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July 11, 2008

You be the judge: what sentence should "Spam King" get?

This story, headlined "'Spam King' to be sentenced: Two-day hearing starts Friday for man who sent 90 million e-mails," provides the details on an interesting federal sentencing in Seattle.  Here are the basics:

The lineup of people to testify in the sentencing of the 28-year-old so-called King of Spam is so long that it will require an unusual two-day hearing beginning Friday in federal court.  Robert Alan Soloway, only the second person to be convicted of criminal spamming under the 2004 "Can-Spam" law, pleaded guilty in March to single counts of mail and e-mail fraud, and to tax evasion....

In the government's sentencing memorandum filed Monday, Soloway is said to stand out "worldwide for the volume and markedly malicious nature of his criminal spamming activity; the fraudulent 'spam promotion' sales scheme associated with it; and for brazen and even boastful claims that he is above the law and anyone -- even federal judges -- who would dare attempt to seek his compliance with it."

U.S. District Judge Marsha Pechman is expected to sentence Soloway following the conclusion of testimony slated for Monday.  The charges carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and more than $500,000 in fines. Prosecutors Kathryn Warma and Richard Cohen, both assistant U.S. attorneys for Western Washington, have asked for nine years in prison and a stiff fine in the $400,000 to $1 million range.

Soloway's attorney, Seattle lawyer Richard Troberman, responded with a recommendation of two years in prison at the Federal Prison Camp in Sheridan, Ore., and a less severe fine under $100,000. Troberman argues that the government's recommendation is disproportionate to the crime and wants Pechman to consider that his client suffers from behavior-altering conditions -- Tourette's syndrome, attention-deficit disorder and "oppositional defiant disorder" -- for which he takes medication.

Federal prosecutors sought the two-day hearing to provide experts, witnesses and victims from around the nation and overseas to explain the technologies and evidence schemes in light of the 2004 law, and demonstrate how victims were affected between 2003 and 2007.

What a great chance, dear readers, to provide (creative?) advice to a federal judge as she considers how to craft a sentence under 3553(a)'s diverse mandates.  Please suggest via the comments what kind of sentencing term you think fitting in this case (and you get extra Berman brownie points if part of the sentencing suggestion includes sanctions beyond imprisonment).

July 11, 2008 at 08:38 AM | Permalink


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Doug Berman at SL&P solicited comments regarding what sentence is appropriate for the "Spam King." He has gotten a lot of comments, 60 as of this writing. What is fascinating to me is that the commenters on this blog, who... [Read More]

Tracked on Jul 11, 2008 6:15:59 PM


Let Jesse Jackson administer the punishment. He knows how to take care of people who step over the line.

Posted by: AllenS | Jul 11, 2008 10:04:23 AM

They should set up an email account and give him a year for every spam message it receives in the first year.

Posted by: | Jul 11, 2008 10:16:31 AM

Well he broke the law 90 million times so give him one day jail time and $100 fine for EACH incident.

90,000,000 x 100 = $9 billion.
90,000,000 days = over 246,000 years.

That seems fair to me.

Posted by: TW | Jul 11, 2008 10:19:31 AM

"I always win ... regardless of the judgment amount ... losing is not an option, and I never ever, ever have to pay a single cent to anyone."

Whatever he gets, when he gets out he is going to do it again. I am not certain that helps with sentencing though. If I were the judge I would probably consider a Guideline range sentence. Also, if the medical/emotional conditions make the defendant incapable of law abiding behavior, how does that help his sentencing argument? Is the lawyer saying that even with medication, he can't control himself?

This guy has a sociopathic personality, in my humble opinion.

Posted by: stanley Feldman | Jul 11, 2008 10:24:25 AM

Glen Reynolds seems to think that staking to an anthill is out. I respectfully disagree, and think we should instead hold out for it. It can't be 'unusual', since this is the precedent-setter. And since anthill-staking is either the first or second thing that springs to mind for a punishment, how can it be 'cruel'?

