The Unsolicited Electronic Messages Act, passed last night, bans unwanted messages and requires senders of commercial messages to include accurate sender information and an unsubscribe option, neither of which seems unreasonable.
The right wing Act Party claimed the Act will accomplish nothing to end spam and it will place a burden on business (somehow). Its two MPs were the only two to vote against it.
The not-quite-as right wing National Party voted in favour of it, but said it would achieve very little.
As usual, the Opposition is missing the point.
By outlawing spam, there are now laws to go after anyone who sets up a spam operation in this country. As more counties outlaw spam, more spammers will attempt to operate from countries without such laws.
David Cunliffe, Communications Minister, said:
This law is another important step towards greater internet security. It will clamp down on spam of a domestic origin and provide a platform for seeking an international agreement to fight spam world-wide.
At the moment, 80-95 percent of all email is spam. Clearly something needs to change.
Someday, maybe, there’ll be a way to stamp out this plague once and for all. Until then, we have to do what we can country by country.