March 30, 2015 –
Online dating service Plenty of Fish has been fined $45,000 CAD by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) for “alleged violation of Canada’s anti-spam legislation.”
The fine was issued following numerous complaints, by Canadians, over Plenty of Fish sending commercial emails without a clear and prominent way to unsubscribe from the emails. Plenty of Fish has since updated its email program to make the unsubscribe more prominent.
The emails in question failed to live up to the Canada anti-spam legislation, which requires that commercial emails make it easy for the user to unsubscribe, if desired.
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“Prior to the coming into force of Canada’s anti-spam law, the CRTC conducted numerous outreach sessions and issued guidance material on interpretation of the new requirements,” says Manon Bombardier, Chief Compliance and Enforcement Officer. “Plentyoffish Media erred by sending commercial electronic messages to its registered users with unsubscribe mechanisms that were not in compliance with the law. This case is an important reminder to businesses that they need to review their unsubscribe mechanisms to ensure they are clearly and prominently set out and can be readily performed. We appreciate that Plentyoffish Media changed its practices once it became aware of the problem.”
Canada’s anti-spam legislation was approved by Parliament in December 2010 and became part of law on July 1, 2014. The complaints investigated against Plenty Of Fish were from emails sent between July 1, 2014 and October 8, 2014.