Posted by: PSGInfinity | Jul 11, 2008 10:25:34 AM

[Journalist and Instapundit reader.] Transport the spam king back to the pre-computer age forever: Sentence him to refrain from using a computer, or having others use it for him, for the maximum length of time, at least 20 years, and require supervised use after that. Prison and fines are simply not enough.

Posted by: sbw | Jul 11, 2008 10:28:38 AM

Assuming for the sake of argument that "oppositional defiant disorder" is an actual disorder rather than simply a label for misbehavior, isn't that "diagnosis" just for kids?

Posted by: Kent Scheidegger | Jul 11, 2008 10:29:37 AM

From a very tired spam recipient ... He should have to hand write "I am so sorry for all the spam." 90 million times. When he's finished, he can get out of prison.

Posted by: FasterThanKudzu | Jul 11, 2008 10:32:19 AM

$90 million dollar fine.
Figure it took an average of 10 seconds to delate one of his spam emails. So let him stay in prison for 10s * 90 million = 28.5 years (more or less).

Oh and he gets a special diet: Spam and Herbal V!@Gr4...

Posted by: Francis Turner | Jul 11, 2008 10:33:29 AM

I disagree with PSGInfinity... it would be cruel and unusual for the ants. (biochem prof here via Instalanche)

Posted by: Jim Hu | Jul 11, 2008 10:34:01 AM

Please suggest via the comments what kind of sentencing term you think fitting in this case

Drawing and quartering.

Why, yes, I used to run a mailserver, why do you ask?

Posted by: rosignol | Jul 11, 2008 10:36:30 AM

How about a DHS shock bracelet [can't be cruel or unusual if the government is authorizing it for non-criminal passengers] with activation by email trigger, tied to an open spamable address?

Posted by: Don | Jul 11, 2008 10:40:31 AM

Why not co-opt his criminal tendencies to improve SPAM security? Let him do SPAM-filter breaking (you may notice that lots of spam comes with canned text to "spoof" the filters) and other (technical) stuff (the nature of which I'm completely ignorant) on a prison computer that logs every keystroke, then use the info on his techniques to evolve more efficient algorithms to keep the SPAM in the trash folder where it belongs.
I bet he'd do it voluntarily after being bored as heck in jail, and ayway it'd appeal to his monstrous (and probably sociopathic, as Mr. Feldman said above) ego. Moreover, it'd help transition him into working on our side, maybe setting him up for a position as a consultant on his release.

Posted by: Gray Proctor | Jul 11, 2008 10:41:36 AM

Email spam isn't the only form of junk mail. Fine him the million, and have him spend 20 years sorting and classifying paper junk mail. 15000 pieces per day is a little over one each two seconds in an eight hour day, so take a penny off his fine for every correctly sorted piece he handles over the 15000/day.

He claims to be crazy now. Just wait.

Posted by: Ed Nutter | Jul 11, 2008 10:43:19 AM

Let me echo Kent's question: What in the world is "oppositional defiant disorder?"

I have to guess it's a parody of the medical model of crime, in which no one is a thug (old-fashioned vocabulary) and they are instead "victims" of "urban survival syndrome" (new, enlightened vocabulary).

This stuff is enough to give junk science a bad name.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Jul 11, 2008 10:46:18 AM

It occurs to me that the co-opting approach would work better if he could get a long sentence but also possibly be paroled if he cooperates well. OF course, that's not an option in the Fed system, and I can't think of a way to design a similar set of incentives in the probation context.

Posted by: Gray Proctor | Jul 11, 2008 10:47:08 AM

Is it possible for the court to ban the guy from ever owning or using a computer again? And from hiring anyone to own or use a computer on his behalf? That would keep him off the Net as well as limiting his career options to non-management positions in the lawn care and pest control industries.

Posted by: Bugs | Jul 11, 2008 10:48:52 AM

I love the argument, "I have oppositional defiant disorder, which means I can't help that I'm an a**hole!" Who knew that being a colossal megajerk could be a defense in a court of law?!

