Thursday, June 4, 2009

Kimkins SPAM

I am banned from Kimkins. Since September 2007. But I still receive newsletters, recipes and emails from Kimkins.con. Several times per month.

It doesn't matter how many times I unsubscribe. The emails keep on arriving.

I wonder if Heidi Diaz knows that she is in violation of the CAN-SPAM act.

From the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) website:

What the Law Requires

Here's a rundown of the law's main provisions:

  • It bans false or misleading header information. Your email's "From," "To," and routing information – including the originating domain name and email address – must be accurate and identify the person who initiated the email.

  • It prohibits deceptive subject lines. The subject line cannot mislead the recipient about the contents or subject matter of the message.

  • It requires that your email give recipients an opt-out method. You must provide a return email address or another Internet-based response mechanism that allows a recipient to ask you not to send future email messages to that email address, and you must honor the requests. You may create a "menu" of choices to allow a recipient to opt out of certain types of messages, but you must include the option to end any commercial messages from the sender.

    Any opt-out mechanism you offer must be able to process opt-out requests for at least 30 days after you send your commercial email. When you receive an opt-out request, the law gives you 10 business days to stop sending email to the requestor's email address. You cannot help another entity send email to that address, or have another entity send email on your behalf to that address. Finally, it's illegal for you to sell or transfer the email addresses of people who choose not to receive your email, even in the form of a mailing list, unless you transfer the addresses so another entity can comply with the law.

  • It requires that commercial email be identified as an advertisement and include the sender's valid physical postal address. Your message must contain clear and conspicuous notice that the message is an advertisement or solicitation and that the recipient can opt out of receiving more commercial email from you. It also must include your valid physical postal address.
The emails from Kimkins.con fulfill these requirements, with the exception of the "opt-out."

I don't doubt that Heidi will blame "technical glitches" or duplicate databases and email services but the Law doesn't allow for such an excuse. It clearly says that you have to honor the opt-out and stop sending emails within 10 days.

The FTC also spells out the penalties:


Each violation of the above provisions is subject to fines of up to $11,000.

As Heidi does not seem to be aware that she is in violation of this law (or does not care) I made sure that the FTC knows about her spamming. It is very easy to submit a complaint on the FTC website.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Kimkins Cyber Attorney

Since when does legal correspondence take place via email? Heidi Diaz' attorney, Peabody, apparently thinks that this is a proper form of communication.

Is this something new approved in legal circles that I am just not aware of? All my dealings with attorneys have always involved written letters by mail or fax.

To me, there seems to be a reason for this. There is no easy way to tell WHO sent an email. There is no easy way to tell if an email was received (served). How can you know it doesn't end up in a spam filter that the recipient is never checking?

Nevertheless, Peabody keeps on sending "official" Cease and Desist emails to anti-kimkins blogger. Affiliatescams has posted the email she received. Note that her email wasn't even sent directly to her. Unbelievable. But then nothing should really surprise us when it comes to this Kimkins saga, should it?

Also, read the comments to Affiliatescams' post. One blogger (Becky) received a Cease and Desist as a blog comment. Blog comment! How can that be considered Service of Process?

So what is the purpose of these Cease and Desist emails and comments? Peabody says to Affiliatescams: "demand is hereby made that you immediately cease and desist from making any further derogatory or untoward comments on your blog(s) regarding my client and her business interests".

What about the First Amendment? Consumer rights?

I am a disgruntled (banned) customer of Kimkins and have the right to express my dissatisfaction with their service (or lack thereof). My blog certainly has a lot of untoward comments regarding Heidi Diaz but that is less of my doing that hers. If Heidi had not flooded the internet with her lies and fraudulent pictures, I would not had anything to write about.

While it might be beneficial for Peabody (billing hours!) to write these emails, we expect that he will be busy with real legal actions soon. There is an unprecedented hearing set for a Motion for Summary Judgement set for August 24. Read about it on Kimkins Class Action Lawsuit blog, and mark your calendars.