Inbox Insider: For CAN-SPAM compliance, sooner is better

Welcome to Inbox Insider, a new column in DMNews focusing on the e-mail space. This week's edition will look at the new CAN-SPAM rules that have taken effect.


On July 7th, the Federal Trade Commission's updates to CAN-SPAM went into effect, requiring the opt-out process to be a one-step process. Perhaps the Fourth of July holiday weekend slowed things down, but right now, it seems that not all e-mail marketers have received the memo.


I recently signed up for an online account with Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. During the sign-up process, I opted out of receiving about 20 different e-mails — I get enough e-mail — and was surprised to find a message the following day asking me to take a survey.


The message came from a Martha Stewart e-mail address and asked me to link to an online services firm called Zoomerang. There was also an opt-out link at the bottom of the e-mail that connected to the Zoomerang site. When I clicked to the opt-out page, it was a big mess and, after clicking through a few more times, I still never confirmed that I opted out of the e-mail.


Wanting to clear the matter up, I replied to the marketing e-mail asking to opt out and, surprisingly, received a very nice message from a Martha Stewart employee, who opted me out personally.


In my message, I mentioned the new CAN-SPAM as a reminder that the opt-out processes needed to be cleared up. The employee responded,  “The single-step opt-out is not yet a CAN-SPAM requirement; however, we will implement this option before it is required.”


So consider this a memo to update your opt out.

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