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RE: Questions about Internet Packet Losses
From: Matthew Gering <MGering () Raima com>
Date: Wed, 15 Jan 1997 23:04:59 -0800


Seems to me the whole effort of setting up the organization and adding
the extra header is simply for the sake of making spamming -- or rather
not complying with a method for allowing spam to be filtered -- a
prosecutable offense.

I agree with the motive, but it seems a very round-about way. Also, it
is a cludge solution for SMTP spamming, and does not setup any sort of
structure for dealing with similar problems as the Internet evolves.

I do highly agree with making this a civil, or contractual offense, and
not a criminal act. I'd rather not see any government entity attempt any
jurisdiction over the 'net, however justified the particular law seems.

The problem with making it a civil offense around trademark and
misrepresentation issues is that enforceability will vary greatly
depending on the jurisdiction, especially trademark, and therefore does
not scale well the the global Internet.

Secondly I disagree with is making this enforcing body a private,
membership-based organization -- it may be subject to abuse.

What I think would work best, along the same lines and motivation, would
be council of sorts, perhaps with the EFF and IETF as the principle
members, that would draft a policy. That policy would be adopted by the
public exchange points as part of the legal contract for NSP's to
connect there, which would apply to the NSP, and everyone downstream of
them. It would therefore be incorporated into any connection contract
down the line.

By incorporating it into the connection contract, it falls under
contract law and is much more universal, and the abuser may be charged
with breach of contract, which is tied to their connectivity.

As for the particular fix for SMTP spamming, I would then suggest a
priority header.
[0 -- reserved] (emergency priority)
[1-3 -- private email]
[4 -- solicited distribution] (mailing lists, etc)
[5 -- unsolicited distribution] (spam)

SMTP server may do whatever it wishes with the header (ignore it,
implement a priority based queue, filtering ,etc), and the header is not
even required (but likely will be universally adopted to insure delivery
after a grace period), the only contractual obligation is that it cannot
be misrepresented.

I don't quite get the whole dual port deal.

        Matt


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