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Communications Government Spam IT

Text Message Spammer Wants FCC To Declare Spam Filters Illegal 338

Posted by Soulskill
from the hello-sir-madam dept.
TCPALaw writes "ccAdvertising, a company purported to have 'a long, long, long history of pumping spam out of every telecommunications orifice, and even boasting of voter suppression' has asked the FCC to declare spam filters illegal. Citing Free Speech rights, the company claims wireless carriers should be prohibited from employing spam filters that might block ccAdvertising's political spam. Without stating it explicitly, the filing implies that network neutrality must apply to spam, so the FCC must therefore prohibit spam filters (unless political spam is whitelisted). In an earlier filing, the company suggests it is proper that recipients 'bear some cost' of unsolicited political speech sent to their cell phones. The public can file comments with the FCC on ccAdvertising's filing online."
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Text Message Spammer Wants FCC To Declare Spam Filters Illegal

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  • Sounds reasonable (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Ed Avis (5917) <ed@membled.com> on Wednesday December 12, 2012 @06:22AM (#42258685) Homepage
    This sounds reasonable to me - the telephone company has no business filtering phone calls, so it should not filter text messages either. Subscribers may choose to employ a spam-blocking service, which could be provided by other people than the phone company.
  • Re:Sounds reasonable (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 12, 2012 @06:24AM (#42258691)

    Yes,

    and together with this we should also change the following.
    If you receive unsolicited and unwanted email, the sender is criminally liable for e.g. stalking. If a company is the sender, tha liabilty is transferred to the CEO, the entire board of directors and all shareholders.

  • Re:Sounds reasonable (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mlk (18543) <michael.lloyd.le ... il.OOOcom minus > on Wednesday December 12, 2012 @07:01AM (#42258821) Homepage Journal

    > So should we remove all spam filters from e-mail, because spammers have the right of free speech

    I'm not sure that is quite what the troll is claiming, rather that ISPs should not filter the emails. You have the right not to listen (i.e. set up(1)) any spam filter you want. However the spammer has the free speech right to not be impeded in spamming the crap out of you(2) by the ISP as the ISP should not take any note of the content coming in, but just deliver it all equally.

    It is an interesting argument.

    1) I would take an "opt-in" to a ISP provided spam filter to be acceptable.
    2) Only in a political way, but I'm not sure on that.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 12, 2012 @07:53AM (#42259093)

    "Voter suppression" is typically an excuse to protect voter fraud.

    In many states, it is illegal to confirm that the person showing up to vote has the right to do so. I grew up in Cook County Illinois (Chicago area), and I've had dead relatives "vote". I've seen busloads of people who obviously didn't live in the precinct dumped at my local polling place to "vote". In the last Illinois primary, a reporter was able to get a ballot by claiming to be the United States Attorney General. He returned the ballot after proving his point, but if he had wanted to he could have "voted" as Eric Holder.

    Meanwhile, such harmless things as having a police officer directing traffic within sight of the polling place is often used as an excuse to claim "voter suppression".

    It's important to remember that any actual "voter supression" leaves behind real people with real complaints. That's hard to cover up. However, using dead and former voters to stuff the ballot box is a "victimless" crime (the dead don't complain), unless you care about the integrity of the vote.

  • Re:Car Analogy (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Sulphur (1548251) on Wednesday December 12, 2012 @08:00AM (#42259127)

    More like your car comes back from a service with adverts all over it. You complain and they say "don't try to infringe my freedom of speech". Then you notice that the cost of the adverts has been added to your service bill. They say "it is proper that recipients 'bear some cost' of unsolicited adverts".

    Attempts to remove the adverts cause the car to be disfigured and some even cause holes in the body. The warranty is voided and your insurance goes up as a commercial vehicle. The neighbors sue to have the junk removed, and the wife leaves for a used car salesman with ED pills.

  • Re:What's next? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by bbeesley (2709435) on Wednesday December 12, 2012 @10:15AM (#42260041)

    Do you really want your phone company deciding who can and cannot call you?

    While I generally loath spammers, I think this is the point that makes the net neutrality argument valid I am continually frustrated by my ISPs spam blocking. There is no opt out, I can't white list senders, and they won't disclose fully how they identify what is and is not spam.

    There have been several instances where senders emails to me simply disappeared with no indication to me or the sender that the message was discarded. I feel that my email is often too important to have my ISP arbitrarily discarding it in this manner.

    While I appreciate that my ISP is marketing this to me as a "feature" and they are somehow doing me a favor, the reality is they are just trying to lower their costs by mitigating spam and the burden it places on their servers and network.

    My preference would be for them to not block my spam for me, or at least give me a way to opt out of their blocking and let me manage it myself so I can have a stronger sense of confidence that messages sent to me are arriving as intended.

    Thus, while I don't agree that SPAM should be allowed, I do agree that allowing ISPs to block it should be disallowed.

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