Yahoo, AOL Crack Net Neutrality
America Online and Yahoo, two of the world’s largest providers of e-mail accounts, are about to start using a system that gives preferential treatment to messages from companies that pay from 1/4 of a cent to a penny each to have them delivered. The senders must promise to contact only people who have agreed to receive their messages, or risk being blocked entirely.
The Internet companies say that this will help them identify legitimate mail and cut down on junk e-mail, identity-theft scams and other scourges that plague users of their services. Thy also stand to earn millions of dollars a year from the system if it is widely adopted.
But critics of the plan say that the two companies risk alienating both their users and the companies that send e-mail. The system will apply not only to mass mailings but also to individual commercial messages like order confirmations from online stores and customized low-fare notices from airlines.
Saul Hansell. Postage Is Due for Companies Sending E-Mail. The New York Times. Feb. 5, 2006.
John C. Dvorak. Paid E-Mail and the Road to Perdition. PCMag.com. Feb. 6, 2006.
CopyCense™: K. Matthew Dames on the intersection of business, law and technology. A business venture of Seso Digital LLC.