated with free speech.  For instance, making sure idiots don't run around threatening people who dare to exercise this right.

However, it's a cost that our society seems willing to bear, given the alternative.

+++ With newspapers or books most of the cost is borne by the publisher or by customers who buy the papers or books and thus make the choice to support the publisher.  The problem with spam is, not only is it cheap for the spammer, but most of the costs are externalized.+++

I'm not exactly sure what you mean by this.  I don't notice people rushing to use the "cheap" Post Office despite the fact that the costs are "externalized" (which in fact they are not).  If spam is so expensive, don't use E-mail.  Pay $.33 (didn't the price go up?) per message and enjoy your bargain!

+++We can be glad that the FA prevents those "troglodytes" from suppressing content they don't want.+++

We can be glad we all get to speak without apriori censorship, yes.  And don't live in a land inhabited by idiots who don't understand the value of this, yes.

+++  Will it protect us from those who want to morph a right into a "gimme" and tell us that not only can people publish what they want (OK by me) but the rest of it have to pay for it (you'll get a big objection from me).+++

Then save money  by putting pen to paper and raking in the savings.

The First Amendment Actually Means Something
Saturday, March 27, 2004

One of the best email marketing companies in thr whole of NA which caters to all segments target market it could be SIC codes,titles and geographic location you want to reach and generate active qualified leads.

Salesuniverse Strictly follows CAN -SPAM laws and it has only opt-in lists 

Dan kirk
Friday, June 25, 2004

The Whole Sales World is comprised of Sales gurus who claim to know all about sales and marketing. The SalesUniverse is full of players that look alike and are hard to differentiate between. Members from across the market space should look at the following metrics before selecting a partner or agency

Initially, marketing executives tell us they're pleased with the work their agencies are producing. So in a word, it appears clients ultimately end up selecting and partnering with what they refer to as "a great agency." At least until…

So why be unduly concerned with the agency selection process? What does it have to do with corporate finance? Because in and of itself, the agency selection process could be the most significant financial experience of your client/agency relationship. So the challenge is not so much to find and select the perfect agency (for we all seem to eventually get there), but to do so responsibly, with dispatch and efficiency.

The Perfect Agency:

Before we explore some fiscally responsible procedures, let's look at what constitutes the perfect agency. Most clients and agencies agree on the components:

1. Relevant experience,
2. Breadth and depth of capabilities,
3. On-point strategy,
4. Proximity,
5. Creativity,
6. And Chemistry.

Of course that's viewed from the client's eyes, with only chemistry likely to change in their view. Chemistry is that elusive "likeability" component; an expression of how the client and agency contacts get along, their respect and affinity for one another, a commonality of purpose, enthusiasm for the task at hand, and a common sense of direction and shared responsibility. Those who teach chemistry preach, "birds of a feather flock together -- in business." When players change, chemistry changes. Of all the components, everyone agrees chemistry is the one element that inevitably leads to change and an agency review.

The Perfect Search:

With an understanding and appreciation for daily costs, there's an incentive to develop and then follow a simple set of sequential steps:

Have valid reasons to dismiss the old before hiring the new.
Identify and assemble your "fixed & locked" executive search team.
Define team duties and responsibilities - how and who calls the shots.
Determine if you need assistance from a consultant, and for what.
Take measures to keep your search private and confidential.
Take time to carefully construct a list of your ideal agency criteria.
Use Internet technology to help identify all the qualified agencies.
Extend invitations, asking for a serious show of interest, not creative samples.
Screen initial candidates using telephone interviews.
Request relevant materials from candidates that impressed you.
Cut to a short list based on their submitted materials and phone interviews.
Hold your first face-to-face meetings - at the ad agency offices.
Identify finalists and then invite them to your offices.
Hold final meetings (presentations & negotiations with your team)
Select the most qualified and compatible agency.
Thank those you couldn't select; then notify the press.
The Perfect 21st Century Search:

The Internet gave rise to business models, processes and procedures that could not have existed without it. In 1997, we launched agencyfinder.com, the Internet's first and only on-line/off-line consulting service for client and agency matchmaking. The service evolved from new business consulting we were providing to advertising and public relations agencies in Europe and North America. Our challenge was to facilitate and help expedite what had become an expensive, time consuming and frequently frustrating process - for client and agency alike.

What we offered was a first - clients or consultants were able to take advantage of the far-reaching, cost-effective attributes of the Internet to search through a vast database of advertising, public relations and marketing firms that demonstrated their commitment to new business development and their desire to be found - by the right clients, for the right opportunities.

