IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: While I do have a Doctorate from the Kazakhstan University School of International Business, AND a High School Diploma from Moline Senior High in Moline, IL., I am not a lawyer and probably completely misinterpreting this law so talk to one before you send emails to Canadians.
Canada is only a decade late to the email compliance legislation party but better late than never. On July 1st, almost 11 years to the date, Canada’s anti-spam laws will go into effect (kind of – as I will explain below).
In 2003, the United States put into play the “Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography And Marketing Act” (CAN-SPAM) and completely eliminated spam in the United States. Err…actually only a year later the FTC reported that less than 1% of reported spam was actually CAN-SPAM compliant. Hey good try though!
But Canada’s new law isn’t just about email…Its a HUGE net of shit.
From their website, the new laws will apply to “any electronic message that encourages participation in a commercial activity, regardless of whether there is an expectation of profit.” Types messages include “any means of telecommunications, SMS, social networking, websites, URL’s and other locators, applications, blogs, VoIP, and any other current and future internet and wireless telecommunication.”
WTF? The part about any future internet and wireless communication is a nice touch. Canadians…
For the most part a lot of the rules for sending email are similar to the CAN-SPAM act:
- No misleading from or subject lines
- Must contain various methods of unsubscribing from the messages
- Must store how you got the email/ip/whatever
A couple things I noticed that stuck out from email sending was that there was no requirement to have a suppression list. Also unlike the CAN-SPAM, act there is no exemption for political or religious organizations.