Are You Ready for Europe’s New Privacy Rules?

Note: The following is a repost of the newsletter I sent on the 21st.

Are You Ready for Europe's New Privacy Rules?

In this email I will share useful info about the new European privacy regulations that take effect next week, and also sheepishly admit that I am just now finding time in my schedule to comply with the new rules.

What is the GDPR?

The General Data Protection Regulation is a new set of privacy regulations that are taking effect next week. They are intended to unify all of the various privacy laws in Europe under one set of rules.

The rules cover everything from how you can use and store a person's information to the proper way for getting permission to send them emails.

You can read more about it on the GDPR website.

Who is impacted by the GDPR?

Just about everyone.

If someone on your mailing list is in Europe, or if you have sold ebooks to a European customer, then you will have to comply with the new rules.

Yes,  even though you may be outside the EU, you still have to comply with the regulations. Spam Titan explains why.

What do I have to do to comply?

That is a rather broad question whose answer depends on how you interact with readers, and the data you collect on them.There are different rules for when someone is your customer versus when they are on your mailing list.

At the very least you need to have a privacy policy that describes the data you collect as well as how it is collected, and more. Yes, we were all supposed to have one already, but a lot of freelancers and small companies ignored the issue.

If you need to write a privacy policy, this post will help you write one.

One aspect that has impacted a lot of customers is mailing list permissions. If you have a mailing list, you will have to make sure that your subscribers affirmatively knew they were signing up for the mailing list. In some industries it is SOP to give away free content in exchange for an email address which is then added to a mailing list.

That practice is not allowed under the new rules. If you need to learn more about the proper procedures for running a mailing list, Mailerite has a post that explains in detail.

Where can I learn more?

For starters, IBM has a webinar on the 22nd.  That webinar is focused more on businesses than authors, so it might not be entirely relevant.  Self Publishing Formula published a podcast on this topic earlier this month, and they also published a PDF guide. And if you are more of a reader than a listener, Self Publishing Review has a detailed blog post on the topic, and so does The Authors Guild.

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