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"Spitzer is suing under the state's traditional deceptive practice and false advertising statutes that could exact civil penalties of $500 for each offense. "
It is the content not the fact that it is unsolicited commercial email that is causing the problem.
Had the emailer sent ten times as much legal email, NY State would not be concerned.
The term spam has so many meanings it is difficult to make sense out of the word.
Some are using it to mean even a single piece of unsolicited commercial mail and others to mean bulk emailings containing fraud and ***ography.