Spam Policy

TouchBasePro does not sell or provide email list or databases. TouchBasePro does not allow the sending of bulk unsolicited commercial emails (SPAM). We have measures in place to check and stop such messages. Abuse of this bulk messaging service can result in your account being suspended or closed, and can result in a fine being levied against you depending on the severity of abuse, and damages incurred by TouchBasePro. You are liable for the repercussions of any misconduct, please read our full legal terms and conditions.

The Law isn't enough, it's permission that matters

While the Electronic Communications and Transaction Act, the Consumer Protection Act, the Protection of Personal Information Act and the CAN-SPAM Act all deal with and govern various aspects of bulk marketing, we don't feel that they go far enough to protect recipients. Our definition of spam goes above and beyond the law, both South African and International, and covers what we feel is truly permission-based bulk marketing. Click here for a handy FAQ on what counts as permission.

What is SPAM, according to TouchBasePro?

We define spam as any email sent to a recipient that has not given their direct permission to be emailed. In other words, your recipients must have given you their permission to be contacted by you, and they should never be surprised to receive it. If they haven’t heard of the company that’s emailing them, it’s spam. TouchBasePro has a strict opt-in only policy.

What kind of email addresses can I use on TouchBasePro?

You can send to any recipient that has clearly given you their permission to be emailed about your products/services. They could give you permission by:

  • A newsletter subscribe form on your website.
  • An opt-in check box on a form that states that they will be marketed to. This check box can't be selected by default, the person filling in the form must select it themselves in order to indicate permission.
  • Completing a physical form like a survey or entering a competition, and having a check box on that form that says you will be contacting them via email/SMS. Again, only if they check that box does it indicate permission.
  • Purchasing from you in the last two years.
  • Giving you their details on a business card - but only if they give you their permission to add them to your list. For example, if they added their business card to a box at a tradeshow, there must be a sign that states they will be marketed to if they add their card.

You may be asked to provide evidence of the recipient’s opt-in and show that they have given you permission, please see Subscriber Opt-In Records section below.

What kind of email addresses am I not allowed to use on TouchBasePro?

Any recipient that isn’t expecting your email or has not heard of the company sending to them will see the email as spam. Email addresses that fall into the below categories are not allowed on TouchBasePro:

  • You don't have explicit, provable permission to bulk market to that person in relation to the topic you are emailing them about.
  • You purchased, rented, borrowed or otherwise obtained the email addresses via a third-party.
  • You scraped or ‘copy and pasted’ email addresses from websites.
  • You haven’t contacted them in the last two years.

How will TouchBasePro know that I don't have permission?

We have several methods in place to approve campaigns and check campaign performance, here's a few of them:

  • Our system is integrated with the Spam Reporting Systems for large Email Providers like Outlook.com and Gmail. If someone marks your campaign as spam, we receive a report of it. If you have a high enough complaint rate, you'll receive a warning or, depending on the severity, your account will be locked.
  • We verify all databases that are over a certain size - you can read more information about the Compliance Check process here.
  • We monitor blacklists and abuse accounts 24/7 and will be able to pick up which account is getting complaints or causing delivery issues very quickly.

Why is TouchBasePro so strict on SPAM?

Firstly it is a technical issue; we need to protect the reputation of our IP addresses in order to ensure good deliverability. Bulk unsolicited emails result in spam complaints from recipients. To over simplify the issue for the sake of clarity, spam complaints tend to hang around and contribute to our server’s ranking on various spam filters and mail server rules all over the world. We need those mail servers and spam filters to accept the mass emails that we send on behalf of our clients. So we have to follow the rules and not send junk mail. In the long run this is good for you (if you are our client) as you can be sure of maximum deliverability of your email messages.

Secondly, emailing people without their permission just doesn't make a lot of sense. Your recipient doesn't know who you are or isn't interested in what you're sending, they'll think you are a spammer. Don't waste your time emailing people that doesn't want to hear from you, it's not a good idea and it will damage your reputation.

UNACCEPTABLE SPAM OFFENCES

TouchBasePro reserves the right to suspend accounts and or impose monetary fines in the event unacceptable spamming behaviour. Spamming offences include any of the following:

  • A. A recipient of a campaign complains directly or indirectly to our abuse department that the said email is unsolicited.
  • B. The failed delivery count for any individual campaign is above twenty percent of the total amount of messages sent in that campaign.
  • C. The total unsubscribe count is greater than ten percent of the total amount of messages sent in that campaign.
  • D. You are unable to provide clear and concise proof of the permission given to you by your recipients.

Points A, B, C and D in this section are deemed to be actions which exhibit non-compliance with the TouchBasePro anti-spam policy and referred to as spam offences. TouchBasePro reserves the right to take appropriate action against any Customer Account that exhibits unacceptable spamming behaviour. The figures mentioned above are far more than the average numbers that can reasonably be expected from any legitimate opt-in email marketing campaign.

SUBSCRIBER OPT-IN RECORDS

In compliance with the South African Electronic Communications and Transactions Act, 21 of 2002 each email address or mobile phone number that the Customer uploads to TouchBasePro must have documented record of where the email address or mobile phone number was obtained from. This means the Customer must keep a record of when and how each subscriber opted in. This information must be made available on request within four working days of the request being issued.

ISPA TAKE DOWN PROCEDURE

We nominate ISPA as our agent for the purpose of receiving take-down notifications in terms of section 75 of the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act. Internet Service Providers' Association (ISPA)

Address: PO Box 518, Noordwyk, 1687
Telephone: 010 500 1200
Email: complaints@ispa.org.za

AGREEMENT

This Spam Policy forms part of your Agreement with us and your Services may be suspended or terminated for breach of this Spam Policy in accordance with the Terms and Conditions. You are responsible for violations of this policy by you or anyone using your account, whether authorised by you or not. If you have any questions, please contact us at support@touchbasepro.com.

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