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  1. #1
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Eliot Spitzer, the New York state attorney general, and Microsoft plan to file civil suits today charging one of the nation's most prominent e-mail marketers with fraud stemming from sending unsolicited commercial e-mail, commonly known as spam, according to several people involved in the cases.

    The suits are expected to name three companies, including OptInRealBig, which is run by Scott Richter, who has been widely identified as a major source of bulk e-mail and has been an outspoken defender of his marketing practices. Mr. Richter said Wednesday that he had been notified by the state attorney general's office and by Microsoft that charges were imminent. He said that the accusations were baseless.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    <font size="2" face="Verdana">Haiko


    The secret of success is constancy of purpose. ~ Disraeli
    </font></p>

  2. #2
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    Scott Richter has been sued many times and still SPAMS like crazy. He always manages to manipulate the 1st Amendment to his advantage. The outcome of this case will be very interesting since Microsoft is involved.

    BradleyB

  3. #3
    Affiliate Summit Guy Shawn Collins's Avatar
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    This is an issue that affiliates and affiliate managers ought to be watching closely.

    If OptInRealBig and Synergy6 end up losing, then it's going to set a precedent that affiliate programs are legally liable for the actions of their affiliates.

    And if that happens, we'll be seeing a whole lot more regulations from affiliate programs about where and how their programs can be promoted.

    Shawn Collins
    ClubMom, Inc.

    http://www.affiliatemanager.net - tools and resources for affiliate managers

  4. #4
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    Ulta.com just said today in email to end all email advertising and promote them only through your site. I guess an option that many do already is if you have a newsletter to link back to your site first, instead of to the merchants site.

    I work in lounge pants

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador phillyburbs's Avatar
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    Shawn:

    Interesting take on the possible fallout. As usual, it will probably depend on how the decision is written, as well as follow-up case law. Of course, you're probably right in that many merchants will take defensive measures to protect themselves.

    Karl Smith
    phillyBurbs - Your Internet Starts Here
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    Beware Parasiteware! It is stealing your money!
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  6. #6
    Affiliate Marketing Consultant Andy Rodriguez's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by phillyBurbs.com:
    you're probably right in that many merchants will take defensive measures to protect themselves.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Yep, definitely. I can see a one page agreement to be signed by all affiliates in the merchants program stating that they will only send to opt in visitors, opt in rules will need to be published clearly on affiliate sites and that the'll agree to hold the merchant harmless.

    Luckily, most of the programs i deal with are not prone to spam....although i have my share of email marketing partners out there.

    Will be interesting how all this unfolds...

    AndyRodriguez.com
    Affiliate Program Management
    and Consulting Services
    P: (305) 412-3512
    C: (305) 785-4524
    E: doc@andyrodriguez.com
    W: www.andyrodriguez.com
    AIM: AffiliateDoctor

  7. #7
    Affiliate Addict Robert484848's Avatar
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    Anyone who sends E-mail with out a double opt-in system is SCUM IMHO

    "I did'nt get where I'm at today by worrying about how I'm going to feel tomorrow."

  8. #8
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    From Azoogle ...

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Good Afternoon,
    Recent events have been molding the current e-mail marketing landscape, and have prompted us to update our publishers and review our network guidelines.

    As many of you know the CAN-SPAM act has been signed into law and will take effect on Jan 1st 2004. We STRONGLY encourage each and every one of you to read over ALL if it's components, http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108s877.html .

    Any affiliate that does not follow all of the laws set forth in this new law will be immediately removed from the AzoogleAds network. For many of you who have not yet heard, Microsoft and The NY Attorney General have slapped both Syngery6 and Scott Richter (CPAEMPIRE/OPTINREALBIG), with very serious lawsuits. You may read about this here:

    http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/p...icrosoftPR.asp

    To help understand the requirements that you will have to abide by in order to remain a part of the AzoogleAds network, we have broken them down into easy to understand bullets:

    1. You are 100% responsible for any offer that you re-broker to any third party mailers. We will hold the account owner responsible for any activity that violates the laws abiding email marketing. If you broker offers from AzoogleAds to 3rd party mailers, please ensure that you are in compliance with all laws and contact your account manager.
    2. Any and all email sent utilizing campaigns available on AzoogleAds must include a valid un-subscription link.
    3. Any and all email sent utilizing campaigns available on AzoogleAds must include valid headers. You must be sending email through servers that YOU own. In no way are you permitted to proxy or use servers that you do not control to distribute email.
    4. Every subject line used for your advertisements must be straight forward and legit. No false subject lines. Use ONLY the subject lines that are provided to you. If you wish to make any changes, you must contact your account manager to gain approval.
    6. You must not intentional misrepresent the sender addresses in any of your mailings. Every piece of mail sent must come FROM YOU. Do not use a “made up” from email address or From Field. Use YOUR LIST NAME.
    7. You may not obscure your transmission paths or server names in any manner whatsoever.
    If you have any questions about ANY of these points, and would like to discuss them, please give either Alex, or Joe a call at: 905-946-0300. We will be more the happy to go over the new laws and how you need to abide by them.

