Every marketeer is seeking the right balance between an effective campaign and staying within the boundaries of the law. So, what is spam? What is an unsolicited bulk email? What regulations determine whether your email against the law?
There is a lot of confusion surrounding these questions. Many people seem to carry the misconception that any cold or unsolicited email is spam, and that spam is illegal. To start with, let’s clarify the distinction between “spam” and illegal email. “Spam” is not a legal term, and definitions vary. A spam message may not be illegal, and an illegal message may not be spam, by certain definitions.
“Unsolicited” means that the recipient has not granted verifiable permission for the message to be sent. Bulk means that the message is sent as part of a larger collection of messages, all having substantively identical content. According to some extreme sources emails are often considered “Spam”, if they are both unsolicited and sent as bulk. This would effectively label 99% of all email traffic as Spam, stopping all promotions.
To create a common ground, the US has introduced a law – The CAN-SPAM Act - passed by the United States Congress in 2003. The CAN-SPAM Act is a US law that governs the sending of commercial emails.
The CAN-SPAM Act is a US law that governs the sending of commercial emails. Interestingly, the CAN-SPAM Act doesn’t require permission to send an email as other country’s commercial messaging laws have established. What it does require is that the recipient has the right to have you stop emailing them. This is known as an opt-out method, typically provided through an unsubscribe link included in the footer of the email.
If you conduct email marketing campaigns, you need to comply with the CAN-SPAM Act. Here are some steps you can take to comply:
It's important to note that the CAN-SPAM Act is a complex law, and there may be additional steps you need to take to comply fully with its requirements. Therefore, it is recommended that you seek legal advice to ensure that your email marketing campaigns are fully compliant with the CAN-SPAM Act.
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