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DMA & FEDMA lead call for further discussion of ePrivacy Regulation

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The DMA and the Federation of European Direct Marketing Associations (FEDMA) - together with over 70 organisations from across Europe - are calling for EU policy makers and Member States to review the implications of the draft ePrivacy Regulation. The DMA is concerned about the potential impact on UK business of the current draft legislation and the knock-on effect to customers.

The ePrivacy Regulation, which is currently being reviewed in Brussels, raises a number of concerns for businesses and the marketing that is so vital to their continued success. The group has written to representatives from all the Member States working on the new laws outlining the concerns with the current text and asking for more time to discuss these fully.

The letter calls for the review of six issues within the proposed text, which require further work from policy makers to reach a balanced framework. These include the definition of direct marketing and of automated calling systems, clarifying the rules for business-to-business and communications from charities, and maintaining the existing flexibility surrounding communications to a company’s existing customers.

Chris Combemale, CEO of the DMA and Co-Chair of FEDMA, said: “The marketing industry is a very important part of the European economy and its future. It provides customers with personal experiences and enables direct communication between businesses and their customers, contributing to the success of the European economy as a whole. The provisions related to our industry in the ePrivacy Regulation must be carefully crafted to achieve the correct balance between privacy and innovation.”

Led by the UK DMA and FEDMA, the over 70 organisations are urging all Member States to review the current version of the ePrivacy Regulation and allow more time to discuss these fully. Only then will they ensure that the final text provides the right balance between protecting individuals’ privacy and continued economic development across Europe.

Specifically, the letter’s signatories are concerned that the provisions of the ePrivacy Regulation related to direct marketing in the Working Party on Telecommunications and Information Society (articles 16 & 32-35 and their according definitions), will not allow millions of brands to engage directly with their customers to deliver the services that they have become accustomed and which create a huge amount of growth in the European economy.

Dr. Sachiko Scheuing, FEDMA’s Co-Chair, adds: “The ePrivacy is not just about online tracking and confidentiality of communications. The proposal also provides a fundamental framework for the personalised marketing and advertising industry. This framework must be balanced and reflect the interest and the protection of users as well as enable the direct marketing industry to grow.”

FEDMA will be meeting EU Commission officials in the coming weeks to discuss this and other issues, and will continue to lobby for this position alongside member states and pan-European organisations.

Read the letter

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