The Government of Canada has been busy lately working on a new Anti-Spam Law that aims to discourage the most damaging forms of Spam in Canada. First written in December 2010, the law was revised in January 2013 and is awaiting a Governor in Council order to take effect. This new law will affect anybody who sends commercial electronic messages that “encourage participation in a commercial activity, regardless of whether there is an expectation of profit”.
Simply speaking, when sending Commercial Electronic Messages, or CEMs, senders will now have to obtain consent from the recipient first, before sending any communication. This consent can be obtained either verbally or in writing, but it must contain the name of the organization, a mailing address and contact information (phone number or email address), a statement explaining on whose behalf consent is being sought, the identity and contact information of a third-party used to obtain consent. Organizations will also need to include information that identifies them clearly when sending any electronic message. The sender will also have to provide a clear and easy way to unsubscribe from the list of recipients, and must allow recipients to opt-out of all communication sent by the organization and by third-party partners.