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c't magazine declares war on spam

Leading German magazine hits out at EU proposals

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Leading German computer magazine c't is spearheading a campaign against the legalisation of unsolicited junk e-mail -- or spam -- by the European Union. Legislation currently being considered by the EU is calling for all spam to be clearly labelled so that people can see immediately what is bona fide e-mail and what is an unsolicited piece of e-mail. By taking this approach the EU will, in effect, be legalising spam. The editor-in-chief of c't, Christian Persson, is calling on all Net users to sign a petition demanding EU officials take a closer look at the proposals. The petition will go live on Monday 1 March. While the petition doesn't call for commercial spam to be outlawed completely, it does demand that users should not be bombarded with junk e-mail unless they specifically request it. Moreover, it says that users should not be discriminated against simply because they have chosen not to accept spam. Persson maintains that spam filters aren't up to the job of weeding out junk mail and that it shouldn't be up to the individual users to sift through their mail. Instead, the onus should be on the company sending out the spam to mail it only to those people who have specifically said they are willing to receive it. "I know what a problem spam is for people on the Web," said Persson. "I want as many people as possible to sign this petition so we can try and get Brussels to change its mind." ®

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