After two years of providing service (mostly forums) we are doing a major update to users accounts. For the first time we want to send a notice to all our users about the account changes.
As most of the forums do, we have user names, and emails of our members. Every time a user sign ups, we send him an email with a temp password. Their profile settings let them subsribe/usubscribe to alerts/admin messages/updates/etc.
Now, My hosting provider has very strict rules for bulk mailings.
Here are our hosting provider rules for bulk emailing:
"Legitimate bulk email meets the following criteria:
1) The recipient has confirmed his willingness to be added to the distribution list of the mailing, by responding to a verification email, or, otherwise, verifiably confirming permission. (Evidence of such must be retained and available by request.) "
When asked what they mean by evidence, they say we must have it in writing that the user wants to receive emails from us. But who does this? I mean, I don't remember a single case when after signing up on a forum, I would in writing agree to receive updates. Usually it is just checkboxes on either registration page or user profile.
So I am concerned that if a user mistakenly marks my email as a spam I might have difficult time explaining that the email is legitimate.
How do you handle bulk mailing to your forum users with your hosting provider?