Home > 104th Congressional Bills > S. 1232 (is) To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to exclude length of service [Introduced in Senate] ...

S. 1232 (is) To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to exclude length of service [Introduced in Senate] ...

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  1st Session
                                S. 1231

To eliminate the burdens and costs associated with electronic mail spam 
     by prohibiting the transmission of all unsolicited commercial 
electronic mail to persons who place their electronic mail addresses on 
  a national No-Spam Registry, and to prevent fraud and deception in 
 commercial electronic mail by imposing requirements on the content of 
                all commercial electronic mail messages.



                             June 11, 2003

  Mr. Schumer introduced the following bill; which was read twice and 
   referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation


                                 A BILL

To eliminate the burdens and costs associated with electronic mail spam 
     by prohibiting the transmission of all unsolicited commercial 
electronic mail to persons who place their electronic mail addresses on 
  a national No-Spam Registry, and to prevent fraud and deception in 
 commercial electronic mail by imposing requirements on the content of 
                all commercial electronic mail messages.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,


    This Act may be cited as the ``Stop Pornography and Abusive 
Marketing Act'' or the ``SPAM Act''.


    Congress finds the following:
            (1) Electronic mail is an increasingly valuable tool for 
        personal and commercial communication. Unsolicited commercial 
        electronic mail (UCE), commonly known as spam, however, has 
        become an impediment to efficient electronic mail use and 
        creates problems for all types of users and organizations, 
        including Internet Service Providers, individual users, and 
        corporate organizations.
            (2) UCE often contains objectionable, fraudulent, and 
        offensive content. The Federal Trade Commission reports that 
        over 60 percent of all UCE contains false, misleading, or 
        deceptive information. Nearly one-fourth contains sexually 
        explicit imagery. Parents have little ability to prevent these 
        images from reaching their child's electronic mail in-box.
            (3) Consumers increasingly ignore or delete legitimate 
        commercial messages as they face an ever increasing amount of 
        UCE. If the vitality and force of the Internet and electronic 
        mail are to be preserved as a tool for commercial 
        communication, UCE must be curbed.
            (4) UCE is also a severe financial concern. Lost 
        productivity, increased spending on technology systems and 
        personnel, and personal frustration are some of the costs 
        associated with UCE.
            (5) Despite the increasing deployment of anti-spam services 
        and technology, the number and size of spam messages are 
        growing faster than ever. In 1999, the average electronic mail 
        user received just 40 pieces of UCE per year. In 2003, the 
        number is expected to pass 2,500. Experts estimate as much as 
        70 percent of electronic mail traffic qualifies as UCE.
            (6) Existing anti-spam service solutions alone are 
        insufficient to stop the growth of spam. Despite the fact that 
        Internet Service Providers spend millions of dollars each year 
        on research, filtering and other anti-spam software, and larger 
        servers to deal with the ever expanding volume of UCE, current 
        technology alone cannot control the spam problem.
            (7) Federal law does not specifically address UCE and 
        leaves Federal and State law enforcement and consumers with 
        inadequate redress for the problem.


    The purposes of this Act are to--
            (1) preserve electronic mail as a vital tool in interstate 
        commerce by--
                    (A) reducing the costs associated with UCE;
                    (B) reducing the amount of UCE; and
                    (C) eliminating false, misleading, and deceptive 
                content in all commercial electronic mail; and
            (2) give consumers control over their in-boxes.


