On January 5, 2013, Industry Canada released its second attempt at regulations under the Anti-spam Act. The Act is expected to come into force some time in 2013. One of the keys to its practical implementation are the regulations. These Industry Canada regulations are subject to a 30 day commentary period, but because they are a second draft, I expect they are very close to final. Anyone wanting to make comments can do so following the process described in the release.
The Industry Canada regulations are important as they help define what is and is not spam.
The Act defines spam so broadly that it will affect how most of us conduct business and goes far beyond what the average person would consider to be spam. Most businesses and charities now routinely send emails that will be considered spam under the Act.
The regulations are helpful, but the fact that it has to go on at length about the definition of such things is an indication of just how complex and over reaching the legislation is.
- Define “family relationship” and “personal relationship”
- Adds as an exemption from the definition of spam messages within an organization or with contracted parties
- Adds as an exemption from the definition of spam messages in reply to a request or complaint
- Adds as an exemption from the definition of spam messages sent to satisfy legal obligations or enforce rights
- Adds a complex limited exemption for business referrals
- Exempt the need for consent for certain software installed by telecommunications service providers
- Defines what membership in a club, association or voluntary organization means for the purposes of an “existing non-business relationship”
I’m working on a series of articles about the anti-spam act to be published later this month, so stay tuned for more detail.