Posted by: SK | Jul 11, 2008 10:52:45 AM

Isn't it fascinating how the comments on this blog are suddenly so tough on sentencing when the crime is one of which we have all been victims?

TW, I'd settle for one minute per spam. That would still put him away for life.

Bill, ODD is in the DSM, unfortunately. What's weird here is applying that "diagnosis" to an adult. That I have not seen before. It's a medical-sounding label for "rotten brat," but this guy's 28.

Posted by: Kent Scheidegger | Jul 11, 2008 10:56:31 AM


Posted by: | Jul 11, 2008 10:56:49 AM

The Byzantine approach would be to castrate him and blind him with a hot needle. English style would be hang, draw, and quarter--if so, be sure to take extra time at disemboweling him. But there's something particularly appealing about the death of a thousand cuts--or better, 90 million paper cuts.

Posted by: cdeboe | Jul 11, 2008 11:00:47 AM

1. Spam, bread, and water for 20 years.
2. A working computer with no email and only fake internet access, a punishment worse than the anthill.
3. The computer is a pc with various versions of virus infected Windows.
4. Whenever he opens his computer, he will encounter 20,000 spam messages that have to be deleted one at a time.
5. Every fifteen minutes, the computer displays a huge picture of a can of Spam.

Posted by: callejohan | Jul 11, 2008 11:04:49 AM

Isn't it fascinating how the comments on this blog are suddenly so tough on sentencing when the crime is one of which we have all been victims?

This is "pour encourager les autres."

Posted by: cdeboe | Jul 11, 2008 11:04:52 AM

House arrest - must watch reruns of The View 12 hours a day for one year.

No... too horrible. I guess an anthill is fine.

Posted by: | Jul 11, 2008 11:13:10 AM

Simple: set up a tanker with 90 million milliliters of waste, human since PETA would not allow animal, and provide the sociopathic moron a standard teaspoon; 5ml. As soon as he has consumed the ENTIRE TANKER he is free to go. IF he should experiance any emesis or diarrhea it must be collected, measured, and the amount deducted from his total consumed.

Posted by: RightWingRN | Jul 11, 2008 11:31:06 AM

However long the sentence (and 10 seconds per spam message seems reasonable), he should be forced to spend most of his waking hours reading and deleting spam messages.

That is, every waking hour he should receive a set number of spam messages on a non-web pc. In certain rare spam messages there should be information important to him. For example, does he want to eat lunch? Well, the exit code he had to punch to enable the door lock to be opened might have been in message #10,209 that day. Does he want the really annoying nails-on-chalkboard music stopped agaiin? Well, THAT code was on daily message #32,886 this afternoon. What? Toilet not flushing again ....

Posted by: jim2 | Jul 11, 2008 11:36:56 AM

extradite him to egypt for interrogation

Posted by: lkjnf39y39gh | Jul 11, 2008 11:38:49 AM

Kent, I agree with you -- never seen it in an adult. I think most journals would state that upon reaching adulthood, the diagnosis is no longer applicable because the "opposition" context has left. Instead, he would be diagnosed (if he met the criteria) with Anti-Social Personality disorder.

Posted by: NewFedClerk | Jul 11, 2008 11:40:52 AM


5 years of hard labor.

His hard labor is to configure and maintain the spam filter for Congress. Every piece of spam that gets through adds 1 day to his sentence. Every piece of legitimate email that gets caught by a filter costs him a day. The filter delay cannot exceed 5 seconds for any given piece of email or it considered to be legit email that is caught and adds to the sentence.

Basically make him do the job that he created the demand for.

As much as you hate spam, your mail administrator hates it even more.

Posted by: chris | Jul 11, 2008 11:42:07 AM

Sounds like he's suffering from a bad case of ICD (Internet Crime Disorder). Just drag him out behind the courthouse and shoot him. You woudn't wanna feed such scum to decent ants!

Posted by: McCarroll | Jul 11, 2008 11:42:51 AM

Jail him. Make him hand write out 90 million letters of apology. Let him out when he's done.

