As we have been discussing, America Online and Yahoo are planning to charge high-volume senders of e-mail fees to guarantee preferred delivery of their messages – a move that has spawned protest from a group of non-profit and public interest groups. A campaign, organized by and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, has set up a Web site ( which will have an online petition users can sign asking AOL to change its policy.

The fee will be a disadvantage to "charities, small businesses and even families with mailing lists that will have no guarantee their e-mail will be delivered," said Adam Green, a spokesman for Civic Action, the group's nonpolitical arm. "The magic of the Internet is that it is free and open to everybody so small ideas can become big ideas."

Nicholas Graham, a spokesman for AOL, said the company would continue to deliver mail from political and charitable groups as it has in the past, using technology and people to sort legitimate mail from unwanted junk mail.