|Received:||11/27/2004 11:12:50 PM|
|Subject:||Trade Regulation Rule on Telemarketing Sales|
|Title:||Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, Request for Comment|
|CFR Citation:||16 CFR Part 310|
Comments:I as a consumer flatly oppose granting telemarketers the right to make unsolicited prerecorded calls when an existing business relationship exists, as described in the summary of this notice. Telemarketers stretch the definition of "existing business relationship" beyond all reasonable bounds. Calls from an actual human being are annoying enough, allowing prerecorded calls would eliminate one of the few things that limits their abuse of the "existing business relationship" exceptions to the do-not-call list. If they wish to deliver a prepared stock message, they can pay for direct-mail postage. If they want to interrupt what I'm doing and make me go and answer the telephone, the least they can do is have a human being to speak to. I believe that response to the do-not-call list has made consumer sentiment clear: we pay for our phone lines, and we do not consider the mere ability to contact us license for any salesman in the world to use those phone lines to try to sell us something. Certainly businesses and the telemarketing industry would like that license, but neither the government nor I are obliged to give it to them just because they want it. On a side note, in response to the telemarketing industry's continuous invocation of the First Amendment: the right to free speech does not and never has extended to a right to force an unwilling audience to listen, nor to a right to force an unwilling party to provide a venue for that speech.