    In this Act:
            (1) Affirmative consent.--The term ``affirmative consent'', 
        when used with respect to a commercial electronic mail message, 
                    (A) the message falls within the scope of an 
                express and unambiguous invitation or permission 
                granted by the recipient and not subsequently revoked;
                    (B) the recipient had clear and conspicuous notice, 
                at the time such invitation or permission was granted, 
                            (i) the fact that the recipient was 
                        granting the invitation or permission;
                            (ii) the scope of the invitation or 
                        permission, including what types of commercial 
                        electronic mail messages would be covered by 
                        the invitation or permission and what senders, 
                        if any, other than the party to whom the 
                        invitation or permission was communicated would 
                        be covered by the invitation or permission; and
                            (iii) a reasonable and effective mechanism 
                        for revoking the invitation or permission; and
                    (C) the recipient has not, after granting the 
                invitation or permission, submitted a request under 
                section 204 not to receive unsolicited commercial 
                electronic mail messages from the sender of the 
            (2) Commercial electronic mail message.--The term 
        ``commercial electronic mail message'' means any electronic 
        mail message the primary purpose of which is to advertise or 
        promote, for a commercial purpose, a commercial product or 
        service (including content on an Internet website).
            (3) Commission.--The term ``Commission'' means the Federal 
        Trade Commission.
            (4) Domain name.--The term ``domain name'' means any 
        alphanumeric designation which is registered with, or assigned 
        by, any domain name registrar, domain name registry, or other 
        domain name registration authority as part of an electronic 
        mail address on the Internet.
            (5) Electronic mail address.--
                    (A) In general.--The term ``electronic mail 
                address'' means a destination (commonly expressed as a 
                string of characters) to which electronic mail can be 
                sent or delivered.
                    (B) Inclusion.--In the case of the Internet, the 
                term ``electronic mail address'' may include an 
                electronic mail address consisting of a user name or 
                mailbox (commonly referred to as the ``local part'') 
                and a reference to an Internet domain (commonly 
                referred to as the ``domain part'').
            (6) Electronic mail service.--The term ``electronic mail 
        service'' means a service for the transmission of electronic 
        mail messages that receives the content of, and recipient list 
        for, electronic mail messages that it sends from the person or 
        entity procuring such services. For purposes of this Act, to be 
        an electronic mail service, such service must retain 
        identifying information about the person or entity procuring 
        services and cooperate with law enforcement actions brought 
        under this Act.
            (7) Functioning return electronic mail address.--
                    (A) The term ``functioning return electronic mail 
                address'' means a legitimately obtained electronic mail 
                address, clearly and conspicuously displayed in an 
                electronic mail message, that--
                            (i) remains capable of receiving messages 
                        for no less than 30 days after the transmission 
                        of such commercial electronic mail message; and
                            (ii) that has capacity reasonably 
                        calculated, in light of the number of 
                        recipients of the electronic mail message, to 
                        enable it to receive the full expected quantity 
                        of reply messages from such recipients.
                    (B) An electronic mail address that meets the 
                requirements of subparagraph (A) shall not be excluded 
                from this definition because of a temporary inability 
                to receive electronic mail messages due to technical 
                problems, provided steps are taken to correct such 
                technical problems within a reasonable time period.
            (8) Header information.--The term ``header information'' 
        means the source, destination, and routing information, or 
        information authenticating the sender, associated with an 
        electronic mail message, including the originating domain name, 
        originating electronic mail address, information regarding any 
        part of the route that an electronic mail message travels or 
        appears to travel on the Internet or on an online service, or 
        other authenticating information.
            (9) Implied consent.--The term ``implied consent'', when 
        used with respect to a commercial electronic mail message, 
                    (A) within the 3-year period ending upon receipt of 
                such message, there has been a business transaction 
                between the sender and the recipient (including a 
                transaction involving the provision, free of charge, of 
                information, goods, or services requested by the 
                recipient); and
                    (B) the recipient was, at the time of such 
                transaction or thereafter, provided a clear and 
