Junk fax lawsuits

2003-05-25 02:51

This StarTribune story is the first coverage I’ve seen on my own personal contribution to trying to get rid of junk faxes.

I have received something over 700 junk faxes in the last couple of years. My first fax machine broke – having processed perhaps twenty faxes for me, and perhaps 350 for fax blasters.

There oughta be a law.

There is a law. It’s called the TCPA, and one of the things it prohibits is unsolicited fax advertisements. The law says you need prior express permission. “Express” is a great word. It means “not implicit”. There’s no implicit permission. You found my number? That’s not permission. My number is posted somewhere? That’s not permission. We do business? That’s not permission.

The law depends on a private right of action for most enforcement. That means the fax blasting scum can get away with it as long as they want, until either they finally attract the notice of the FTC, or someone sues them.

Today, that someone is me. Our dishonest friends are trying to spin this as some kind of sneaky attempt to “win the lottery at someone else’s expense”. Hah! They were sued for sending junk faxes last March; they knew, as of then, that there was a federal law on the issue. I got faxes from them later than March. In September, the company they were using got shut down (in principle, anyway) by a preliminary injunction. I got faxes from the same cell phone people later than that, too – meaning that either their fax blasting friends violated that injunction, or they went out and found someone else, after their first supplier had been shut down for violating a law.

Either way, as one of the few people who actually keeps old junk faxes around, I’m in a position to make it clear that this is not something they should keep doing, and maybe get a bit more case law on the books.

Thanks to Julie Forster for her excellent reporting. As of this writing, there’s one error in the article, which may be my fault for explaining things poorly. I never got any faxes over about five pages – certainly not 116. The 116 pages is about 60 different faxes from one company, and the 50 pages is 50 separate faxes from someone else – and yes, I expect to go after them, too.

So, for those of you whose fax machines are perpetually out of paper, if you’re in the US, there’s something you can do about it. Go check out junkfaxes.org today and start your research.

Peter Seebach



  1. Thank you for this info. my company has been receiving tons of faxes and some of these companies are located in cancun mexico. but I don't know how we can deal with them. anyway. thanks for the info. if you could assist me further with these out of u.s. companies I would greatly appreciate it.

    — Nick Cruz · 2007-03-05 11:47 · #