Spam OK in AU - Just become a Political Party

No Spam Logo

Yesterday I received an unsolicited bulk email from Citizens Electoral Council of Australia. The content was mostly their usual diatribe about economic things, but towards the end of the email was a request to visit their site and buy a book "What Australia Must Do to Survive the Depression" - IMO that crosses the line from protected political communication to plain old commercial solicitation.

I placed a formal complaint with ACMA using their online form and received the reply this morning, rejected my complaint on the grounds that they would most likely be covered by the protected political communication parts of the Spam Act 2003. Needless to say I was unimpressed, but there it is in black an white in Australian Law.

The lesson here is simple: Want to spam in Australia with impunity? Just register as a political party!

The spam did offer an unsubscribe link, but as we all know this is often just a harvesting technique... I chose instead to call the included telephone number and ask to speak to Jeremy Beck. He was "unavailable", but instead "Andy" took my details and ensured their "IT guys" would remove my "subscription" to their "press releases". I expressed my concern about just how they got my email address in the first place, but they simply would not discuss how my address was harvested.