Attention Business Owners!
A lot of people have been asking me about Canada’s new Anti-spam Laws (CASL) going into effect July 1st, 2014. At first I didn’t know what to tell them, since I hadn’t done any research myself, and then I didn’t know what to tell them because everyone (and their grandmother) seemed to have a different idea about what it all meant. It became even more confusing when a bunch of lawyers started to chime in with their conflicting opinions.
So the best piece of advice I can give you is, read what the Government of Canada website actually says. It’s a little long and a little involved, but at least you will be getting the facts instead of opinions. Further to that, I am not a lawyer so if you have any questions relating specifically to your business that is not covered on the website you can call the Government and ask! They are happy to go through any and all of your questions. You can also opt in for updates on CASL here.
In the interim, here is a video that organizes the information in a fairly simple, easy-to-understand sort of way.
I want to stress that even though these laws come into effect on July 1st, 2014, you have 36 months to get everything in order. This means it is not necessary to freak out and heed the fear mongers. Yes, there can be a $10 Million fine, but you can also sue a ham sandwich for $200; It doesn’t mean you’re going to win, or that it is going to happen.
Here are the main points.
– You need to have it, expressed or implied.
– The onus is on the business owner to prove it.
– Once you have received consent you do not need to ask for it again.
2. Contact Information
– The Business owner must identify themselves and provide contact information with all of their communications.
– All Commercial Electronic Messages (CEM) must include an unsubscribe option.
Commercial Electronic Messages – Any message/invitation to purchase, sell or lease a product/service including advertisements of products and people.
Electronic Addresses – Include email, text messaging and instant messaging
Sandra Rogoza also wrote a blog outlining all of the main points of CASL on the IABC/Calgary website. Her analysis is quite detailed, thorough and without opinion. It goes through what it means for groups, organizations, directors, employees and third parties along with bigger definitions and explanations of each major point.
What are your thoughts on CASL? Do you think it will have a negative impact on how you do business? Let me know in the comments below. Want to know more about this and other communication topics? Contact me or Subscribe!