Agencyfinder.com is in some ways similar to an industry directory, yet with an opposing business model. Directory listings are free and the books are sold. Directory CD-ROMs and Internet adaptations use the same financial model - owning or searching carries a fee. Our objective was to give all qualified searchers free and immediate access to allow them to select "certified" agencies based on their database information. This allows agencies that took the initiative and applied for "certification" to pledge professional behavior, and to support the virtues of an expeditious, non-prejudicial selection and matching process.

Our business model is based on more than directing searchers to an agency's directory listing, but rather to collect and inventory informational and intellectual agency content to allow searchers to take advantage of our powerful search algorithms. That process narrows and selects candidates based on attributes (such as relevant experience, breadth and depth of capabilities, on-point strategy and proximity), and then on seven comprehensive essays and client case histories. These essays and case histories not only explain the agency's philosophy, creative development process, corporate culture, and view on the client/agency relationship, but they also provide insight on agency personality - and in so doing, begin to shed light on that most powerful and significant of all selection components - chemistry.

Our process also accepts the fact that no technology platform of itself can substitute for human expertise and consultation. That's why we intercept and assist clients during the final stages of their search to explain, question, clarify, and then assist in preparing the invitational RFP's. When all is ready, we handle the paperwork and extend the invitations. Our turnaround is generally 24-48 hours. Clients are comfortable with our role as observer and facilitator once invitations and confirmations are delivered.

Some 21st Century Search Tips:

In order to take full advantage of the latest Internet agency search technologies, consider the following:

Use an Internet agency search service funded by the agency or the client, not both.
Use those that offer an extensive range of search criteria (+400 data fields).
Use those where agencies have applied, rather than being included without permission.
Identify candidates using search algorithms, not just by a ranking, alpha-sort, geographic location or size.
Select an Internet service that uses algorithms to identify candidates.
Use directory data sparingly to prepare for your telephone interviews.
Don't rely on published client lists; better to avoid that topic at this stage.
Work with search professionals that have credentials in successful agency searches.
Work with professionals that will handle the invitational process to expedite your search.
Be fair, honest, forthright, professional and ethical.
Have some fun!
Final Thoughts:

The search for a new agency isn't something any client should get the "hang of!" Even done properly, it's an infrequent occurrence. That's why no one in the agency community expects the client to be an expert in this area, but they do look for honesty and integrity.

The client wants to conclude their agency search by selecting a "perfect" agency. To that end, be certain those who speak for your company do so from the most executive level. With the economy as it's been for the past few years, agencies have been hard-pressed to assimilate additional bus-iness from the best of new clients. Admittedly, this new economy is already changing workloads and attitudes. Agencyfinder's industry leaders and rising star agencies are much like you -- looking to pair up with the best and most appropriate new clients. Honesty, accuracy, proper attitude and professional courtesy will contribute to a satis-factory and financially rewarding outcome.

Dan kirk
Friday, June 25, 2004

Zoo The Whole Sales World is comprised of Sales gurus who claim to know all about sales and marketing. The SalesUniverse is full of players that look alike and are hard to differentiate between. Members from across the market space should look at the following metrics before selecting a partner or agency

Initially, marketing executives tell us they're pleased with the work their agencies are producing. So in a word, it appears clients ultimately end up selecting and partnering with what they refer to as "a great agency." At least until…

So why be unduly concerned with the agency selection process? What does it have to do with corporate finance? Because in and of itself, the agency selection process could be the most significant financial experience of your client/agency relationship. So the challenge is not so much to find and select the perfect agency (for we all seem to eventually get there), but to do so responsibly, with dispatch and efficiency.

The Perfect Agency:

Before we explore some fiscally responsible procedures, let's look at what constitutes the perfect agency. Most clients and agencies agree on the components:

1. Relevant experience,
2. Breadth and depth of capabilities,
3. On-point strategy,
4. Proximity,
5. Creativity,
6. And Chemistry.

Of course that's viewed from the client's eyes, with only chemistry likely to change in their view. Chemistry is that elusive "likeability" component; an expression of how the client and agency contacts get along, their respect and affinity for one another, a commonality of purpose, enthusiasm for the task at hand, and a common sense of direction and shared responsibility. Those who teach chemistry preach, "birds of a feather flock together -- in business." When players change, chemistry changes. Of all the components, everyone agrees chemistry is the one element that inevitably leads to change and an agency review.

