Diverse Groups Unite Against AOL 'Email Tax'

Discussion in '2006 Archive' started by poncho, Mar 5, 2006.

  1. poncho

    poncho
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    Niko Kyriakou, OneWorld US Fri Mar 3, 1:40 PM ET

    SAN FRANCISCO, Mar 3 (OneWorld) - Groups ranging from gun owners to aid charities and cancer researchers have entwined to oppose the world's biggest Internet service provider in its plan to charge a fee for email--a move the groups say would put nonprofit groups and small businesses at a disadvantage.

    America Online (AOL), which claims 29 million-plus U.S. and European users, has announced plans to charge senders of mass email a fee to avoid its spam filters and to have messages delivered directly to users' inboxes with a high-priority designation.

    Supporters of the 'certified email' plan--also known as the 'email tax'--said it would assure senders that material of importance to them would get through to addressees. Because the service would cost per delivery, they added, it would serve to reduce the overall volume of email clogging users' inboxes by encouraging senders to be more selective about what messages to send in the first place.

    Opponents--50-plus groups ranging from Gun Owners of America to the AFL-CIO labor federation, and Craig Newmark, founder of the free classified advertising Web site Craigslist.org, one of the busiest addresses on the Internet--have urged AOL to reconsider.

    Claiming a combined membership of more than 15 million people, the opposition runs the gamut from liberal activists MoveOn.org and Common Cause through to the conservative RightMarch.com, which defines its mission as ''leading the virtual march from the right.''

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  2. hillclimber

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