Hotmail, Cisco, ReturnPath, Yahoo sued for blocking email

Two months ago Dela Quist posted on about a class action lawsuit waiting to happen: this is because certain webmail providers like GMail and Hotmail are diverting email from landing in inboxes which they deem either spam or unimportant. An important quote from that post:

“….in the US it is a Federal crime to hide, keep or open others people’s (snail) mail without permission…”

Of course, spamfighting is a good cause, but when email you are expecting is withheld from you, that is not a good thing. Right now ‘good’ email is getting blocked more and more and so far it’s a downhill ride. Currently Hotmail, Cisco, Yahoo and ReturnPath are being sued by Holomaxx, says Ken Magill: the reason would be the blocking and reading (wiretapping) of legitimate email through faulty filters.

“According to HolomaXx, Yahoo and Microsoft began blocking HolomaXx’s messages after the firm acquired its own block of IP addresses and began sending from them in June.
As a result, the complaints claim, Yahoo and Microsoft have disrupted HolomaXx’s contractual relationships and threatened its ability to survive as a business.
Moreover, the complaints allege, Microsoft and Yahoo have “intentionally and recklessly disregarded HolomaXx’s repeated requests to cease their conduct and … have refused to provide any information that would permit HolomaXx to remedy the situation.”

The question is whether this law suit will be just a fad or the first in a line of many cases against (web) mail providers and other companies running spamfilters: the missing regulation and clear checklist rules hasn’t helped in providing the best email experience for both senders and receivers. Lately there have been more and more false positives or simply missing emails popping up here and there: some have blamed GMail’s new Priority Inbox, others are pointing to the learning spamfilters which try to get it all right and maybe are getting a bit too tight.
More info can be found here (Techeye) and here (Spamresource).

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