Thursday, April 26, 2007


Maybe this isn't as unique as I think, but yesterday I received a strange fax at work. I was slipping into semi-coma, reading an especially ponderous case, and suddenly my printer revved into action with that mini-jet engine roar that stand-alone printers make when they come on. Jolted me pretty good. And sure enough, a one page document came out, featuring a clumsily-designed cartoon drawing of a suit, lots of numbers & three-word phrases & exclamation points, and biggest & boldest of all, the words "Spotless Cleaners."

I was spammed. By a fax! A Spam Fax? I have my own work-fax number, so this one came directly to my printer. WTF??? Obviously I've received e-mail spam & junk mail through the years. And trust me, in NYC at least, you get plenty of unwanted telephone solicitation at the office: recruiters, financial advisors, custom tailors, insurance. It's endless, in frequency & variety. As soon as your name goes up on the firm website it starts. I'm not up yet (probably in a week or so, when do their monthly update or whatever it is), but I expect it to start soon.

But I've never gotten a junk fax. Who junk faxes? The document even had a remove-from-the-call list number, which you damn well better believe I dialed immediately.

Anyone else ever have this happen?

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Blogger DWilkers said...

There was a case down here about ten years ago. (going from hazy memory here)

The KKK had applied for and received a permit to have a march in some town. They had promoted the event by sending spam faxes to all the businesses in the area. Some of the businesses raised hell about it and sued the organizer. The end ruling was you cannot use someone else's fax like that without their permission.

I don't remember the legal distinction they used but it had to do with the spam faxes using a resource the business was paying for (the paper and ink and whatever).

Anyway, spamming faxes isn't legal here IIRC. I rather doubt it is where you are either.

7:03 AM  
Anonymous Toast said...

I haven't personally experienced this phenomenon, but I've heard about it. I don't think it's all that uncommon.

8:55 AM  
Blogger maurinsky said...

Our office has spam faxes on the machine every morning. Usually for vacations or "money-making opportunities".

10:32 AM  
Blogger Ed in Westchester said...

I get them all the time in my office.
"Last Chance Vacation Sale"
"Buy stock in the company"
"Here's the diet I was telling you about a few minutes ago"

To name but a few.

Plus, there are all these pesky faxes from clients who want me to do shit for them. Dammit. I'm waiting for my fax from the Nigerian Ministry about my billions.

10:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We got those all the time, especially from restaurants. To the especially odious ones my boss would make his reply. On the back of seven or eight pieces of scrap paper he would write one big word on each sheet:


He would laugh, thinking about wasting their paper. This is a man who had too much time on his hands and thought paper was expensive.

12:02 PM  
Blogger Comandante AgĂ­ said...

My mom has a fax machine (which she rarely uses) and receives spam faxes all the time. They're usually for loan offers.

10:41 PM  
Blogger Mike said...

Ok, so it seems I've gotten myself into a tizzy over nothing. Not the first time.

Still a pain in the ass though.

5:57 AM  

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