IN THE COURTS: Zip and Spam


Zip and Spam

California Supreme Court Rules Zip Codes Are Private
The Song-Beverly Credit Card prohibits a retailer from requiring or requesting that a consumer provide certain personal information. In a surprise decision, the Supreme Court held that a consumer’s zip code fell within the reach of the statute. As there are already several class actions pending on the matter, retailers would be wise to evaluate their information collection procedures as it pertains to California.

California Court of Appeals Reverses Spam Preemption Ruling
Spamigator and nominal ISP Hypertouch won a reversal of a trial court summary judgment ruling that the California spam statute was preempted by the CAN-SPAM Act since it went beyond common law fraud. The court explained:
we conclude that the CAN-SPAM Act’s savings clause applies to any state law that prohibits material falsity or material deception in a commercial e-mail regardless of whether such laws require plaintiff to prove and plead each and every element of common law fraud.

FTC Brings Action Against Text-Message Spammer
The Federal Trade Commission brought its first SMS case against Phillip Flora who n one 40-day period sent more than 5.5 million spam text messages, a “mind boggling” rate of about 85 per minute, every minute of every day. The filing is significant since, unlike commercial email, consumer consent is required before sending SMS messages under the CAN-SPAM Act.