    Please make no mistake, we will be holding to these points very carefully, any illegal, or fraudulent activity will result in account closure and withholding of funds. AzoogleAds has every intention to uphold and abide by the laws set forth, and aims to set a higher standard in the online advertising industry. If you have any uncertainty about the mailing practices of your mailing host or any 3rd party that you use to distribute your mailings, please contact your account manager prior to utilizing any future AzoogleAds offers.

    Thank you for your time,

    - The AzoogleAds Team

    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    <font size="2" face="Verdana">Haiko


    The secret of success is constancy of purpose. ~ Disraeli
    </font></p>

  9. #9
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    FROM S6, an "internal memo" ...

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Fellow S6ers, You may have seen press today relating to pending civil lawsuits involving Synergy6 and others. We’ll all be getting questions and comments from our partners, vendors, clients, etc. Please direct all inquiries to Justin and myself.



    The case is rather interesting as it speaks to how much responsibility an advertiser has with respect to affiliate marketing - often several entities removed from the party who is actually marketing the offer.



    We want to provide our perspective on this situation and convey to you that we’re confident that we have done nothing illegal or unethical.



    It is critical that each of you know the facts:



    · Synergy6 asked a publisher to market an offer. The publisher had signed an agreement to play by the rules, etc. and Synergy6 and the publisher had been doing business together for several years with no reported problems. Synergy6 had agreed to pay the publisher a fee for every lead delivered.



    · In order to drive volume, the publisher "sub-contracted" the lead generation, making the offer available to a network of affiliates on the publisher's proprietary affiliate network. Various other publishers ("affiliates"), many of whom are unaffiliated with Synergy6, can log in to this affiliate network and download the Synergy6 offer. The publisher would collect money from Synergy6 and pay the affiliates that drove leads.



    · An unscrupulous individual downloaded the Synergy6 offer from the publisher's affiliate network and used illegal email tactics to market it. The spammer was not doing business with Synergy6, but was paid by the publisher.


    Similarly, Synergy6 has been able to download offers for Microsoft and the New York Times from an affiliate network just like OfferStream. This means that a spammer could do the same thing. So if a spammer were to download these offers and use illegal email tactics - then should Microsoft and the New York Times be charged as well? We think not.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    <font size="2" face="Verdana">Haiko


    The secret of success is constancy of purpose. ~ Disraeli
    </font></p>

  10. #10
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    Yes, this is a huge issue!

    <font size="2" face="Verdana">Haiko


    The secret of success is constancy of purpose. ~ Disraeli
    </font></p>

  11. #11
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Having read my 582 spams for today I'm all for removing the word FREE from e-mail. Give me 500 digital eStamps per month and reduce my ISP bill by 5 bucks and I'm a happy camper running 100+ web sites as webmaster.

    The more merchant's sleezebag e-mail partners take it in the shorts the more valuable those domain bound showcase links become. If it isn't double verified Opt-In it's junk mail by the DMA/IAB perps. Use the affiliate channel properly merchants and require value-add reseller efforts and pay through the nose for premium targeted traffic. It's less expensive then paying the attornies -fines and waiting for commissions checks to arrive for use in the prison commissary.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  12. #12
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Should I lock my doors Haiko as I've roasted all these Opt-Out spam marketers fueling the advertising mindset of this industry for years. Ever since the Ad industry gobbled up all the VC funds and squander it on worthless crappy online and media Ads for .coms I've had it in for them. Less ethical as a group then the lawyers they now fear are coming their way. I refuse any and all Ad Agency web work after they made me jump thru hoops on site changes so they could mark up my work at 20 times what they paid me.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  13. #13
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    Thank god for you Mike, you were the only one speaking out against spam...

    Anyone ever visit forums like humorweb? I just mixed it up with quite a few people there, they trying to justify single opt-in lists, while at the same time bemoaning the problems getting hosted because of their single opt-in lists. The place is a trading house for spam, with very little to do with humor sites.

