Not Lovin' It: McDonald's campaign rebuked

Last updated 13:55 18/12/2012

Relevant offers

Digital Living

How the internet 'killed' Drake Tech giants divided over digital assistants Sony back to normal after cyberattack NZ Post may impose $20 parcel delivery fee if GST threshold slashed How good is the Warehouse mobile plan? Using tech to log your life Google launches quake alerts in NZ Victims made to tweet "Meow, I <3 catfacts" at Edward Snowden A guide to 'computerbabble' from 1985 Kim Dotcom's MegaNet a 'preposterous pipe dream'

Fast food giant McDonald's has been given a ticking off after launching an email marketing campaign aimed at children.

The company posted a "send to a friend" facility on its Happy Meal website last year which encouraged visitors to email links for McDonald's-themed games to their mates.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) ruled the marketing campaign contravened the Spam Act 2003 because recipients didn't consent to receiving the emails and they couldn't unsubscribe.

The Spam Act states it is illegal to send, or cause to be sent, unsolicited commercial electronic messages.

McDonald's removed the link in February and on Tuesday was given a formal warning by ACMA.

"A formal warning is a fairly stern thing, particularly for a company the size of McDonald's," ACMA's anti-spam manager Julia Cornwell McKean told AAP.

ACMA warned companies running similar marketing campaigns, which are found to contravene spam laws, that they could face tougher punishments in future.

"Really this is our first 'friend get friend' investigation. It's a formal warning," Ms Cornwell McKean added.

"But business should take heed that it won't be next time."

A McDonald's spokesman told AAP: "McDonald's takes its compliance obligations very seriously and fully respects the finding of the ACMA's investigation.

"The 'send to a friend' function was removed from the Happy Meal website in February 2012 and McDonald's has no intention of reinstating the function or any similar functions on its websites."

Ad Feedback



Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content