If Mama Ain't Happy, Ain't Nobody Happy

dcstone writes "The Detroit Free Press reports that the failure of a Michigan law designed to protect children from adult email has disappointed Michigan parents who expected the state to protect their child from inappropriate email.

"What was the whole point in signing up if it's not doing any good? Is this just the legislature and the governor trying to look good and tough, but in the end, just kicking up dust?" said Talia Goetting, a Ferndale mother of an 8-year-old, who now scans her daughter's e-mails before allowing her to read them. "I'm doing what I hoped was going to be done by the registry. I feel like they're duping people."

Others are raising issues about the enforceability of the law and its impact on the rights of commercial speakers trying to reach their audiences via email.

A great opportunity to consider what it means to make promises to parents and the actual effectiveness of laws that control speech to protect the children.

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Forget the UN

It appears Ms. Goetting thinks that Michigan runs the Internet. Personally, I always thought that releasing a list of children's e-mail addresses was the kind of target marketing opportunity that spammers dream of.

Two Comments:

1) Aren't there significant safety concerns with regard to making a list of childrens e-mail addresses publically available? It seems it could be grossly misused

2) From the article:

"Meanwhile, the nation's first do-not-e-mail laws continue to draw scrutiny and warnings from marketing groups and affected businesses that say the cost of compliance with the law isn't practical and its penalties for violations are so stiff that it might discourage many smaller companies from e-mail marketing efforts altogether." (Emphasis mine)

Isn't that the point? To do away with unsolicited e-mail marketing to the greatest extent possible?

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