I’ve known for awhile that MySpace has been putting pressure on ad and affiliate networks to stop spamming affiliates from invading “their” space. Jon the owner of the WickedFire forum and an Affiliate Summit panelist reports from the Summit that Myspace has announced it will be suing at least 20-25 ad networks. Jon says these are networks that “many of you know all too well. Some really big ones, others are small to medium sized.” He says “Myspace is seeking punitive damages from $20 million to $75 million PER network.” For now let’s call this an unconfirmed rumor but it sounds like we’ll hear more after Summit. Jon reports:

“I have a list of 6 confirmed networks and 14-17 unconfirmed networks, but will hold off on releasing the names of them until I am absolutely sure they are involved. I was debating on releasing the names, but seeing as this is one hell of a blow that will most likely kill off a network, I think it’s safer to just wait a bit and see who is really on the list and who isn’t.”

“The biggest network being hit is CPA Empire for a staggering $75 million… If this does in fact happen, and the confirmed networks are found guilty, we’ll be seeing a lot of people filing for bankruptcy.

“It’s 3am here in Vegas now, just got off the phone with 2 more network CEO’s that have confirmed that they are indeed being sued, and both are in the $20M-$30M area. Insane.”

Missy Ward one of the founders of Affiliate Summit was with CPAEmpire until a month ago. Looks like she got out just in time. Here’s one of the many official news stories about Myspace filing suit against one of the principals of Optinrealbig.com and CPA Empire.com.

MediaPost Publications – MySpace Sues ‘Spam King’
“MYSPACE HAS FILED A FEDERAL lawsuit against notorious “spam king” Scott Richter, charging that he sent “millions” of unsolicited messages to MySpace members between July and December last year.

The suit charges that Richter, a principal of Optinrealbig.com, CPA Empire.com and MediaBreakaway, oversaw an operation to send bulletins to MySpace members promising items like free Lacoste polo shirts, ringtones and Sidekick 3s.”

I’ve warned lots of affiliates that ask on forums “which networks allow you to market on MySpace” that regardless of the network’s rules MySpace is cracking down – don’t go there.
If some of those networks go down they probably won’t be able to pay all those spamming affiliates that thought they were gaming the system.

Spam doesn’t pay!

UPDATE: More news on the MySpace Lawsuit is coming in from the Summit. Shoemoney writes: “Scott Richter is telling people here at Affiliate Summit that not only is MySpace suing him but also they are suing over 50 other companies AND affiliates.”

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