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What kind of a precedent is this setting???


Anti-spam Group to Keep Company on List

Fri Sep 15, 5:50 PM

CHICAGO - The head of an organization that fights unwanted bulk e-mail said Friday that an Illinois company will remain on its block list despite a court order and a steep monetary judgment.

A federal judge on Wednesday ordered the Spamhaus Project, an international anti-spam organization, to pay $11.7 million in damages to Wheeling-based e360 Insight LLC for blacklisting the company.

U.S. District Judge Charles Kocoras also ordered Spamhaus to post a notice on its Web site stating that e360 Insight is not a spammer.

The judge's order noted that Spamhaus initially defended the case, but then withdrew. Without a challenge from Spamhaus, the judge wrote, "we find that Spamhaus has wrongfully placed Plaintiffs on its blacklist of companies who have sent spam e-mail."

Spamhaus suggested it did not defend the case because it did not believe a court in Illinois had jurisdiction over the U.K.-based organization.

Steve Linford, the head of the U.K.-based Spamhaus, insisted the company sends spam that is illegal in the United Kingdom and said Spamhaus will continue to list the Illinois company on its block list.

Internet service providers use Spamhaus lists to help identify spammers and block e-mail coming from their Internet addresses. The listing hurt the Illinois company's ability to do business as a direct e-mail marketer, the lawsuit claimed.

"spam is a big problem, but the way Spamhaus administers its blocking technology is not a reasonable solution to this problem," said Dave Linhardt, president of e360 Insight.

His company signs up people for direct marketing e-mails through its BargainDepot.net Web site, and the people who sign up can control how often they receive e-mails and stop them entirely any time, Linhardt said.

"Our client does not send spam e-mails. Our client only sends e-mail messages to persons opting in to a list where they agree to accept e-mail announcements," Bart Loethen, a Chicago attorney representing e360 Insight, said Friday in a written response to The Associated Press.

Linford said Spamhaus has no offices, agents or business connections in Illinois.

"The Illinois court very simply had no jurisdiction," he wrote in an e-mail to the AP.

Loethen said if Spamhaus ignores the ruling "we will seek alternate means of enforcing the judgment through the court system in the U.S. and potentially the U.K."

"Spamhaus is thumbing its nose at the U.S. courts by failing to participate in the process, failing to provide information in the court case, and failing to comply with the orders of the court," Loethen said.

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no cite, no links, ???? try this one .... http://news.spamcop.net/pipermail/spamcop-...hread.html#1038 ....

and bringing things up to date (well, kind of --> Updated 2006-06-24 ) .... http://thespamdiaries.blogspot.com/2006/09...-lawsuites.html which then points back to http://www.spamhaus.org/legal/answer.lasso?ref=1 .. which also includes the same phrasing as seen around these parts ....

(False) Claim: Spamhaus blocks Linhardt/e360Insight from sending email out via the Internet thereby causing harm to Linhardt/e360Insight's business.

This statement is false. Spamhaus does not block anyone from sending email. Spamhaus operates a mail filter advisory system which allows Spamhaus users (and ONLY Spamhaus users) to reject incoming email at the point of ingress into their private networks from email senders which Spamhaus advises do not fully comply with Spamhaus' policy for acceptance of inbound email. Mr. Linhardt can send as much email as he likes to anyone on the Internet, just not to Spamhaus users.

The latest entry is actually pretty humorous .... http://www.spamhaus.org/legal/answer.lasso?ref=3

Although meaningless for Spamhaus, which as a British organization not subject to Illinois court orders is listing Linhardt's company E360 Insight on its SBL spam blocklist as usual, the Illinois ruling shows that U.S. courts can be bamboozled by spammers with ease. As spamming is illegal in the United Kingdom, an Illinois court ordering a British organization to stop blocking incoming Illinois spam in Britain goes contrary to U.K. law which orders all spammers to cease sending spam in the first place.
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And Mike Easter provided in the newsgroups;

From: "Mike Easter"

Newsgroups: spamcop (see http://forum.spamcop.net/scwik/SpamCopNewsgroups )

Subject: Re: Spammers sending spam claiming court judgment against blocklist

Date: Sat, 16 Sep 2006 12:20:39 -0700

References: <eehb7k$5nu$1[at]news.spamcop.net> <eehfh3$9kv$1[at]news.spamcop.net>

OTOH, the winning plaintiff has a different point of view

http://www.e360insight.com/case_history.html Case History

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FYI, this case involves the same judge who made another Internet decision a few years ago:


but this was eventually rectified in a further decision:


and on a non-Internet related case, this same judge delivered a well-deserved smackdown decision to former U.S. Attorney General Ashcroft when he was trying to invade the privacy of some women who had abortions:


Isn't Google fun?


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...but this was eventually rectified in a further decision:

Looks like the first two were the same case and same judge. The first article merely removes the ISPs from the complaint, the second shows the companies that were required to make restitution. ISPs were merely carriers not viewed as responsible for content (methinks).

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More people should sue these internet spam blocking companies. I agree with that judge.

Then you are part of the spam problem.

The internet works on etiquette, not law. Blocking is the internet equivalent of the 'cut direct' - the Miss Manners' way of dealing with rude individuals who are insensitive to the needs and feelings of others.

Miss Betsy

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What kind of a precedent is this setting???

Honestly, it really doesn't set any kind of precedent. It was nothing more than a default judgement for the plaintiff because the defendant didn't show up. Since the defendant does not do business in Illinois, have offices in Illinois, or an agent in Illinois, they were correct to ignore this lawsuit, as there is no jurisdiction.

I'm willing to bet that if this were to show up in a court with jurisdiction, spamhaus would show up to defend themselves and would almost certainly win since all the facts are on their side.

More people should sue these internet spam blocking companies. I agree with that judge.

I personally don't know of any internet spam blocking companies. What companies are you referring to that block spam on the internet? I know of several that publish lists of IP addresse, ISPs, and/or individuals that are known to send spam, be open relays, be open proxies, be part of a dynamic IP range, or meet any number of other criteria, but these are simply lists. It is up to the receiving ISP to decide which lists it wants to use for what purposes, the list publishers have no control over it.

This would be like trying to hold a phone book publisher responsible because a serial killer used their phone book to select his victims.

Or better yet, suing a credit reporting agency because you couldn't get financing for a car because you have poor credit. Try that one and see if you don't get laughed out of the court room, and required to pay court costs.

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  • 6 months later...

I really hope Silverstein wins, that would prove that there IS justice in the world. It would be even better if it was enough of a judgement for Linhardt to have time to sit in an 8x8 box for a few years and think about what he has done ;)

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