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California Court Holds CAN-SPAM Applies To Social Networking Communications

Discussion in 'FaceBook' started by fun4uoc, Apr 19, 2011.

  1. fun4uoc

    fun4uoc Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    This could open up a new can of worms.

    The CAN-SPAM Act makes it unlawful for persons to initiate the transmission of commercial electronic mail messages that contain materially false or misleading header information. CAN-SPAM defines ?electronic mail message? as ?a message that is sent to a unique electronic mail address.? It further defines ?electronic mail address? as a ?destination, commonly expressed as a string of characters, consisting of a unique user name or mailbox and a reference to an Internet domain, whether or not displayed, to which an electronic mail message can be sent or delivered.?

    On March 28, 2011, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California held that the CAN-SPAM Act?s (the ?Act?) restrictions on the transmission of unsolicited commercial e-mail (?UCE?) extend beyond traditional e-mail to cover communications to other electronic destinations, including Facebook users? walls, news feeds, and in-network messages. Facebook Inc. v. MaxBounty Inc. (N.D. Cal., No. 10-4712, 3/28/11). The ruling is one of the most expansive judicial interpretations, to date, of the types of messages falling within the scope of the Act.

    District Court Judge Jeremy Fogel noted that this issue was one of first impression in the Ninth Circuit, directly addressing the issue of whether the Act applies to social networking communications that are not delivered to an ?inbox? comparable to traditional e-mail. Prior California District Court decisions have concluded that the statute reaches ?e-mail-like? messages transmitted through the MySpace social network. Those courts reached their result by looking at the Act?s legislative history, noting that the Act was designed to ensure the convenience and efficiency of electronic messaging systems, and saw no reason in the statute for its coverage to be limited to e-mail. Thus, broadening that analysis, Judge Fogel held that the Act reaches other types of social networking communications, as well. Such messages require Facebook to engage in routing operations, therefore, applying the Act to those communications is consistent with Congressional intent to mitigate misleading commercial communications that ?overburden communications infrastructure.?

    Facebook alleged that MaxBounty violated the law by enrolling affiliates in unfair and deceptive ad campaigns which involved the creation of fictitious Facebook profiles with promises of free products. To sign up, users had to agree to notify each of their Facebook friends, among other things. Those notifications were transmitted based on a Facebook subscriber?s account settings, but could potentially have been delivered as a posting on the user?s wall, in his or her news feed, to a user?s Facebook message inbox, and to users? external e-mail addresses. The court concluded that each type of message could fall under the Act.

    The Act was intended to apply broadly, and its restrictions on misleading header information reach all communications sent to unique electronic destinations, not just to traditional e-mail.
     
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  2. confined

    confined Regular Member

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    so the shit has hit the fan so to speak, for U.S. people who post UCE on sites.. maybe even dating sites... makes it that much harder. sigh.
     
  3. fun4uoc

    fun4uoc Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Yeah I knew it was only a matter of time before it went from a T.O.S. violation to being an actual crime.
     
  4. goodguy333

    goodguy333 Junior Member

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    Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo:eek:
    Sorry for the rant...
    Finger's crossed
    Cheerios
     
  5. auuuu

    auuuu Elite Member

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    Can Spam Act are only for USA...isn't? :)
     
  6. facebookdude

    facebookdude Elite Member

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    I'm not in the U.S so I shouldn't care but just wtf. That's making the Can-Spam act way too fuckin broad. Soon we won't be able to say anything. Once the govt fucks the real world up, the internet will be the only thing we can hold on to.

    Freedom ftw!
     
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  7. Riseing

    Riseing Regular Member

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    Andddddddddd now I'm in Germany.
     
  8. milton

    milton Regular Member

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    To correct you, it is not a crime. It is a civil penalty. You can't go to jail over it.
     
  9. jensen.ol

    jensen.ol Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    In my country, spamming is legal lol. Not 100% legal actually.
    It is just there are bombs exploded everywhere here and the goverment is too corrupt. So they don't give a f*ck about spamming.
     
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  10. fun4uoc

    fun4uoc Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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  11. Crazy

    Crazy Jr. Executive VIP

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    Seems like ever since the FCC's plan to regulate the internet, cited as in regard to Net Neutrality, it's been nonstop craziness on the web with the FTC getting involved now as well. Poker sites being seized? CAN-SPAM applying to every form of communication on the 'net? Scary times right now, stay cautious.
     
  12. PROvk

    PROvk Newbie

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    in my country spam is a violation of the Advertising law. You can't go to jail for spam. But you really can go to jail for braking accounts, mails, etc.
     
  13. MadScientist

    MadScientist Newbie

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    New World Order?