Posted by: rob sama | Jul 11, 2008 11:42:57 AM

The man has wasted millions of hours of peoples' time. Make him do something useful for us.

I say, make him sort mail at the post office, unpaid, for 20 years. Preferably the bulk mail.

Posted by: Jim | Jul 11, 2008 11:49:23 AM

Figure at the minimum he's wasted a minute of someone's time for each SPAM e-mail. So 90MM minutes or 171 years plus or minus a few days.

Seems fair tome.

Posted by: Dave D | Jul 11, 2008 11:51:15 AM

Afix him with a shock collar or similar device. Configure it to deliver a mild shock (what constitutes mild is open for debate)every time one of his victims hits the delete key on a registered email account he violated. Once for each violation. Let him roam the streets free after that. I imagine video of him twitching and screaming at random intervals as he walks down the street should also help to deter other spammers, and it sure will be good for a laugh in any case.

Posted by: Roborob | Jul 11, 2008 12:11:07 PM

I think it is very interesting that a number of persons who responded made the sentence proportional to the harm done to society with 10 seconds per junk mail the most popular factor. With good time credit that would be more like 5 seconds per mail or 14 years of prison. During that time he would be incapacitated and when he is released the technology he used would be equivalent to writing on stone tablets.

Posted by: John Neff | Jul 11, 2008 12:14:19 PM

Well, since he suffers from a number of "disorders," perhaps he could be taken out behind the barn and have his face "disordered" with a five-iron.

Then, he should have a long, thin glass cylinder inserted into his penis and broken. Then an acetylene torch could be discharged into his asshole, and then everybody who has ever received a spam email could crush his testicles. Then on to his lawyer.

I am not a defense attorney nor am I a prosecutor, professor, or student.

I am a database administrator.

Posted by: Darrell | Jul 11, 2008 12:20:15 PM

Print out all the spam he generated and drop it on him en masse.

Posted by: Dave | Jul 11, 2008 12:26:09 PM

8 years jail.

$400,000 fine

Confiscation of all proceeds of the crime

Prohibition from being within 10 metres of any programmable computing device, including embedded systems in cars, microwaves, toasters, phones, drink dispensers, aircraft etc etc for 25 years.

The last is based on the current laws restricting sex offenders from living within 1000 ft of bus stops, churches, schools etc. so there is some precedent.

ZEB - CompSci PhD candidate

Posted by: Zoe Brain | Jul 11, 2008 12:39:16 PM

I think we should outsource the punishment to the Saudis. I'm sure they can come up with some creative solution to stop his spamming.

Posted by: jvon | Jul 11, 2008 12:42:06 PM

I am for whatever punishment costs the taxpayers the most money.

Posted by: S.crotus | Jul 11, 2008 12:42:41 PM

I'm not sure the punishment I have in mind would be humanely possible without effectively being the death penalty.

Posted by: Jim Treacher | Jul 11, 2008 12:44:36 PM

Or humanly, even.

Posted by: Jim Treacher | Jul 11, 2008 12:45:25 PM



Of course a lot of these comments are facetious, but there does seem to be a point behind them.

On the other hand........doesn't this guy qualify as a "non-violent first offender" who, according to today's Washington Post, shouldn't be "warehoused?"

Posted by: Bill Otis | Jul 11, 2008 12:46:47 PM

I think the key to this, and to all white-collar crime, is to tally up the economic value of whatever has been stolen (in this case, tiny little pieces of his millions of victims' lives) and if the amount exceeds that which airlines are required to pay for the death of a passenger through negligence...

It should be done humanely, though.

Posted by: Jonathan | Jul 11, 2008 12:48:48 PM

$4.5M fine (a nickle per spam).

No prison time, but 30 years or so of probation with no access to the net. Any hint of violation of the probation terms, and he goes in the can, and the 30 year no-net clock re-starts.

Posted by: Dave | Jul 11, 2008 12:52:26 PM

Draw and quarter him.

