Dealing with spams


Omer Zak (
Sat, 17 May 1997 09:18:37 +0300 (WET)

I believe that the following problem is relevant to any FAQ maintainer,
whose FAQ includes E-mail addresses of people to be contacted, and this
information is useful to readers of the FAQ.

I maintain the DEAF-L FAQ.Most of the FAQ consists of World-Wide Web
pages.There is also a mini-FAQ with subscription/unsubscription
instructions and pointers to further information, which is periodically
posted to bit.listserv.deaf-l and news.answers.

The DEAF-L list is full of debate between people who hold opposite points
of view.The main purpose of the FAQ is to avoid rehash of old
arguments, by saving them up and making them available to newbies.

As such, the WWW pages contain excerpts of messages posted to DEAF-L.To
guarantee proper credit, the names and E-mail addresses of the original
contributors are usually put next to their messages.

The problem is that several E-mail spammers abuse those E-mail addresses
and send junk E-mail to the original contributors of those messages as
well as the webmaster (me).As a result, some of them request that their
E-mail messages be removed from the WWW pages, thus diminishing the
usefulness of those pages as sources for contact information for people
who have legitimate need to contact those people.

My plan for combatting the E-mail spammers is (among other activities,
such as complaining to their ISP) to insert the following notice (near to
the copyright notice) in my WWW pages:

<h3>Warning to E-mail spammers</h3>
This document and other documents linked to it contain E-mail addresses
of people who contributed to those documents.
If you use those addresses for the purpose of sending them junk E-mail
messages (for purposes like, but not limited to, promotion of your
business, advertising a WWW site not related to deafness,
or of your religious ideology), then by the act of sending them E-mail
messages you agree to pay each addressee the equivalent of US$500.- plus
any legal fees incurred while trying to collect this amount of money.

The questions are:
1. Is there any better way to express the above warning so that it'll be
legally binding?
2. Do you know any lawyer in USA who would be willing to initiate
legal action as needed, under terms of contingency payment (as far as
I could determine, most, if not all, spammers are from USA).

--- Omer
Internet E-mail:
WWW home page:
DEAF-L FAQ home page:
Closed Captioning home page moved to:

WARNING: Any and all junk E-mail sent to my address(es) will be returned to
the postmaster of the offending site for inspection.By sending me junk
E-mail messages, you agree to pay me US$500.- per message received plus any
legal fees incurred while collecting the amount due from you - for the service
of downloading it to my PC.