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What is wrong with sending a piece of spam?

After getting complaints about multiple consumers being spammed by Homes.com, we took a closer look. Not only was the Homes.com advertisement unsolicited, it also appeared to be false & misleading. Therefore, we informed Homes.com of our concerns. Here is an attempt to answer their question, "what is wrong with sending a piece of spam?"

From: Mary @homes.com
To: help
Subject: spammer of multiple consumers

Hello again, I have done some research and for the moment, it seems that the word SPAM is not as clearly defined as I had hoped.

I am sincerely interested in knowing why I receive junk e-mail ALL the time, but why it is illegal to send an e-mail to a person in a field related to our services, ( a real estate agent) through their personal website where their e- mail address is displayed.

I have not had ONE complaint from the agents who have received the note, many have taken a look, some have become happy clients--what's the harm? Please explain in English--it seems too broad to go through all the related sites that use a lot of legal jargon. Thank you again. Mary.


Dear Mary,

Quotes from the FTC (Federal Trade Commission):

"Unsolicited commercial e-mail -- "UCE," or "spam," in the online vernacular -- is any commercial electronic mail message sent, often in bulk, to a consumer with out the consumer's prior request or consent.

Spam imposes financial and operational costs on Internet service providers ("ISPs"), burdens consumers, and impacts e-commerce generally.

A third concern is with practices that are unwanted intrusions in our daily lives. Unwanted phone calls disrupt our dinner, and our computers are littered with spam. There are unwanted solicitations for pornography and other products many find objectionable. Individually, the injury is relatively small, but in the aggregate the harm can be great."

So, it would appear as though spam (or any unsolicited "pushed" advertisement) would violate laws in at least three separate fields:

1) When you send spam, it is against the laws of The United States of America. (It is our understanding that you can be sent to the penal system for this offense.)

2) When you send spam, it is against the laws of Economics. (It is our understanding that you can be put out of business for this offense.)

3) When you send spam, it is against the laws of humankind. The intrusion is a moral violation that results in the violation of another's "human rights." (It is our understanding that you can be sent to Hell for this offense.)

Sincerely,
Help Desk

P.S. When SPAM is also false & misleading, it violates a whole other set of laws.

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