Well, while I sit here typing this, I'm pretty shocked by the news. Here at ASW
in Vegas, spirits were high for the last 2 days, but have since been shattered by Myspace's announcement to sue at least 20-25 ad networks that many of you know all too well. Some really big ones, others are small to medium sized. Basically, they aren't just going after the big guys in this one, they are obviously doing this to make a point the first time around.
This news is coming from 3 different trusted sources, who gave me the thumbs up to leak the news (even before some of the companies on the list will find out they are on it) but would prefer to remain anonymous. Who can blame them either, eh?
I've got a bunch of confirmed sources on the story as well.
Here's what I know for sure:
Myspace's lawsuit against the networks are to ban them, and their owners from visiting the myspace.com site.
Myspace is seeking punitive damages from $20 million to $75 million PER network.
Myspace is using the strict California state anti-spam laws as basis for the punitive damages cash amount. These laws are meant for email, not bulletins, but for some reason, they are using this as the reason for the crazy damages suit.
I have a list of 6 confirmed networks and 14-17 unconfirmed networks, but will hold off on releasing the names of them until I am absolutely sure they are involved. I was debating on releasing the names, but seeing as this is one hell of a blow that will most likely kill off a network, I think it's safer to just wait a bit and see who is really on the list and who isn't.
The biggest network being hit is CPA Empire
for a staggering $75 million.
I've been saying this for a while now, Myspace was actively monitoring the spam-friendly haven forum known as Screennameforum.com. The list of networks being sued reads like a shopping list, because they all, at some point or another drafted known Myspace spammers and phishers into their programs to promote their offers, even AFTER cease and desist letters were issued to them by Myspace.
It really sucks that this is happening, but at the same time, I don't blame Myspace for their actions, nor do I blame them for doing this and using the networks as an example of their anti-spam rules. This should act as a warning to the entire industry, that spam, no matter email or social networking, is probably not the best route to pursue.