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Michael Geist's Blog

Complying With Canada's Anti-Spam Law: Just Ask For Consent

While there is no shortage of fear mongering about Canada's anti-spam legislation, Ottawa-based law firm LaBarge Weinstein recently demonstrated what most organizations need to do in order to comply with the law as Canada transitions to an opt-in consent requirement for commercial messaging. The key requirement for those companies that have long relied on electronic marketing is pretty simple: just ask for consent. The firm recently sent messages to its current mailing list to obtain opt-in consent for continuing to send commercial electronic messages. The firm notes:

In anticipation of Canada's new anti-spam laws, we would like to ensure that we have your consent to receive our publications, announcements, event invitations, and other communications we send from time to time for the purpose of: (i) sharing information with you; and (ii) establishing, developing and/or managing our relationship with you.
Accordingly, if you wish to continue to receive communications from us, please provide the information requested below and click on the "Give Consent Here" button. If we do not receive your consent once the new anti-spam laws have come into effect, we may be unable to continue sending you updates. If you have any questions, or if you wish to withdraw your consent at any time, please feel free to contact us

For thousands of Canadian organizations with mailing lists and active marketing activities, once they ask for and obtain consent, there is no need to focus on exceptions or loopholes in the law. Simply ask your customers for consent - the slow pace of implementation means that all organizations have years to do it - and you've met the major requirement to continue electronic marketing to them in compliance with Canada's new law.
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Colombian Constitutional Court Strikes Down Copyright Reforms

The Colombian Constitutional court has struck down several copyright provisions on constitutionality grounds, including the country's new anti-circumvention (digital lock) rules.
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PIAC Calls For Better Disclosure on Internet Speeds

The Public Interest Advocacy Centre has issued a report that concludes that Canadian ISPs need to provide better disclosure about Internet speed and performance claims.
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