The Perfect Search:

With an understanding and appreciation for daily costs, there's an incentive to develop and then follow a simple set of sequential steps:

Have valid reasons to dismiss the old before hiring the new.
Identify and assemble your "fixed & locked" executive search team.
Define team duties and responsibilities - how and who calls the shots.
Determine if you need assistance from a consultant, and for what.
Take measures to keep your search private and confidential.
Take time to carefully construct a list of your ideal agency criteria.
Use Internet technology to help identify all the qualified agencies.
Extend invitations, asking for a serious show of interest, not creative samples.
Screen initial candidates using telephone interviews.
Request relevant materials from candidates that impressed you.
Cut to a short list based on their submitted materials and phone interviews.
Hold your first face-to-face meetings - at the ad agency offices.
Identify finalists and then invite them to your offices.
Hold final meetings (presentations & negotiations with your team)
Select the most qualified and compatible agency.
Thank those you couldn't select; then notify the press.
The Perfect 21st Century Search:

The Internet gave rise to business models, processes and procedures that could not have existed without it. In 1997, we launched agencyfinder.com, the Internet's first and only on-line/off-line consulting service for client and agency matchmaking. The service evolved from new business consulting we were providing to advertising and public relations agencies in Europe and North America. Our challenge was to facilitate and help expedite what had become an expensive, time consuming and frequently frustrating process - for client and agency alike.

What we offered was a first - clients or consultants were able to take advantage of the far-reaching, cost-effective attributes of the Internet to search through a vast database of advertising, public relations and marketing firms that demonstrated their commitment to new business development and their desire to be found - by the right clients, for the right opportunities.

Agencyfinder.com is in some ways similar to an industry directory, yet with an opposing business model. Directory listings are free and the books are sold. Directory CD-ROMs and Internet adaptations use the same financial model - owning or searching carries a fee. Our objective was to give all qualified searchers free and immediate access to allow them to select "certified" agencies based on their database information. This allows agencies that took the initiative and applied for "certification" to pledge professional behavior, and to support the virtues of an expeditious, non-prejudicial selection and matching process.

Our business model is based on more than directing searchers to an agency's directory listing, but rather to collect and inventory informational and intellectual agency content to allow searchers to take advantage of our powerful search algorithms. That process narrows and selects candidates based on attributes (such as relevant experience, breadth and depth of capabilities, on-point strategy and proximity), and then on seven comprehensive essays and client case histories. These essays and case histories not only explain the agency's philosophy, creative development process, corporate culture, and view on the client/agency relationship, but they also provide insight on agency personality - and in so doing, begin to shed light on that most powerful and significant of all selection components - chemistry.

Our process also accepts the fact that no technology platform of itself can substitute for human expertise and consultation. That's why we intercept and assist clients during the final stages of their search to explain, question, clarify, and then assist in preparing the invitational RFP's. When all is ready, we handle the paperwork and extend the invitations. Our turnaround is generally 24-48 hours. Clients are comfortable with our role as observer and facilitator once invitations and confirmations are delivered.

Some 21st Century Search Tips:

In order to take full advantage of the latest Internet agency search technologies, consider the following:

Use an Internet agency search service funded by the agency or the client, not both.
Use those that offer an extensive range of search criteria (+400 data fields).
Use those where agencies have applied, rather than being included without permission.
Identify candidates using search algorithms, not just by a ranking, alpha-sort, geographic location or size.
Select an Internet service that uses algorithms to identify candidates.
Use directory data sparingly to prepare for your telephone interviews.
Don't rely on published client lists; better to avoid that topic at this stage.
Work with search professionals that have credentials in successful agency searches.
Work with professionals that will handle the invitational process to expedite your search.
Be fair, honest, forthright, professional and ethical.
Have some fun!
Final Thoughts:

The search for a new agency isn't something any client should get the "hang of!" Even done properly, it's an infrequent occurrence. That's why no one in the agency community expects the client to be an expert in this area, but they do look for honesty and integrity.

The client wants to conclude their agency search by selecting a "perfect" agency. To that end, be certain those who speak for your company do so from the most executive level. With the economy as it's been for the past few years, agencies have been hard-pressed to assimilate additional bus-iness from the best of new clients. Admittedly, this new economy is already changing workloads and attitudes. Agencyfinder's industry leaders and rising star agencies are much like you -- looking to pair up with the best and most appropriate new clients. Honesty, accuracy, proper attitude and professional courtesy will contribute to a satis-factory and financially rewarding outcome.

Dan kirk

jtjufvyimjh
Friday, June 25, 2004

Here how we strategically plan your Internet marketing campaign

van kurt
Friday, June 25, 2004

Email marketing your source for online marketing solutions. We can effectively position your products and services in front of millions of potential customers through the use of permission email marketing. Our team will work closely with you to optimize your campaign for the best performance.

tim hurl
Friday, June 25, 2004

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