Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick

Do Not Call List Back On Again Legally

from the on-again-off-again-on-again-off-again...-on-again dept

In the past week and a half the national "do not call list" has been allowed and disallowed so many times, with different people and groups running it, opposing it, allowing it and voluntarily following it that it was getting to the point, that you could make the argument that Dave Barry had been given the legal right to call up telemarketers in the middle of the night and tell them he was hijacking their DNS typos. To say the least, it's been confusing. The latest, though, is that an Appeals Court in Colorado has ruled that the FTC can enforce the "do not call" list while the various challenges make their way through the courts. In theory, this means that the FTC can either go ahead and enforce the list themselves, or can hand over the list to the FCC and let them enforce it. You might recall that the FCC had wanted to enforce the list themselves, but the FTC was forbidden from giving them the list to enforce, leaving the only copy of the list in the hands of telemarketers themselves. At least for the time being, though, there's some stability - and the list should officially be in effect. However, the challenges will continue through the court system, so it may not last.

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  • identicon
    Mark, 8 Oct 2003 @ 9:58am

    The (do not) Call List

    Last night I got a taste of how this list will actually function, regardless of what the courts decide. There was a message on my answering machine from a "no-profit organization" promoting low-interest home loans. It was clearly telemarketing, but they were wrapping themselves in the banner of non-profits to comply with the terms of the list. What was most interesting was that I had never heard from them before, or from any loan agency telemarketer. The most likely conclusion is that they got my number from the Do Not Call List, which is now a Call List for anyone disreputable enough to treat it that way. Any bets on how many telemarketers will pass that ethics test?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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