It's a good day whenever something bad happens to a spammer. That makes today a beautiful day, as a judge in Los Angeles has ruled in MySpace's favor in a suit they brought against two spammers who ran amok on MySpace pages. The damages awarded were worthy of a deposed Nigerian dictator: $230 million dollars.
U.S. District Judge Audrey B. Collins in Los Angeles ruled in MySpace's favor Monday after Sanford Wallace and Walter Rines failed to show up for a court hearing.
Wallace earned the monikers "Spam King" and "Spamford" as head of a company that sent as many as 30 million junk e-mails a day in the 1990s. He left that company, Cyber Promotions, following lawsuits from leading Internet service providers such as Time Warner Inc.'s AOL, only to re-emerge in a spyware case that led to a $4 million federal judgment against him in 2006.
"MySpace has zero tolerance for those who attempt to act illegally on our site," [MySpace Security Officer] Nigam said in a statement. "We remain committed to punishing those who violate the law and try to harm our members."
Nigam told the AP that Wallace and Rines created their own MySpace accounts or took over existing ones by stealing passwords through "phishing" scams.
They then e-mailed other MySpace members, he said, "asking them to check out a cool video or another cool site. When you (got) there, they were making money trying to sell you something or making money based on hits or trying to sell ring tones."
Of curse judgments like this are hard to collect. But unlike many spammers, at least these two guys are in the United States where MySpace can make their lives holy hell trying to get the money. Perhaps the spammers will get lucky and win a Dutch Internet Lottery to allow them to come up with the money. If they'll e-mail me their bank account information, I'll be glad to hook them up. I won four yesterday.