Do People Want A Mobile Phone Directory?

from the questions,-questions dept

There’s been a lot of talk over the last few months about the potential for a mobile phone directory. Many in the industry have been pushing for it, though, consumers fear for their privacy. Already sick of telemarketers on their landlines, they don’t want to start receiving such calls on their mobile phones as well. Those supporting the directory want to set it up so that you can only request the number based on a name, rather than get your hands on the entire directory — which, in theory, should eliminate the type of phonebook dialing that many telemarketers engage in. Of course, it just takes one screwup allowing the directory to get out there, and it won’t matter any more. The other part of the debate has been over whether such a directory should be opt-in or opt-out. The folks behind it have done a very odd sort of agreement on this, suggesting they could make it “opt-in,” but that you will have to pay if you don’t want to be included. In other words, a new fee could simply start showing up on your bill, and the way to get rid of it, would be to give out your mobile phone number. The latest in this ongoing debate is a new study suggesting that 52% of users would opt-in to such a directory if it had some privacy protection (just what kind of protection is not described and could make a huge difference). 11% would opt-in even without privacy protection. Of course, the study was done by a company who provides consulting services for the directory assistance industry — so you have to imagine they have some bias. A big new directory makes it more likely someone will hire them.

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Comments on “Do People Want A Mobile Phone Directory?”

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Oliver Wendell Jones (profile) says:

Would make me drop my cell service

1) I give my cell phone # only to people who I want to have call me. Period.

2) If my cell phone company decides to start charging me an additional fee for no good reason, it’ll be time to switch services. Period. I’m really sick of them trying to nickel and dime every service fee and charge that they can.

thecaptain says:

Re: Would make me drop my cell service

I got news for you…you are already being nickel and dimed to a large extent.

I challenge anyone to just take one month and in that one month go over every expense with a fine tooth comb and add up all the little service charges and fees that crop up…from the 1.50 for using an ATM of another bank to the “Fed.XN.sund” you might see at the bottom of your cellphone bill for 9 cents that you don’t want to spend 3 hours on hold to find out about.

You’ll see how much of your hard earned money is going to some corporation’s pockets.

Griffon says:

Totaly nuts

This whole thing drives me nuts, it’s such a blatant grab for consumers wallets. Nobody or certainly no majority, wants there phone number to be in a open network it’s just insane. Clearly they wan to build this so they can sell the data on anyone who won’t pay them blood money to stay out of it. I hope that as American consumers we can stand up to this and just say NO.

TJ says:

Competition to the rescue?

Verizon has said they will not participate. Being the largest carrier already, how many customers would switch to such a company to be confident their listing wouldn’t get leaked accidentally or to avoid the fee? Number portability makes such switches easier too.
Just in case though, I’m pleased that Congress will have a hearing on a proposed bill in the Fall that would prohibit charges to opt out.
As for overall pricing, competition already keeps cell phone companies more reasonable on some fees than landline TELCOs. For example, the landline I just cancelled came with a $8.50 monthly charge to get caller ID. That was 25% of the basic bill. I avoided voice mail because it was equally high. My basic cell phone bill is 50% cheaper than the landline was, and caller ID, voice mail, and more features are bundled in the price. That isn’t out of the goodness of the companies’ hearts. It is because customers are not at the mercy of a state approved monopoly.

YC says:

Re: Cell phone directory solution

Of course you’d feel that way. Its to your convenience and may be your job depends on it. What’s next? A Social Security directory, Only by name not the number, and if you choose to opt out we’ll screw you anyway by taking even more of your money when you get old. The whole thing makes me sick

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