The California Supreme Court has upheld the constitutionality of its state anti-spam law after a long-running legal dispute, saying that the law does not violate U.S. interstate commerce laws. In 1999, California resident Mark Ferguson sued interactive services companies FriendFinder and Conru Interactive, alleging that they had sent him and others unsolicited e-mail advertisements that were deceptive, misleading and in violation of state law.
California's anti-spam law requires unsolicited messages to be labeled as advertisements and to include an address or toll-free phone number recipients can use to tell the sender to stop sending documents. In June 2000, a San Francisco Superior Court judge ruled that the law violated the dormant Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution by placing inconsistent restrictions on interstate use of the Internet. In January, a California appeals court upheld the state law, reversing the earlier decision.