British Euro MP Graham Watson is making a last minute bid to try and stop European Parliament legislation that some in the industry claim will legalise spamming.
Liberal Democrat MEP Graham Watson has tabled an amendment to the ecommerce bill which is currently being considered in the European Parliament in Brussels that would outlaw sending of junk email, called spam.
At the end of last month the European committee voted in favour of an ammendment allowing the free passage of spam across its members' borders. A final vote by the European Parliament is scheduled for this week.
The bill is intended to create a foundation for broad European regulations on ecommerce and communication. At present the bill wants to have all spam messages tagged as commercial email. Anti-spam campaigners, however, maintain that the messages still have to be downloaded and want spamming banned totally.
Watson claims that spamming is costing British companies around 5 billion pounds a year. He believes it would be irresponsible for MEPs to vote for the bill as it stands which would allow unknown sources to bombard consumers with junk email if they so wanted.
UK companies are already having problems with spamming. Last month, portal Virgin Net filed a landmark lawsuit in the UK against Surrey businessman Adrian Paris, trading under the company name ProPhoto UK, for setting up a number of accounts through which he allegedly sent over 250,000 unsolicited emails through Virgin Net. Virgin Net is seeking damages for breach of contract and trespass.
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