Man gets 9 years for spamming: hooray!

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The BBC reports that a Jeremy Jaynes, apparently the world’s eighth most prolific spammer has been sentenced to 9 years in jail. All we need is for a few more jail sentences like this and perhaps the spam will stop.

I hate spammers, and would like to see them banged up as terrorists. My particular problem is with ‘comment spam’, which I have to spend a few minutes of every day clearing out of this weblog. If it weren’t for MT-Blacklist which automatically filters out thousands of such things for me even before they arrive, I would have certainly had to ditch this site altogether.

The same is probably true for thousands of others who use blogging as a way of exercising their right to free speech, and prefer to read the kind of news collected by Metafilter rather than endless scribble about the pope, Jordan, prince Charles, Michael Jackson or Wayne Rooney.

All it needs is for a few more spammers to be jailed, and be banned from ever using a computer again pour encourager les autres and the problem would probably disappear in a matter of weeks. If 70% of emails are spam, as the BBC report suggests, then personal and commercial productivity would benefit, as well as our right to communicate unimpeded, yet I don’t see spam-busting on the agenda of any of the political parties. Jaynes apparently shored up $750,000 per month from his spamming activities. How difficult can it be to follow the money and shop more of these people?

Although the UK joined with the US & Australia in an anti-spam pact last year, the onus to fight spam still rests with companies and individuals, who have to shell out for spam-filtering software, and deal with what remains manually. Meanwhile we have an information commissioner and a Freedom of Information Act, neither of which seems to be stopping the problem at source through the threat of litigation or sentencing.

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