Questions

Having gone through the CAN SPAM act for email marketing, need some further clarification. Their emails are in a public business directory where they have their full details along with emails.

It covers all commercial messages, which the law defines as “any electronic mail message the primary purpose of which is the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service,” including email that promotes content on commercial websites. That means all email – for example, a message to former customers announcing a new product line – must comply with the law. What matters is the “primary purpose” of the message. If the message contains only commercial content, its primary purpose is commercial, and it must comply with the requirements of CAN-SPAM. It’s common for email sent by businesses to mix commercial content and transactional or relationship content. When an email contains both kinds of content, the primary purpose of the message is the deciding factor.
So, when a message contains both kinds of content – commercial and transactional or relationship – if the subject line would lead the recipient to think it is a commercial message, it’s a commercial message for CAN-SPAM purposes. Similarly, if the bulk of the transactional or relationship part of the message does not appear at the beginning, it is a commercial message under the CAN-SPAM Act.
Although the subject line is “Your Account Statement” – generally a sign of a transactional or relationship message – the information at the beginning of the message is commercial in nature and the brief transactional or relationship portion of the message is at the end. If an email advertises or promotes the goods, services, or websites of more than one marketer, there is a straightforward method for determining who is responsible for the duties the CAN-SPAM Act imposes on “senders” of commercial email. If the designated sender does not comply with the responsibilities the law gives to initiators, all marketers in the message may be held liable as senders. So, deciding if the CAN-SPAM Act applies to a commercial “forward-to-a-friend” message often depends on whether the seller has offered to pay the forwarder or give the forwarder some other benefit. For example, if the seller offers money, coupons, discounts, awards, additional entries in a sweepstakes, or the like in exchange for forwarding a message, the seller may be responsible for compliance. For example, both the company whose product is promoted in the message and the company that originated the message may be legally responsible. In addition, the rule requires the electronic equivalent of a “brown paper wrapper” in the body of the message. However, this requirement does not apply if the person receiving the message has already given affirmative consent to receive the sender’s sexually oriented messages.
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Answered 7 months ago

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