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01-16-2009, 05:15 AM
AT&Tís ĎAmerican Idolí Spam Stunt Backfires

AT&T spammed a ďísignificant numberí of its 75 million customersĒ yesterday with text messages advertising the premiere of American Idol. AT&T also pissed off a significant number of its 75 million customers in the process, and the companyís justification for the blitz isnít exactly making AT&T sound smart when it comes to understanding what qualifies as spam.

From the New York Times:

"Mark Siegel, a spokesman for AT&T WirelessÖ said the message went to subscribers who had voted for ďIdolĒ singers in the past, and other ďheavy texters.Ē He said the message could not be classified as spam because it was free and because it allowed people to decline future missives."

So, you know, AT&T says it isnít spam. Stop calling it that, angry AT&T customers! And Spamhaus!

Richard Cox, the chief information officer for Spamhaus, a nonprofit antispam organization based in Britain, countered: ďItís absolutely spam. Itís an unsolicited text message. People who received it didnít ask for it. Thatís the universal definition of spam.Ē
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