Tuesday, March 16, 2010

San Francisco Lawyer Awarded $7K From e-Mail Spammer

Bob Egelko writes in The San Francisco Chronicle:

A judge has awarded a San Francisco attorney $7,000 in damages in a rare trial under California's anti-spam law - $1,000 for each unsolicited, misleading commercial e-mail he received.

Daniel Balsam, who started suing spammers even before he graduated from law school in 2008, filed suit against Trancos Inc., a Redwood City advertising company, over a series of ads that showed up in his personal e-mail in-box in 2007.

The "from" line in each e-mail named a nonexistent source - for example, "Your Promotion," "Paid Survey" or "Join Elite." At least one message had a subject line, promising recipients $5 to complete a survey, that the judge described as misleading. None of the advertising e-mails named Trancos, which sent all the messages.

The ads violated California's 2004 anti-spam law, Judge Marie Weiner of San Mateo County Superior Court said in a March 10 ruling. The law prohibits sending an uninvited commercial e-mail from California, or to a California recipient, that misrepresents either the source or the subject.

More here.


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