|Received:||11/28/2004 2:11:33 PM|
|Subject:||Trade Regulation Rule on Telemarketing Sales|
|Title:||Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, Request for Comment|
|CFR Citation:||16 CFR Part 310|
|Attachment:||OL-103681.pdf Download Adobe Reader|
Comments:Opening the Do Not Call list to automated calls violates the very spirit of the act. The intent was to reduce unwanted telemarketing calls to those consumers who signed up for FTC protection. It was not to provide a new source of telemarketing targets to marketing firms. Allowing automated calls actually makes the problem of unwanted telmarketing calls worse than it was before. Instead of dealing with interruptions to deflect unwanted solicitations from marketers, consumers would be dealing with unwanted interruptions deflecting calls from computers. Since these calls would be automated, there would be no one to complain to. And since they are pre-recorded messages the cost to marketing organizations plummits, making even more widespread calling affordable. What a boon to marketers - lower costs, lower complaints, and higher calling volumes. Great deal for marketers, lousy for your constituents. As to point two, changing the measure of abandon calls, I object. It opens a huge portal for manipulation of statistics. For example, it allows for an 8 day campaign to average it's abandoned calls over 30 days, effectively allowing for a 60% abandonment rate during the actual time the campaign is active. It does this by allowing the marketing firm to have "planned 30 day campaign" to run an actual (and therfore cost consuming) 8 days. They can then spread the abandoned call rates over 30 days, lowering their average back into compliance. Meanwhile, the can start up 3 more campaigns under the same scheme, continuing the high abandoned rate calling and spreading the losses over 30 days. Oh, and here's a question for you - how long before some bright lawyer is able to convince a judge or legislator that responding to an "opt-out" is a transaction and thereby constitutes a relationship, allowing for addtional calls to a now "known good" phone number? You've just opened up a whole new world of marketing possibilities. The Do Not Call legislation has been very effective at reducing the unwanted intrusions of marketing firms into the lives of consumers across the country. Amending the regulations to violate the spirit of the law is a betrayal of the trust placed in the FTC by consumers. A copy of this message, along with pointers to reference information, will be forwarded to my Congressman and Senator.