Facebook Contest Rules – Canada

Facebook Rules and Regulations

If you are planning to run a Facebook contest it is important to check the rules first – both the Facebook rules as well as the laws and regulations in your region.

What you CAN do ...

  • ask people to like or comment on a post on your Page (ex: like this post to enter)
  • ask people to post on your Page (ex: post your cutest baby picture on our page to enter)
  • ask people to send your Page a message (ex: message us your name to enter)

What you CAN’T do …

  • ask people to share your post on their profile as a way to enter
  • ask people to share your post on their friend’s profile to get additional entries
  • ask people tag your friends in the post to enter

What you HAVE TO do …

  • include a complete release of Facebook by each entrant or participant.
  • acknowledge that your promotion is in not sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.

Every single time you run a contest online you should re-check the guidelines, rules and regulations prior to launching your promotion. Rules will often change and to prevent having your page shut down you need to stay current on the latest information.

You can find more info here…
Facebook Promotional Guidelines
Facebook Contest/Sweepstakes Information
Facebook Page Guidelines


Canadian Rules & Regulations

It is also VERY important that you research contest regulations and laws in your region.

It is necessary to include the following information when announcing and promoting a contest in Canada:

  • the number of prizes to be won
  • the approximate value of each prize
  • the area (or areas) to which they relate
  • any fact that may affect the odds of winning

Make it a priority to define your contest so that everyone knows how to enter, who is eligible, what the prize is and what the odds of winning are. You also want to make sure you are not unintentionally running a “lottery” type contest…

“…it is necessary for contest organizers to structure their contests in Canada to avoid violating the Criminal Code. As such, contest organizers commonly remove either the consideration element (e.g., providing a “no purchase necessary” entry option), the chance element (e.g., including a multiple-step mathematical question as a condition of winning) or both in order to remove a promotional contest from the scope of the illegal lottery provisions of the Criminal Code.

You can find more info here…
Promotional Contest Law in Canada
Running an Online Contest, Don’t Run Afoul of the Law

When running a contest you need to research the legal requirements in your specific region. Ensuring that you follow the comprehensive laws is your responsibility. This post is intended for general informational purposes only.

Here is a great (and current – 2015) video on how to run an effective Facebook contest for your business.

Krista Tannahill
Krista Tannahill is a WordPress web designer & trainer, social media consultant and online marketing specialist in Nova Scotia, Canada. Ki Digital Media specializes in digital marketing, training and support for businesses.

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