    I see some networks around here, that offer .02-.10 for single opt lists, or actions to signup. Where do they think those names are coming from? There is no reason not to double opt-in a user, unless you are trying to stuff a list.

    Chet

  14. #14
    I like traffic lights
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    >Recent events have been molding the current
    >e-mail marketing landscape, and have
    >prompted us to update our publishers and
    >review our network guidelines.

    One would have thought that any ethical mailing company would have had those rules in place already, with or without the new law.

    ****************************
    Jimmy James Inc. fan club membership # 3312

    "But Jimmy had fancy plans, and pants to match"

  15. #15
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    The stock price for Dupers just took a tumble...
    New York and Microsoft File Suits on E-Mail Spam
    By SAUL HANSELL
    Published: December 19, 2003


    The attorney general of New York, Eliot Spitzer, filed a civil lawsuit yesterday against three marketing companies, accusing them of sending fraudulent e-mail messages, and said that he would seek penalties so large that they would drive each company out of business.

    At a news conference in New York, Mr. Spitzer singled out Scott Richter, the president of OptInRealBig, a Westminster, Colo., concern that he said was the third-most-prolific sender of junk e-mail, or spam.

    **Super Flash Advertisement inserted here(soon to be banned by browser plug-in trademark licence violation against MacroMedia ..already costing Microsoft 521 Millon smackeroos + 111 milion in back interest"


    "We will drive them into bankruptcy," Mr. Spitzer said. "Therefore, others will not come into the marketplace because they will see there is no viable business model here."

    An assistant attorney general, Stephan Kline, said in an interview that the total penalty to be sought would be in the tens of millions.

    Microsoft said yesterday that it would file a similar suit in Washington State because much of the spam was aimed at its Hotmail e-mail service. It is seeking $18.8 million. "Any money that is left over after the attorney general's suit, we will happily go after," Microsoft's general counsel, Bradford L. Smith, said.

    Mr. Richter said that he was not involved in sending the fraudulent mail. Rather, he said, he was only a middleman for the other companies named in the suit: Synergy6, a New York marketing firm, and Delta Seven, a Dallas mailing company that sent e-mail promoting a Web site run by Synergy6. "We are standing up and fighting," Mr. Richter said in an instant-message interview.

    Mr. Richter has a thriving marketing business that Mr. Spitzer said brings in several million dollars a month. He is the only one of the three that seems to have any significant assets for the state and Microsoft to pursue. Synergy6 has been struggling financially of late. Justin Champion, its president, said many of its clients canceled accounts after the lawsuits were filed. Mr. Champion said the suits were unfair because he did not know of any fraudulent activity of Delta Seven.

    Delta Seven appears to be out of business. Paul Boes, one of its owners, has filed for bankruptcy protection. Mr. Boes and his partner, Denny Cole, did not return e-mail messages seeking comment.

    Documents filed by the attorney general state that the campaign by Delta Seven, which the state said sent tens of millions of e-mail messages, was barely profitable.

    It sent messages offering free gifts - like Girls Gone Wild DVD's, Chia pets and diamond earrings - to people who would join an e-mail list at AmericanGiveaways.com, a site run by Synergy6. This offer drew responses from 23,830 people. As a result, Synergy6 paid Delta Seven a commission of $7,149.

    State prosecutors assert that these are ill-gotten gains because the mailings used improper practices. The subject lines and other information were forged, the prosecutors said.

    Moreover, Microsoft said that it had received 8,000 messages from Delta Seven at so-called spam traps that it operates - Hotmail accounts that have never been used.

    Prosecutors also accused Delta Seven of obscuring the origin of the mail by breaking into computers owned by others to relay the mail. As a way to establish the state's jurisdiction, the case centered on a computer owned by Jarjo Promotions of New York City. But documents said that Delta Seven sent e-mail through a grade school in Korea, an Internet provider in Slovenia and the ministry of finance in Kuwait. A central issue will be how much responsibility Synergy6 and OptInRealBig have for any misdeeds of Delta Seven.

    Mr. Richter and Mr. Champion said they acted properly when they learned of complaints about Delta Seven. But both Mr. Spitzer and Microsoft argued that the case showed that all companies were knowingly part of the same scheme. "If people think they can do this and hide their tracks and make money," said Mr. Smith of Microsoft, "a new day has dawned."

    Don't worry folks Microsoft- Attorney Generals -FTC and 300 million pissed off consumers and e-mail account have no power when cut off at the pass by the Network's protective TOS, Duper mailing partnership agreement and eyeball hungry merchants using 3rd part buffer AM firms. Their are no need for rules as we can easily monitor and govern our actions using the honor system.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

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