US ad, mkting trade groups urge Congress to pass spam law

NEW YORK: The American Association of Advertising Agencies (AAAA), the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), and the Direct Marketing Association (The DMA) have issued an open letter. This urges Congress to immediately pass national anti-spam legislation.




The open letter underscores an increased collaboration among the three groups to curb the growing spam epidemic and protect legitimate commercial e-mail communication. Last month, the AAAA, ANA and the DMA released a set of practices for businesses that defend and enhance the viability of legitimate e-mail marketing.

The letter reads, "Spam is a serious and complicated problem. It requires a national solution to protect the national marketplace. We, urge you to pass the CAN-SPAM Act (S. 877) or the Reduction in Distribution of Spam Act (H.R. 2214). Immediate action is required to go after the bad guys on spam and avert a crisis that will bring legitimate electronic commerce to a screeching halt."

"37 inconsistent state spam laws and proposals for a do-not-e-mail list or labeling represent a knee-jerk reaction to the spam crisis. These approaches do nothing to reduce the intrusion of spam piling up in consumers’ inboxes. What’s worse, they mandate inconsistent standards that make compliance by honest businesses extraordinarily burdensome. If Congress fails to act, commercial e-mail communication—a promising vehicle for conducting commerce—will be severely injured. Based on the latest US Census Bureau data, some 12 per cent of the current $138 billion Internet commerce marketplace is driven by legitimate commercial e-mail. This translates into a minimum $17.5 billion spent in response to commercial e-mails in 2003 for bedrock goods and services such as travel, hotels, entertainment, books, and clothing."

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