Saturday, September 23, 2006


Strawdog Postcard Survey

Strawdog Theatre Company is doing an online survey regarding which theatres do postcard exchanges, mailing lists, etc. All theatres that complete the information will be given a copy of the results. The survey can be completed at
This is all I know about this; caveat actor (or rather producer). Note that some of the items they discuss, like email list exchanges, are controversial (e.g., non-opt in email lists, ignoring people's privacy preferences, possibly violating privacy laws by exchanging or handling personal information in sloppy ways). When using people's personal info, caveat actor.

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It is not against the law to send unsolicited emails - as long as you follow the can-spam guidelines which require the ability to Opt-Out and contain your full details (company name, address...etc.)

As for privacy preferences, each theatre company has to set thier own standards as to what they are ok with -- in regards to "lending out" information - mostly regarding how they collected that information. If in the survey you wrote that thier information would not be really shouldn't share it.

Exchanging contacts and information, for better or for worse is a standard practice for larger theatre companies -- just trying to get the resources together so those of us on the smaller end can help each other out.

Thanks for passing the information along.
FYI: Some states have strict laws about how personal information is used by corporations (e.g., California). By sharing it in violation of these laws, if even one person on your list is a resident of such a state, you could technically be breaking the law. Also, spamming may be legal (or not, depending on volume and jurisdiction) but it's still a bad idea. All that said, I shared info about the survey becasue the analysis of audience developement techniques is a great idea.
As Dusty Baker says -- not to beat a dead horse to death... but thankfully (or not so depending on how you look at it..) the Federal Can Spam Act of 2003 superceeds state law unless it is in relation to online scams/theft. Section II(a)(11) speaks to why this is probbaly a good thing.

The guidelines for sending legal email advertising is located here...

and if your really bored....

As to whether or not people should send unsolicited emails --well that is whole different conversation -- i just wanted to clarify that it is not against the law.
Yes, it's legal in the US, but if any of your address are to people living outside the US, it may still break the law. Anyway, spamming is a bad business practice legal or not.
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