Posted by: Gregory Howe | Jul 11, 2008 1:04:10 PM

I like the 10sec/spam message sentence. Question is what to do with him while incarcerated. It may be expensive to monitor him well enough to make some of the suggestions work (making him read spam messages, etc.), so maybe we should just put him in a soundproofed cell and have a text-to-voice unit read his own spam to him, 18 hrs/day!
(I'm an engineer and fairly heavy email user.)

Posted by: | Jul 11, 2008 1:08:47 PM

Minimal jail time, stiff fine, and then prevent him from using the internet ever again. They do it with sex offenders, why not here.

Posted by: Daniel | Jul 11, 2008 1:14:30 PM

All I want to do is to increase the tax burden on Americans. His crime is far worse than murder.

Posted by: S.crotus | Jul 11, 2008 1:18:31 PM

I'm in a lenient mood. Five seconds for each message sent. Confiscate all his profits from spamming and use that to pay for incarceration. Add a $400,000 fine. Then no access to any electronic device capable of connection to the internet - for life.

Posted by: Craig | Jul 11, 2008 2:10:25 PM

Very simple. Shoot him. Dead. He will never do it again and it might give the next guy in line pause. If it doesn't, shoot him too. Eventually, they will get the idea. Yes, I am absolutely serious and would do it myself without malice and with a perfectly clear conscience.

Posted by: MIke | Jul 11, 2008 2:28:36 PM

Aerospace manager here.

He must write a heartfelt apology to each and every person he sent a spam email to.


Though shooting him dead has a certain simplicity that appeals to me.

Posted by: Bombard | Jul 11, 2008 2:41:51 PM

Six months in the electric chair* ought to do it.

*chair must be "on."

(Non-practicing attorney)

Posted by: Tom | Jul 11, 2008 2:48:36 PM

Now we know why the death penalty is still so popular: SPAM.

So maybe I'm against the death penalty after having taken precautions against SPAM (very rare in my email). Maybe this guy sent me some but I'm not traumatized by it.

Posted by: George | Jul 11, 2008 2:55:11 PM

The anthill still seems appropriate to me. Any individual ant bite isn't all that cruel, is it? Just as any single spam message isn't all that much of an annoyance ...

Then there's always the punishment that William Goldman suggested for another miscreant:

Humperdink: To the death!

Westley: No, to the pain.

Humperdinck: [small pause] I don't think I'm quite familiar with that phrase.

Westley: I'll explain. And I'll use small words so that you'll be sure to understand, you wart-hog-faced buffoon.

Humperdinck: That may be the first time in my life a man has dared insult me.

Westley: It won't be the last. To the pain means the first thing you lose will be your feet, below the ankles, then your hands at the wrists, next your nose.

Humperdinck: — and then my tongue, I suppose. I killed you too quickly the last time, a mistake I don't mean to duplicate tonight.

Westley: I wasn't finished! The next thing you lose will be your left eye, followed by your right —

Humperdinck: — and then my ears, I understand. Let's get on with it —

Westley: WRONG! Your ears you keep, and I'll tell you why — so that every shriek of every child at seeing your hideousness will be yours to cherish — every babe that weeps at your approach, every woman who cries out, "Dear God, what is that thing?" will echo in your perfect ears. That is what "to the pain" means. It means I leave you in anguish, wallowing in freakish misery forever.

Posted by: Mike G in Corvallis | Jul 11, 2008 3:01:43 PM

I propose: turning large rocks (90 million pounds) into small rocks. With a hammer. (There's historical precedent for chain gangs.) I hear that Afghanistan has plenty of said rocks.

Posted by: Nathan | Jul 11, 2008 3:26:16 PM

I wonder if the comments are so rabid today because we've all had to deal with spam or if there's a general sentiment that white-collar crimes ought to be punished more severely?

Posted by: Gray Proctor | Jul 11, 2008 4:03:01 PM


Sorry. When I said "Death," I suppose I meant "Death."

