A Weblog About Topics and Issues Discussed in the Book Spam Kings by Brian McWilliams

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February 4, 2005

MCI criticized for spamware

Sue You Net image

[Update: Spamhaus has issued a detailed statement about MCI and other ISPs who knowingly host spammers.]

The dreaded proxy lock problem has hit the mainstream media. MSNBC had a story Thursday, and the Washington Post published a write-up Friday.

Interesting comment in the Post story from MCI, which is listed as the most spam-friendly ISP in the world, according to Spamhaus. Steve Linford of Spamhaus complained that MCI-UUNet is hosting Send-Safe.com, the site of one of the companies selling spamware that has added the proxy lock feature. From the Post:

Timothy Vogel, who heads MCI's legal team for technology issues, said that UUNet does not host the site but instead leases the Internet address to a company that in turn hosts Send-Safe's Web site.

More important, he said, MCI does not want to censor Internet content. If MCI had evidence that the Send-Safe company was spamming, that would violate MCI policy.
But merely advertising its product is a form of speech that should not be censored, Vogel said.

Amazing backbone from this big Internet backbone provider!

The company that leased the IP space from UUNet appears to be Microsys Technologies, a spamware developer with addresses in Florida and Ohio. Other sites hosted at that same IP address as send-safe.com include amazing-bulk-email.com, Emailbroadcaster.com, Emailemailemail.com -- you get the idea.

Spam Kings readers know that Linford has been battling against UUNet since 1998, when the company threatened to sue him for criticizing its lax response to spammers on its network. (The graphic above was created by an unknown artist during that period.) A copy of the first page of UUNet's 1998 threat letter to Linford is here.

Posted by brian at February 4, 2005 9:04 AM


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