Laws of Unintended Consequences

Posted by Matt Blumberg 

A couple of months ago, I blogged about two well-intentioned but very unfortunate new laws on the books, one in Michigan and one in Utah, designed to protect children from advertising that’s harmful to minors, but in fact full of unintended consequences.

Today, the Detroit Free Press had a great article about how the law in Michigan is so poorly conceived and executed, that not only is it angering legitimate businesses, it’s actually angering the parents who were supposed to be its principle beneficiaries. One parent’s quote in the article pretty much sums it up:

What was the whole point in signing up if it’s not doing any good? Is this just the legislature and the governor trying to look good and tough, but in the end, just kicking up dust?

Agreed, and well said!

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About Matt Blumberg

Matt Blumberg founded Return Path in 1999 because he believed the world needed email to work better. Matt is passionate about enhancing the online relationship between email subscribers and marketers so that both sides of the equation benefit. It is with great pride that he has watched this initial creation grow to a company of more than 400 employees with the market leading brand, innovative products, and the email industry’s most renowned experts. Before Return Path, Matt ran marketing, product management, and the internet group for MovieFone, Inc. (later acquired by AOL). Prior to that he served as an associate with private equity firm General Atlantic Partners and was a consultant with Mercer Management Consulting. He holds a B.A. from Princeton University. You can learn much more about Matt by reading his email marketing and entrepreneurship blog Only Once – one of the first CEO blogs on the Internet. Last year he wrote a book, Startup CEO: A Field Guide to Scaling Up Your Business.

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