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Spam, Spam, Spam
September 4, 2003 8:26 AM   Subscribe

Italian spammers face jail. The ruling follows estimates by the European Commission that spam e-mails cost EU companies approximately 2.25bn euros in lost productivity last year.
posted by MintSauce (7 comments total)

A doubly interesting ruling considering the alleged bias of the Italian media and government.
posted by MintSauce at 8:30 AM on September 4, 2003

wouldn't Italian spammers be called "proscuitto-ers" or "pepperonites," or something?
posted by jonmc at 8:39 AM on September 4, 2003

If spammers get jail for wasting company time, I'd suggest the same for people who use the work phone or office computer for personal matters. While spam sucks, people with no clue about computers talking about computer legislation suck tons more.
posted by magullo at 8:43 AM on September 4, 2003

It's harder to catch the spammers than to catch the businesses who use their services; the latter have to be exposed in a number of ways in order to transact business with their customers. I don't think we're going to make much headway in fighting spam until we act to take the money out of it. Just as a person who hires a killer is guilty of murder (or some technical variant thereof, depending on the laws in your country), a business that engages a spammer is essentially guilty of spamming. A few frozen bank accounts and prosecutions of the spammers' clients would probably put a bigger dent in the problem than any other measure we've seen to date.

It's open to abuse, of course -- you could attack a rival by spamming on their behalf, as it were -- but I rather expect that would come out in the wash and anyone who tried it would end up pretty sorry.
posted by George_Spiggott at 9:12 AM on September 4, 2003

If they jailed you for using the work computer for personal reasons MetaFilter wouldn't exist.
posted by xmutex at 9:29 AM on September 4, 2003

xmutex: You're assuming none of us get paid for hanging out here.
posted by alms at 9:33 AM on September 4, 2003

While spam sucks, people with no clue about computers talking about computer legislation suck tons more.

You're assuming the Italian parliament is as clueless about computers as the US government...?
(Well, at least I haven't heard of any Italian officials trying to pass laws that let the government zap your PC...)

Not being snarky, just trying to be fair :)
posted by bhayes82 at 11:20 AM on September 4, 2003

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