October 25, 2005

Legislative Activity

October 25, 2005

Representative Mike Nofs
Energy and Technology Committee
Michigan House of Representatives
PO BOX 30014
Lansing, MI 48909

Dear Chairman Nofs:

On behalf of the undersigned Michigan advertising federations, we urge you to oppose the proposed changes to the Child Protection Email Address Registry Act contained in SB 708 and SB 785.

While the registry is intended to protect children from inappropriate content — a goal that we emphatically support — in truth it puts them at greater risk for receiving such material. The proposed bills would serve to make a bad situation worse.

The Federal Trade Commission has found that a Do Not E-mail Registry is a bad idea in large part because of the security risks it creates. The registry in Michigan law is even more vulnerable. If implemented, list providers using the registry will be able to easily identify contact information for children. Even if the database kept by the state were secure, there would be no way to ensure the security of the information stored by hundreds or thousands of third parties.

The registry will do nothing to eliminate or reduce the worst offenders. Huge percentages of spam messages have content that is illegal and is already sent in violation of federal criminal spam law. These senders will not honor the registry any more than they honor existing laws. As noted above, some may actually use the registry to more effectively target children.

We respectfully request that you oppose both SB 708 and SB 785.

Jan Daniel Starr
Michigan Advertising Industry Alliance
(Adcraft Club of Detroit)

Lili Donaldson
Flint Area Advertising Federation

Kristen Myers
Ad Club of West Michigan