Does CAN SPAM apply to individual prospecting emails


Two different people on two different mailing lists asked very similar questions recently. Are people who send individual prospecting emails required to comply with CAN SPAM.
My opinion (not a lawyer, don’t play one on TV, didn’t stay at a Holiday Inn last night) is that CAN SPAM does not mention anything about volume, and any individual unsolicited email that has a “primary purpose” of advertising is required to include a physical postal address and a way to unsubscribe.
My other take on it is for individual prospecting emails failing to comply with CAN SPAM is like speeding. It’s illegal, and you can get in legal trouble by doing it, but everyone does it and few people get caught.

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  • That’s the way I read it, too. I’m not aware of any CAN SPAM case law on non-bulk mail, and given the way that judges read into CAN SPAM what they want to find there, I hope there never is any.

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