Posted by: | Jul 11, 2008 4:20:47 PM

I'm not so draconian. Fine him maybe $100,000 and sentence him to time served, plus twenty years closely supervised probation.

With a few little wrinkles in the probation:

A new computer is installed in a corner of his living room. With state-of-the-art networking to the Internet. Kept up-to-date. Turned on and booted 24 hours a day.

If he lays a finger on it, that finger is promptly broken by his probation officer.

Hey, I figure mental torment is suitable punishment for causing others mental aggravation.

Posted by: Nemo | Jul 11, 2008 4:37:18 PM

Billy Mays commercials, for the entire term in prison, 24/7. No volume control button.

Posted by: William Gillmore | Jul 11, 2008 5:59:10 PM

Tie him nekkid to a stake and make his penis much, much longer?

Posted by: PersonFromPorlock | Jul 11, 2008 7:05:30 PM

plomo - from the argentinian 'plomo y plato?'

.22 cal would be about right, in the temple.

Posted by: anon | Jul 11, 2008 7:24:38 PM

Just a hefty fine, and a 10-year sentence to use a computer configured with speakers turned up high and set to play the sound of ear-splitting microphone feedback every time an email hits his junk mail folder.

Posted by: Squatch | Jul 11, 2008 9:43:11 PM

One half minute for each spam he sent out. That's around 60 years.

Posted by: Brian Macker | Jul 12, 2008 12:29:46 AM

He is released from prison when he puts a shine on wrought iron.

(pre) occupation: Blogger

Posted by: Alan Kellogg | Jul 12, 2008 5:21:07 AM

This whole thing simply amazes me. We get spammed every day driving to work with ugly billboards and flashing lights. Get spammed with tv commercials. Get spammed in our mail boxes with ads, get spammed on our telephone with telemarketers But as soon as you get spam in your email everyone wants to pull out the pitch forks and sharpen them.

I honestly see no difference between email spam and the other types of spam out there. When service providers provide email accounts to people common sense tells me they have to deal with consequences of providing such services to people. Just like we do with every other form of communication advertisers can reach us through. Businesses like internet service providers shouldn't get such protection handed to them when we have no say in any other type of media.

Don't get me wrong, I hate spam, its annoying. But taking years away from someone's life by sending him to prison over something that is perfectly acceptable in traditional forms of media doesn't seem just.

Posted by: Mark | Jul 12, 2008 6:23:07 AM

I honestly see no difference between email spam and the other types of spam out there. When service providers provide email accounts to people common sense tells me they have to deal with consequences of providing such services to people. Just like we do with every other form of communication advertisers can reach us through.

Keep thinking, it'll come to you. In all other cases, the advertiser bears the cost of the advertising. Direct mailers pay the postage, radio advertisers buy commercial time (or you can pay yourself for commercial-free music on Sirius) and billboard advertisers pay the landowners for the privilege. You are welcome to buy that land yourself and take the signs down.

Spam is theft of services and theft of time from people who have already said "no." It is a violation of the right to freedom of association. "Common sense" says that time stolen from people with finite lifespans can never be replaced, and the rational punishment for spammers (or any large-scale thief, violent or not) should be proportionate payment in kind. "Common sense" says that crime is deterrable if proper negative incentives are set in place. There are things China could teach us, if we had wisdom to learn.

Posted by: Jonathan | Jul 12, 2008 8:18:08 AM

"time stolen from people with finite lifespans can never be replaced, and the rational punishment for spammers (or any large-scale thief, violent or not) should be proportionate payment in kind."

By this argument anyone who wastes your time has committed a crime against you? Pure-D foolishness, is all that is.

There's no benefit at all from sending the guy to prison. What's the point if he can be kept from repeating the offense by other means and actually pay back some measure of his debt to society? More appropriate is strong probation with substantial and issue-specific community service requirements. I like the idea of making him volunteer as a govt email administrator combating spam.

That said, my expectation would be that he'll get hefty prison time via a guideline sentence.

