Microsoft Proposes Plan to Slam Spam
Gates outlines legislative plan to create incentives for e-mail marketers to adopt best practices and become certified as trustworthy senders.The anti-spam bandwagon is gaining speed as industry players counter pending bills with legislative proposals of their ownincluding one from Microsoft Corp. Wednesday. Proposals vary widely, covering a range of measures from jail time for repeat spammers to the imposition of a tiny charge for sending e-mail, and the Senate is slated to sort through all the options and vote on one before summers end. In a letter to Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz. and Ernest Hollings, D-S.C. Wednesday, Microsoft Chairman and Chief Software Architect Bill Gates outlined a legislative plan to create incentives for e-mail marketers to adopt best practices and become certified as trustworthy senders. Under Gates plan, the Federal Trade Commission would provide a safe harbor for companies that join an FTC-approved self-regulatory group. The legislation would name the basic components of industry guidelines regarding notice and choice.
The Microsoft proposal, which would preempt state laws, would also provide broad rights to ISPs to prosecute spammers, and at the same time clarify that ISPs are not obligated to block or carry any given categories of e-mail.