On Thu, 2018-02-08 at 09:23 -0600, David Jones wrote:
> On 02/07/2018 06:28 PM, Dave Warren wrote:
> > On Wed, Feb 7, 2018, at 15:52, Martin Gregorie wrote:
> > > > Technically, you asked for the email and they have a valid opt-
> > > > out
> > > > process that will stop sending you email.  Yes, the site has
> > > > scummy
> > > > practices but that is not spam by my definition.
> > > > 
> > > 
> > > Yes, under EU/UK that counts as spam because the regulations say
> > > that
> > > the signer-upper must explicitly choose to receive e-mail from
> > > the
> > > site, and by-default sign-in doesn't count as 'informed sign-in'.
> > 
> > Canadian law is the same, this is absolutely spam without any
> > ambiguity.
> > 
> But how can you tell the difference based on content then?  You
> can't. Two different senders could send the exact same email and one
> could be spam from tricking the recipient to opt-in and another could
> be ham the recipient consciously opted into.
You can't, but that should not matter because the recipient can sign in
and cancel the opt-in. 

If this doesn't work then, in the UK, you can report them to the ICO
which should get the company reprimanded and, for a repeat offender,
may get them a fine. Under the new privacy rules, which apply  from
May, non-compliance may get them a fairly heavy smack round the chops,
so I think its likely that legit companys will clean up their act. 

OTOH waking up the ICO may not work if, like the automated cold
callers, the spamming company dodges the fine by declaring bankruptcy
before reappearing under another name and going on spamming. 

There's another related point which may not have sunk in yet: because
of the way the new privacy regime will work, you must be able to tell
any company where you have an account, that you no longer need it and
that they must cancel the account and delete your details as soon as
any outstanding activities, bills, etc. have been completed. I notice
that there are still a lot of websites that do not provide any way of
cancelling an account, so this is something they'll have to provide
sooner rather than later. 


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