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Ok, this is another one off topic, but all of us being e-mail users, I thought you should know. This is an e-mail I got today and figured I'd share it with all of you. We are all pretty active politically so this board is where I thought it would do the most good!
________________________________________________________________________________

US stamps for e-mails

Please read the following carefully if you intend to stay on-line and continue using e-mail:
The last few months have revealed an alarming trend in the Government of the United States attempting to quietly
push through legislation that will affect your use of the Internet. Under proposed legislation, the US Postal Service
will be attempting to bilk e-mail users out of alternate postage fees. Bill 602P will permit the Federal Government to
charge a 5 cent surcharge on every e-mail delivered, by billing Internet Service Providers at source. The consumer
would then be billed in turn by the ISP.

Washington DC lawyer Richard Stepp is working without pay to prevent this legislation from becoming law. The US
Postal Service is claiming that lost revenue due to the proliferation of e-mail is costing nearly $230,000,000 in revenue
per year. You may have noticed their recent ad campaign "There is nothing like a letter." Since the average citizen
received about 10 pieces of e-mail per day in 1998, the cost to the typical individual would be an additional 50 cents
per day, or over $180 dollars per year, above and beyond their regular Internet costs. Note that this would be money
paid directly to the US Postal Service for a service they do not even provide.

The whole point of the Internet is democracy and noninterference. If the Federal Government is permitted to tamper
with our liberties by adding a surcharge to e-mail, who knows where it will end. You are already paying
an exorbitant price for snail mail because of bureaucratic inefficiency. It currently takes up to 6 days for a letter to be
delivered from New York to Buffalo. If the US Postal Service is allowed to tinker with e-mail, it will mark the end of the
"free" Internet in the United States. One Congressman, Tony Schnell (R) has even suggested a "twenty to forty
dollar per month surcharge on all internet service" above and beyond the government's proposed e-mail charges.
Note that most of the major newspapers have ignored the story, the only exception being the Washingtonian which
called the idea of e-mail surcharge "a useful concept whose time has come" (March 6th 1999 Editorial).

Don't sit by and watch your freedom erode away! Send this e-mail to all Americans on your list and tell your friends
and relatives to write to their congressman and say "No!" to Bill 602P.
Kate Turner
Assistant to Richard Stepp, Berger, Stepp and Gorman Attorneys at Law
216 Concorde Street, Vienna, VA

URGENT! Pass this along to all your e-mail buddies

Mike H.
1983 CJ-7 Laredo
1999 Dakota 4x4
/wwwthreads_images/icons/cool.gifo[[[[o
 

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I looked at the Senate and the House websites, http://www.congress.gov and their search says 602 and 602P are invalid bill numbers... I also looked through the names of the Senators and House Reps, and Tony Schnell is non existant...

I'd say it's safe to assume it's a hoax, although I wouldn't doubt they want to, there's no real way for them to be totally sure of how many emails you send and things like that... You can take a dos window, type telnet, telnet to a server on port 25, use their SMTP server to send and email and your ISP won't know about it, so there'd be ways around it even if they would do it... /wwwthreads_images/icons/crazy.gif

So far I haven't seen anything official stating that it is a hoax, but I'm convinced it is... /wwwthreads_images/icons/crazy.gif

Tim
"The_Sandman_454"

/wwwthreads_images/icons/cool.gif '79 Suburban 4x4 454, 6" lift, 35x12.5s & '85 GMC S15 4x4
 
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I agree with The Sandman. I saw this same email last week and asked a friend of mine who works for UUNET Worldcom (one of the worlds largest ISP) and he said this was a complete hoax. . . there are lot of great things on the internet, unfortunately there is also a lot of garbage.

 
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About a year back, this issue was before the House. It was soundly defeated because of special interests (i.e.: AT&T, PacBell). It has something to do with local carriers charging long-distance carriers to use their lines for e-mails. I sent a letter to my rep. Did you?

The threat, however, is real. At this point, the government is unable to regulate the net. It will eventually impose "classes" of access. Each access will be taxed by hours used. Just like gasoline. Or telephones. Ugh.

Its coming. Just not today. They need to erode some other rights, first.

Jon-YJ94
I'd rather be...
[email protected]
 
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this chain was probably some jerk who wanted to see if his email could get back to himself...and it looks like he tried to sneak in some liberal agenda (little thing about the congressman being a republican). anyway, if something like that does happen...people wont be sending as much junk...then again...

Scott,
76304150202030
 
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This is urban legend! It has been around now numerous times... It is NOT real.

Do NOT forward... All it does is clog ISP mail servers... and the yahoo who sent it is smiling...

The thing about the ISP and phone companies has nothing to do with the U.S Postal Service or Email. There is a gripe (put forth by the phone companies) about the interconnect rate the get from ISPs. If the FCC ever comes down on the side of the Baby Bells, it would sound the end of ISPs as we know them... But by then you'll be on a cable modem or DSL...

Jim O'Brien
[email protected]
My jeep page
 
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