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DMA chief urges e-marketers to learn from others' mistakes

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New York--E-mail marketers need to heed the harsh lessons learned in recent years by sweepstakes marketers and outbound telemarketers, Direct Marketing Association President-CEO H. Robert Wientzen said Wednesday in his keynote address at the DMA's net.marketing Conference & Exhibition.

"Policymakers, driven by years of consumer complaints and negative stories in the media--particularly the latter--about sweepstakes and telemarketing abuses, took action in ways that have dramatically constricted those marketing tools," Wientzen said.

To help fend off similar restrictions on e-mail, marketers must make consumer protection policies ingrained in their corporate culture, Wientzen said.

"We cannot--must not--forget we are in a new political environment," he said. "As you know, policymakers seem more inclined to take action in the privacy area. After all, politicians--in Washington and, importantly, the states, Republicans and Democrats as well--know that they're on to something that the public and press are very responsive to."

--John Obrecht

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