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Anti-spam rules won't reduce volumes of junk emails

BURNABY (NEWS1130) – In two weeks’ time, anti-spam legislation kicks in, but people who are looking forward to having no junk mail in their inboxes may be sorely disappointed.

The new law will require a Canadian company to have your permission before it sends you a copy of its latest mass email.

SFU marketing professor Leyland Pitt has no doubt Canadian companies will comply, but points out the vast majority of those annoying junk emails come from abroad.

“Your inbox will probably be about two per cent less full,” he figures. “The great majority of the spam we get comes from out of Canada so this legislation has no teeth, as far as that goes.”

He says the anti-spam rules remind him of the Do Not Call legislation from a few years back.

“Did it stop from you getting nuisance calls? Of course it didn’t. It stopped you from getting nuisance calls from organizations in Canada.  I don’t know about you, but most of the nuisance calls I get are from the US.”

Pitt says if junk mail really annoys you, you could change email providers. G-mail, he feels, is the best at filtering out spam.

The new anti-spam measures will especially impact small companies who rely on mass emails to touch base with their customers, says Pitt. If those customers don’t give their express permission to receive the missives, the company’s data bases will shrink.

The legislation comes with fines that start at $1 million if a company doesn’t get consent for sending emails and doesn’t provide a way for receivers to unsubscribe to the emails.

The law goes into effect July 1.