                conspicuous notice of an opportunity not to receive 
                commercial electronic mail messages from the sender and 
                has not exercised such opportunity.
            (10) Initiate.--The term ``initiate'' means to originate an 
        electronic mail message or to procure the origination of such 
        message, regardless of whether the message reaches its intended 
        recipients, and does not include the actions of an Internet 
        access service or an electronic mail service used by another 
        person for the transmission of an electronic mail message for 
        which another person has provided and selected the recipient 
        electronic mail addresses. For purposes of this Act, more than 
        1 person may be considered to have initiated the same message.
            (11) Internet.--The term ``Internet'' has the meaning given 
        that term in the Internet Tax Freedom Act (Public Law 105-277, 
        div. C, title XI, Sec. 1101(e)(3)(c)).
            (12) Internet access service.--The term ``Internet access 
        service'' has the meaning given that term in section 231(e)(4) 
        of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 231(e)(4)).
            (13) Protected computer.--The term ``protected computer'' 
        has the meaning given that term in section 1030(e)(2) of title 
        18, United States Code.
            (14) Recipient.--The term ``recipient'', when used with 
        respect to a commercial electronic mail message, means the 
        addressee of such message. If an addressee of a commercial 
        electronic mail message has 1 or more electronic mail addresses 
        in addition to the address to which the message was addressed, 
        the addressee shall be treated as a separate recipient with 
        respect to each such address.
            (15) Registered electronic mail address.--The term 
        ``registered electronic mail address'' means an electronic mail 
        address which has been placed on the No-Spam Registry 
        administered by the Federal Trade Commission by the owner of 
        the electronic mail address.
            (16) Routine conveyance.--The term ``routine conveyance'' 
        means the transmission, routing, relaying, handling, or 
        storing, through an automatic technical process, of an 
        electronic mail message for which another person has provided 
        and selected the recipient addresses.
            (17) Sender.--The term ``sender'', when used with respect 
        to a commercial electronic mail message or an unsolicited 
        commercial electronic mail message, means a person who 
        initiates such a message and whose product, service, or 
        Internet web site is advertised or promoted by the message, but 
        does not include any person, including a provider of Internet 
        access service or electronic mail service, whose role with 
        respect to the message is limited to routine conveyance of the 
            (18) Unsolicited commercial electronic mail message; uce.--
                    (A) In general.--The terms ``unsolicited commercial 
                electronic mail message'' and ``UCE'' mean any 
                commercial electronic mail message that is sent to a 
                            (i) without prior affirmative consent or 
                        implied consent from the recipient; or
                            (ii) to a recipient who, subsequent to the 
                        establishment of affirmative or implied consent 
                        under clause (i), has expressed, in a reply 
                        submitted pursuant to section 204, or in 
                        response to any other opportunity the sender 
                        may have provided to the recipient, a desire 
                        not to receive commercial electronic mail 
                        messages from the sender.
                    (B) Exclusion.--Notwithstanding subparagraph (A), 
                the term ``unsolicited commercial electronic mail 
                message'' does not include an electronic mail message 
                sent by or on behalf of one or more lawful owners of 
                copyright, patent, publicity, or trademark rights to an 
                unauthorized user of protected material notifying such 
                user that the use is unauthorized and requesting that 
                the use be terminated or that permission for such use 
                be obtained from the rights holder or holders.



    (a) In General.--The Commission shall establish a registry 
(referred to in this section as the ``Registry'') in which any person 
that does not wish to receive unsolicited commercial electronic mail 
may register electronic mail addresses.
    (b) Registration.--The Commission shall permit any person to 
register the electronic mail addresses of the person, or the electronic 
mail addresses over which the person has authority or control, 
including registration by electronic mail, on the Registry.
    (c) Registration by Parent.--The Commission shall permit a parent, 
legal guardian, or other person with control or authority over 
electronic mail addresses to which minor children have access, to 
register such addresses.
    (d) Prohibition on Unsolicited Commercial Electronic Mail to 
Registered Addresses.--Except as otherwise authorized by the Commission 
in regulations prescribed under this section, it shall be unlawful for 
a person to initiate UCE to a registered electronic mail address.


    (a) Enforcement Powers.--
            (1) In general.--The Commission shall enforce this section 
        as part of its duties under the Federal Trade Commission Act 
        (15 U.S.C. 41 et seq.).
            (2) Reporting of violations.--For purposes of the 

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