A disparate group of 50 non-profit US organisations have defeated AOL in its plan to start charging them for sending out bulk e-mail.
AOL and Yahoo have already announced plans to start charging companies for sending out bulk e-mail that can avoid their e-mail spam filters.
The move is supposed to help the web portals in their fight against spam, with those paying being will be registered as trusted senders.
Organisations that do not pay the fee, anything between a quarter of a cent and one cent per message sent, risk seeing their messages diverted to the junk mail boxes of recipients.
Non-profit organisations said the plan could cripple their fundraising efforts.
The US group which protested against the AOL sending levy includes Oxfam America, Gun Owners of America, Friends of the Earth, and the AFL-CIO trade union confederation.
AOL has now said that non-profit organisations will be exempt from the charges.
AOL was more advanced than Yahoo in its e-mail levy plans. Yahoo has yet to say how it will treat non-profit organisations once its system gets off the ground.