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Direct Response Marketing

Field Reports

1 Nov, 2007 By: Thomas Haire, Courtney Beth Pugatch Response


The association also welcomed its new board members during the event: Brett Goffin of Google, Lawrence Hayes of QVC, Brad Klaus of Syndero, Brent Thompson of InterActiveCorp (IAC), Dirk W. van de Bunt of Guthy-Renker Corp., and Jim Warner of HSN.

Seattle Subway Stores Launch Mobile Phone Promotions
Seattle Subway Stores Launch Mobile Phone Promotions

 

Internet Hijacker Settles With FTC

 

By Courtney Beth Pugatch (cpugatch@questex.com)

WASHINGTON — An Internet spammer who used more than 5,500 copycat Web addresses to divert surfers from their intended Internet destinations to one of his sites has agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission (FTC) charges that he was in contempt of a court order requiring him to halt the practices. Under the new FTC order, the defendant, John Zuccarini, must give up $164,000 in ill-gotten gains, conform to enhanced compliance and monitoring requirements, and transmit a copy of the new order to his probation officer.


 

The FTC charged Zuccarini in 2001 for registering Internet domain names that were the misspellings of legitimate names or inverted phrases. Zuccarini, for example registered 15 variations of the popular Cartoon Network Web site (www.cartoonnetwork.com) and 41 variations on the name of pop star Britney Spears. Internet browsers looking for these sites — but who misspelled the addresses — would be taken to one of Zuccarini's sites and were allegedly bombarded with a rapid series of windows displaying pornography. In some cases, the Web consumer thought these ads were from a legitimate site, finding it difficult or impossible for consumers to close the windows or escape.

In August 2003, Zuccarini was prosecuted for the misleading use of domain names and the possession of child pornography. He was sentenced to 30 months in prison and 36 months of supervised release.

Most recently, Zuccarini has admitted he was in contempt of the original FTC order. The new order imposes a judgment of $164,000 — his earnings from engaging in the prohibited deceptive practices.

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