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Communications Corner

Can We Continue Our Electronic Relationship?

June 27th, 2014 at 2:46 pm

June 27, 2014

You’ve probably been getting a lot of emails in your inbox asking for your permission to continue receiving emails, promotions, newsletters etc., from various senders. Trust me, it’s less about courtesy and more about complying with a new law.

Communications come from all different sources. Most are benign. Your emails to business associates, clients, supporters, suppliers and a myriad of others are purely part of the daily workplace processes. You ask for things, promote things, suggest things throughout the year. It’s all good. And most of your contacts reciprocate.

But the communications landscape is changing thanks to Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation or CASL.

Introduced in 2010, it is designed to make things safer online, to provide that feel-good vibe for Canadians participating in online or electronic commerce in this country. In otherwords, it’s an attempt at cleaning up the wild west environment that’s prevelant in the e-commerce world.

What it will do is; prohibit the sending of commercial electronic messages (CEMs) to those who didn’t ask for it or permit it. So those with email, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin or other such accounts, cellphones, tablets and other electronic devices will no longer be inundated with commercial crap, unless they’ve okeyed it. It’s sort of like having a guard dog by your mailbox. Junk mail isn’t going to pile up as long as you’ve got Goliath on the job. You bring Goliath indoors and you’re saying, hey, it’s ok. I want junk mail.

There are additional restrictions being placed on the distribution of CEMs. You won’t be able to alter transmission data in CEMs so that they go to others without their consent. The installation of malicious computer software, ie. malware, spyware, along with a wanted computer program will be verbotten without prior consent from the recipient. Misleading people or making misleading representations online, including on websites, while promoting products or services will be illegal. Collecting electronic addresses by way of computer programs and using these addresses without the address holder’s knowledge or permission won’t be allowed.

Of course there is some fine print in the CASL but in a nutshell unless you’re a not-for-profit, the cavalier approach to communicating electronically in Canada is really tightening up.

The legislation will roll out July 1st, 2014. We call that Canada Day eh! Organizations like ACNBA will have three years to get their electronic communications house in order.

It’s about time really. Think about how much time is wasted and the frustration created dealing with all the junk on websites, in programs, in emails and so on that you didn’t ask for.

Now you’ll get the chance to do just that. So get ready for a steady inflow of electronic permission slips.

We’ll see how this all goes. For those senders or marketers who don’t comply there’s no slap on the wrist. Individuals can be fined up to $1,000,000 and businesses up to $10,000,000! So everyone better get on board and understand what they’re doing before they press that SEND button starting July 1st.

Kirk out.

Goin’ Mobile

April 30th, 2014 at 11:23 am

April 30, 2014

Just got a new book sent to me by a good friend. “The Mobile Wave” by technologist and American entrepeneur Michael Saylor. It came out in 2012. It’s Saylor’s observation on the mobile world we live in and how it will and is changing that world.

It comes down to two simple principles; the ever expanding and accellerating pace of technological advancement and the move to mobile communication, utilizing cloud technology and increasingly sophisticated mobile hardware, including smartphones and tablets.

This is real Star Trek stuff. Just look at the apps you can get for your phones today. They can replicate a myriad of processes, provide access to a world of information and connect with anyone with similar access. Saylor predicts by 2015 – not very far away folks – that 65% of the world’s population will be mobile-connected. What this means is the playing field is becoming more even. The old ways of doing business are being pushed aside. Corporations have to adapt or be left behind. Saylor uses Kodak’s demise as a prime example.

It’s the dawning of the Information and Communications Revolution. Saylor gives a nod to Steve Jobs and Apple for pioneering the technological framework of the mobile wave with their iPhone, App Store and built-in GPS. Mobile communication through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, blogs, etc., has altered the communications paradigm. (Another crack at the “paperless society”?)

Just look at a crowd of people in nearly any environment. Most are face down into their smartphones. Many are documenting what’s around them. At any one time, anyone with a mobile device can become a reporter, a journalist, a photographer, a documentary maker, a film maker, an archivist, a historian. The mobile wave is crashing into the shores of the status quo.

Entertainment including movies, TV shows, sports events, etc., are utilizing the mobile wave and reaping huge profits. Education, medicine, health care, politics, banking, social causes have all become entrenched in the mobile movement.

In short, Saylor says either get on the wave or be swept under by it. So organizations of all stripes, including non-profits like ACNBA need to up their strategic communications game plans to remain relevant.

Maybe the Who’s Pete Townsend saw the future in 1971 when he penned, “Goin’ Mobile”.

The Mobile Wave. A fascinating read.

Kirk out.

Growing Our Social Media

March 7th, 2014 at 2:11 pm

March 7, 2014

Facebook, Twitter, Youtube; they’re all part of the need to feed. Millions of people are putting up blogs, vlogs, tweets, posts all in the name of communication. And it’s communication NOW. The pacing for the newstime airing of stories on TV and radio, the printing of copy on newsprint is glacial by comparison. That which is happening around us or in other parts of the world now becomes instant online fodder. And now it’s a constant race to see who gets it posted first.

With today’s smartphones, everyone is a potential journalist, reporter, photographer or videographer. While the skillsets vary the desire to document and disclose is not. It’s universal.

Example;  you’re on the highway and (heaven forbid) a massive pileup occurs in front of you. In the past it could sometimes take hours for a news team to get to the site. Today, any one of the witnesses, including you, pulls out a smartphone, records video, shoots a few images and in seconds it’s on Facebook, or tweeted on Twitter or posted on Instagram. It could go viral within minutes. What started out as an isolated incident on a northern highway is now spreading like wildfire around the world!

Here at ACNBA we’re steadily growing our social media. We’re posting more and more information. Hopefully it’s information you’ll find interesting and gives you a better understanding of who we are and what we do.

And if you ‘like’ or ‘share’ or ‘retweet’ what we have to say, we thank you and hope you’ll keep in touch!

Kirk out.

Hello New Year!

January 8th, 2014 at 9:57 am

Well here we go! We’ve got a fresh new year to get busy with. And speaking from a communications perspective things are hopping already.

We’ve got Lads N’ Lashes coming at us for February 28th, A Taste for Life rolls in April 23rd, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts and ACNBA’s 22nd anniversary in June. In July we’ll be holding World Hepatitis Day activities.

Our annual general meeting is slated for September and then we slide into the fall with AIDS Awareness Week and World AIDS Day November to December.

And before you know it we’ll be right back to where we are now, anticipating another new year of services, events and growth for ACNBA.

Our website ticker and Event Watch posts will keep you up to date with what we have going at any point during the year.

If you have any comments, suggestions or just want to connect with ACNBA you can always email us at oaacnba@vianet.ca, go to our Facebook page, send us a Tweet or just pick up the phone and give us a call at 705-497-3560.

So have a great year and keep checking in on us at www.aidsnorthbay.com

Cheers!

Kirk out!