Posted by: Gritsforbreakfast | Jul 12, 2008 9:22:46 AM

I'm rethinking this. After he gets out of the slammer, after he is forbidden from touching a computer, his re-entry should be as a substitute letter carrier, delivering unsolicited Third Class (Standard) regular mail for the USPS on a walking route.

Posted by: sbw | Jul 12, 2008 11:09:31 AM

For years I believed that crucifixion would be the best punishment for spammers, but right now I'm thinking that this might tend to make a martyr out of him by investing his death with too much dignity. Plus, it's cruel and unusual punishment, so it's impractical.

I think he should be made to read aloud every last piece of spam he sent -- with his eyeballs monitored and his voice tracked to make sure there's no goofing off or missed words. According to my calculations, he should be able to easily read 250,000 emails a year (12 hours a day, eight days a week, one minute per email) -- one million every four years. If he's 28, and he lives to 88, he will have read sixty million of the emails.

Which means that if he lives to 118, he might just finish the task.

I suppose probation could then be considered -- only under certain conditions....

(A blogger who's an attorney in remission.)

Posted by: Eric Scheie | Jul 12, 2008 1:10:36 PM

Sorry, I made a math error there! He'll never make it -- barely a dent! At age 88 he will only have read only 12 million of the 90 million emails.

Scratch the possibility of probation.

Posted by: Eric Scheie | Jul 12, 2008 1:16:20 PM

As a web company who uses and offers email services with my hosting ( http://www.stuffdone.com ) I find it offensive to have to waste time and bandwidth to accommodate illegal or unwanted junk emails. I consider such messages to be a theft of bandwidth because I have to pay for the traffic that my web servers use. In addition, given that greedy ISP's are on the verge of charging customers for the bandwidth they use, SPAM will be stealing from individuals as well when they see their monthly bill climb because of increased junk email traffic.

Congress has done little to help. The "can spam" act is pretty much a joke. Congress with the aid of ISP's like AT&T spy on us all the time, including emails. So why not at least do something positive with all that illegal syping...trace back and prosecute spammers.

I would like to see a message sent...don't send spam or go to jail.

Posted by: Paul Kruger | Jul 12, 2008 1:35:36 PM

He should get the max prison sentence and fine, of course. In addition, he should be given access to a computer, a 486, that before he can do anything with it, it must finish downloading 90,000,000 Spam emails first. Each and every time.

Posted by: Bane | Jul 12, 2008 6:55:45 PM

(12 hours a day, eight days a week, one minute per email)

Eight days a week? O_o

Posted by: rosignol | Jul 13, 2008 6:37:13 AM

One bullet.
Cheap, permanent and a good deterrent to others.

Posted by: Reg | Jul 13, 2008 7:16:05 PM

(Helpdesk Tech)

Seize any assets gained from his spamming, and no computer access for an additional 10 years.

Posted by: Jack | Jul 14, 2008 4:42:11 PM

Kent, Bill, and to a lesser extent NewFedClerk (who gets credit for recognizing the connection with anti-social personality disorder)

I suggest next time before you comment on a mental health diagnosis you consult the DSM IV (in this case, pp 91-94 first) - then you won't make fools out of yourself.

Its a real disorder with specific diagnosis criteria (one criteria which seems to be specifcally appropriate for the case of a spammer - "often diliberately annoys people")

And yes, adults can have it to again quote the DSM IV p. 94 "criteria are not met for conduct disorder and if the individual is age 18 years or older, criteria are not met for Antisocial Personality Disorder."

As far as punishment - it should definitely include, lifetime prohibition of using any spam filtering software.

Posted by: Zack | Jul 16, 2008 5:01:07 PM

I say don't jail the spammers -- jail the cyberbullies who arbitrarily censor comments on blogs and other websites. I have never been bothered by e-mail spam -- it just takes a click on the mouse to delete it.

Posted by: Larry Fafarman | Jul 17, 2008 9:56:16 PM

Girls spent more time than boys on social networking sites, listening to music and reading.

Posted by: Discount Louis Vuitton | Feb 12, 2011 2:57:07 AM

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