35 NPC deputies have jointly mooted a proposal for enacting a law against junk mails at the current session of the National People's Congress (NPC) Wednesday.
Kong Xiangmei, initiator of the joint proposal by deputies from northwest China's Shaanxi Province, said that the problem of junk mail cannot be revolved by only relying on the alertness of "netizens" and the filtering by websites and it has to be dealt with by law.
Kong, a software expert, cited examples of the United States, Britain, France, Italy and Belgium, which have all taken legal measures to cope with junk mails.
The joint proposals recommended 12 measures, including forbidding junk mails in communications links, forbidding to send junk mails by mobile phones or on the Internet and meting out punishments or even criminal punishments on junk mail senders who refuse to correct.
The joint proposal allows a period of transition for enterprises to adjust their commercial behavior, but those who refuse to mend their ways will be subject to punishment and maximum fines.
The joint proposal has met with considerable support but with reservations in some cases. Deputy Li Pengde, who hates junk mail very much as his computer was once also paralyzed by virus-infested mails, deems it impossible to root out junk mails merely by means of law and the enacting of such law involves many other problems, including privacy.
Deputies from the law circles also expressed similar views. "The intention is good," said Huang He, dean of the college of law in Northwest China. " Unlike other laws, the anti-spam law is very complicated and merits earnest and in-depth study."
(Xinhua News Agency March 11, 2004)