Dole Camp Sued for $80

A computer consultant has sued the Senate campaign of Elizabeth Dole for eight unsolicited e-mails he received.

His price to settle? $80.

Ken Pugh, of Durham, filed the lawsuit in Salisbury — where Dole's campaign committee is located — based on a relatively new North Carolina law that allows people to collect $10 for each unsolicited commercial item they receive by e-mail, or spam. A court date has been set for Nov. 18.

"It wouldn't have mattered if the spam mail came from the Republican, Democrat, Libertarian or Green Party,'' he said. "This is basically an anti-spam initiative on my part.

"To me, spam is an aggravation and a waste of my time. I am getting more spam mail than regular mail by a far percentage. I am testing the viability of the law to see if it really works and if I can get my money back.''

It is unclear whether Pugh's lawsuit is the first test of North Carolina's anti-spam statute. Pugh said such lawsuits are difficult to file because many senders of unsolicited e-mail are out of state and cannot be found.

In an Aug. 26 letter to Pugh, the Dole campaign said that its e-mails are not commercial and thus do not fall under the anti-spam law. But the letter said Dole's campaign respected Pugh's desire to receive no more unsolicited e-mails, he said.