16 CFR 316.3 - Primary purpose.

§ 316.3 Primary purpose.
(a) In applying the term “commercial electronic mail message” defined in the CAN-SPAM Act, 15 U.S.C. 7702(2), the “primary purpose” of an electronic mail message shall be deemed to be commercial based on the criteria in paragraphs (a)(1) through (3) and (b) of this section: 1

Footnote(s):
1 The Commission does not intend for these criteria to treat as a “commercial electronic mail message” anything that is not commercial speech.

(1) If an electronic mail message consists exclusively of the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service, then the “primary purpose” of the message shall be deemed to be commercial.
(2) If an electronic mail message contains both the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service as well as transactional or relationship content as set forth in paragraph (c) of this section, then the “primary purpose” of the message shall be deemed to be commercial if:
(i) A recipient reasonably interpreting the subject line of the electronic mail message would likely conclude that the message contains the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service; or
(ii) The electronic mail message's transactional or relationship content as set forth in paragraph (c) of this section does not appear, in whole or in substantial part, at the beginning of the body of the message.
(3) If an electronic mail message contains both the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service as well as other content that is not transactional or relationship content as set forth in paragraph (c) of this section, then the “primary purpose” of the message shall be deemed to be commercial if:
(i) A recipient reasonably interpreting the subject line of the electronic mail message would likely conclude that the message contains the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service; or
(ii) A recipient reasonably interpreting the body of the message would likely conclude that the primary purpose of the message is the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service. Factors illustrative of those relevant to this interpretation include the placement of content that is the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service, in whole or in substantial part, at the beginning of the body of the message; the proportion of the message dedicated to such content; and how color, graphics, type size, and style are used to highlight commercial content.
(b) In applying the term “transactional or relationship message” defined in the CAN-SPAM Act, 15 U.S.C. 7702(17), the “primary purpose” of an electronic mail message shall be deemed to be transactional or relationship if the electronic mail message consists exclusively of transactional or relationship content as set forth in paragraph (c) of this section.
(c) Transactional or relationship content of email messages under the CAN-SPAM Act is content:
(1) To facilitate, complete, or confirm a commercial transaction that the recipient has previously agreed to enter into with the sender;
(2) To provide warranty information, product recall information, or safety or security information with respect to a commercial product or service used or purchased by the recipient;
(3) With respect to a subscription, membership, account, loan, or comparable ongoing commercial relationship involving the ongoing purchase or use by the recipient of products or services offered by the sender, to provide —
(i) Notification concerning a change in the terms or features;
(ii) Notification of a change in the recipient's standing or status; or
(iii) At regular periodic intervals, account balance information or other type of account statement;
(4) To provide information directly related to an employment relationship or related benefit plan in which the recipient is currently involved, participating, or enrolled; or
(5) To deliver goods or services, including product updates or upgrades, that the recipient is entitled to receive under the terms of a transaction that the recipient has previously agreed to enter into with the sender.

Title 16 published on 2014-01-01

no entries appear in the Federal Register after this date.