Friday, January 19, 2007


Along the lines of calling my internet law class "Cyberspace Law," the courts demonstrate the origins of this archaic and downright silly terminology.

Washington v. Heckel, a case from Oregon in 2001 (2001!) refers to "unsolicited commercial e-mail." Instead of writing "spam," they refer consistently throughout the case to "UCE." Craziness.

In a related vein, I'm on a mission to drop the hyphen from "e-mail." It's unnecessary and wasteful. "Email" is universally recognized, and smoother on the typing fingers.

1 comment:

greg said...

I haven't hyphenated "email" in years. Those that do are heathens.

As for UCE, it's a well established term, with a narrower meaning. "Spam" refers to all the crap that ends up in your inbox, whether it's a phishing attack, a stock-pumping scheme, a chain letter, etc. "UCE" more narrowly covers email that is unsolicited, advertising a commercial product or service.

Which is all a long-winded way to say, I'll support an attack on the "cyber" prefix, but I don't really have any problems with the use of "UCE." Not that you need my approval.