How phpList helps you follow Canada’s new CASL spam law


CanadaCanada’s new anti-spam law [1] will enter into force today (J. With heavy penalties for breaking the new law, using software you can trust to help you avoid spamming is vital. Here is how phpList helps you to follow the rules.

When the new law is in force, it will prohibit the “sending of commercial electronic messages without the recipient’s consent (permission), including messages to email addresses.” phpList makes it easy for you to comply with the new law.

phpList is permission based platform which makes doubly sure that consent is given, using the double opt-in method.

The double-opt-in method means new subscribers must first enter their email in the sign-up form, and then they need to click the link in the welcome email. This also stops people signing up other people to newsletters for fun. This double opt-in configuration is not optional, the code of the software would have to be changed to disable it – so you can trust that you are following the rules even if you are a phpList beginner. Additionally, CASL places the onus to prove consent on the list manager [2]: as the phpList system stores the users subscription history for you, including the date and time that they clicked the subscribe link in the welcome email [3], you have this information store in your phpList system.

People can unsubscribe: it is super easy for your subscribers to leave your list if they want to.  By default phpList includes an “unsubscribe” link in the footer of each email.  Additionally, the unsubscribe url is  included in the email header in the html,  so email software can create an unsubscribe button. phpList uses the method described here

People can JumpOff: phpList also supports JumpOff, where people can leave a list in just one step. The button provided by email software described above is a JumpOff, but also, users can force JumpOff by adding &jo=1 to the end of the unsubscribe url.

There is a permanent suppression list which means that once someone has unsubscribed, you can’t accidentally add them again, and they won’t keep getting unwanted emails from other lists on the same system. The only way that you can mail them again from your system is for them to re-subscribe themselves (using the double opt-in).  If you manage several lists you might want to use the [PREFERENCES] or [PREFERENCESURL] placeholders too, so people can leave just one list at a time.

graphic about CASL from The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission

There is lots of helpful information about CASL on The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission website

These phpList features help you too! These phpList features make it easier for you to follow the CASL rules, and newsletter best practice in general, they also;

  • ensure the results from your remaining subscribers are more valuable.
  • keep your delivery rates high, which means that your subscribers are more likely to read and act on your mails.
  • keep customer satisfaction high, make sure your customers only get the correspondence they want from you.
  • keep your costs low: avoid sending emails that are ignored or marked as spam.
  • help save the planet, sending emails to people who aren’t interested uses unnecessary electricity and on a global scale, it adds up! [4]

It’s good to remember that the quality of your subscriber base is far more valuable than the quantity. phpList has all the features required to help you gain and maintain a high quality subscriber base.