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A few years back in response to the more offensive e-mail spam purveyors, the federal govt. came up with the CAN-Spam regs. At the time I was working for a company that did a lot of marketing to their customers via e-mail and they were forced to curtail their activities until they could get a handle on how to work around the regs.

Considering the spam-messages that are so prevalent in forums like this and in other social media outlets where online business communities are being developed, would a similar set of regs be helpful or hurtful to social media and the building of online communities?

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Last Post by MktgRob
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I do believe that social media communities may benefit from some sort of regulations, as long as it does not prevent engagement and communication. But in this case, the regulation will affect more the user than the owner of the community which is a different dynamic than CAN-SPAM's regulations affecting the creator of the email.

Also, something to keep in mind, mass email services CAN-SPAM violation alert helps keep the email in check but what services will social media use to have the same type of alert?

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I do believe that social media communities may benefit from some sort of regulations, as long as it does not prevent engagement and communication. But in this case, the regulation will affect more the user than the owner of the community which is a different dynamic than CAN-SPAM's regulations affecting the creator of the email.

Also, something to keep in mind, mass email services CAN-SPAM violation alert helps keep the email in check but what services will social media use to have the same type of alert?

You are making the assumption that all mass-spammers use known mass e-mail services. As they know that these services are bound by the regs to prevent such activities, I would not be surprised to find some of these people hiring a consultant to build their own service for them.

As for potential regs affecting only the user and not the forum/community owner, keep in mind that federal regs are usually heavy on overkill so do not assume that they would only punish the user and not the community owner. Govt did give us the death tax!

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