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Spam Law Next Week

Mark Edwards
04-04-2004

You have only seven days to go before the Spam Bill becomes law in this country. I covered this impending legislation, extensively in September last year. Here is a brief summary of the points to look out for:



This Act sets up a scheme for regulating commercial e-mail and other types of commercial electronic messages.

Unsolicited commercial electronic messages must not be sent.

Commercial electronic messages must include information about the individual or organisation who authorised the sending of the message.

Commercial electronic messages must contain a functional unsubscribe facility.

Address-harvesting software must not be supplied, acquired or used.

An electronic address list produced using address-harvesting software must not be supplied, acquired or used.

The main remedies for breaches of this Act are civil penalties and injunctions.



Whilst the Bill is extensive, one point is worth visiting in detail. The concept of consent, or when is it OK to send an electronic message to someone?



For the purposes of this Act, consent means:

(a) express consent; or

(b) consent that can reasonably be inferred from:

(i) the conduct; and

(ii) the business and other relationships of the individual or organisation concerned.



"For the purposes of this Act, the consent of the relevant electronic account-holder may not be inferred from the mere fact that the relevant electronic address has been published."



In other words, just because you see an email address for someone this does not necessarily mean you can send them a commercial email.



If you have any questions about possible effects of this legislation on your client communications strategy or are wondering if your current provider of list management services is up to the rigorous standard we set here at AllThingsConsidered.biz then please get in touch with me.

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