Why did yesmail.com and the Mail Abuse Prevention System back down and put their litigation on hold this week? Both companies had said they welcomed the opportunity to establish a legal precedent regarding MAPS' Realtime Blackhole List. Now, they said in a joint statement, their business interests weren't that far apart in the first place and are working on a solution for the entire e-mail marketing industry.
Most industry watchers had expected a better answer than that while a few expressed relief, saying the issue was bounding to a conclusion before people were ready — imagine how unstoppable MAPS would have become if the court had ruled in its favor. However, let's put the issue into perspective. Spam is not the scourge of the universe so many people claim it to be. It's annoying, but you don't jeopardize legitimate business models while one group — with an overly strict definition of spam — lords over the rest. If this keeps up, though, government may not give the industry time to resolve the issue.