Contests & Social Media


Need contest rules and forms for a Canadian Contest?: I offer a selection of Canadian contest rules and forms for common types of Canadian contests. For more information see: Contest Forms.


Social media continues to be essential for effective advertising and marketing, including in connection with promotional contests. Social media, including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn and Instagram, may be used to promote a contest or be an active part of entry and participation.

Contest promoters should be aware, however, that most social media platforms have different contest specific terms of use that must be complied with. These terms of use typically not only apply where a particular social media platform is used as an active means of entering and participating in a contest (e.g., liking a page or tweeting) but also where the platform is merely used to promote or publicize the contest (i.e., hosting contest materials on the sponsor’s social media page(s)).

In addition to general requirements, such as requiring sponsors to comply with applicable contest laws, many social media sites also have specific terms and conditions including disclaimers required for rules and releases, guidelines as to whether a contest must be free to enter and restrictions on using some social media functions for a contest.

For example, Facebook’s Pages Terms include Promotions Rules, which include the following requirements for promotions that are “communicated” or “administered” using Facebook: operating the promotion lawfully, including official rules and eligibility requirements; complying with all applicable legal and regulatory requirements; having entrants release Facebook; and an acknowledgment that the promotion is not sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.  Facebook’s terms also include specific restrictions on its functionality when running a contest.

The terms and conditions of other major social media sites contain rules, which vary depending on the platform, for running contests, which, if violated, can lead to page takedowns or account suspension.

Social media sites’ contest related rules also change from time-to-time.  As such, contest promoters should check the specific requirements for each social media site they plan on using before launching a promotion, ensuring that contest rules and forms are compliant and that the way the contest is planned to be conducted will not violate the sites’ rules.

For more information about Canadian contest law, see: contests.



Contest Law

I offer a full range of Canadian contest legal services for compliance with the Competition Act, Criminal Code and other relevant laws.  My services include: preparing contests to comply with relevant federal laws, drafting short and long contest rules and statutory disclosure, reviewing promotional contest marketing and advertising materials for Canadian advertising law compliance and winner releases.

Advertising Law

I help clients practically navigate Canada’s advertising and marketing laws and offer Canadian advertising law services in relation to print, online, new media, social media and e-mail marketing.

My Canadian advertising law services include advice in relation to: anti-spam legislation (CASL); Competition Bureau complaints; the general misleading advertising provisions of the Competition Act; Internet, new media and social media advertising and marketing; promotional contests (sweepstakes); and sales and promotions. I also provide advice relating to specific types of advertising issues, including performance claims, testimonials, disclaimers and native advertising.

Competition Law

I offer business and individual clients efficient and strategic advice in relation to competition/antitrust, advertising, Internet and new media law and contest law.  I also offer competition and regulatory law compliance, education and policy services to companies, trade and professional associations and government agencies.

My experience includes counseling clients on the application of Canadian competition and regulatory laws and I have worked on hundreds of domestic and cross-border competition, advertising and marketing, promotional contest (sweepstakes), conspiracy (cartel), abuse of dominance, compliance, refusal to deal, pricing and distribution, Investment Canada Act and merger matters.

To contact me about a potential legal matter: contact.