Friday, October 19, 2012

Federal Government Moves To Limit Robo-calls: Will South Dakota Republicans Rejoice?

I have followed  South Dakota Robo-CallGate or whatever the it's going to be called with minor amusement. It will be interesting to see if South Dakota Republicans support this little bit of incentive based federal spending.
After years of using traditional regulatory tools to block billions of illegal marketing calls, the FTC is launching a public contest in search of new technical solutions.
The prize: $50,000
“The FTC is attacking illegal robo-calls on all fronts, and one of the things that we can do as a government agency is to tap into the genius and technical expertise among the public,” said David Vladeck, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “We think this will be an effective approach in the case of robo-calls because the winner of our challenge will become a national hero.”
The agency will accept entries between Oct. 25 and Jan. 17. Judges will score proposals based on workability (worth 50 percent), ease of use (25 percent) and the idea’s potential for a wide rollout (25 percent).
Applicants may submit ideas to block recorded marketing calls on landlines, cellphones or both. An entry that successfully stops both will be scored higher. The FTC says that many of those calls are deceptive or fraudulent. Such calls are illegal unless the marketer has prior written approval from the recipient.

I'm all for limiting robo-calls. In fact my wife and I seldom answer our home phone because we don't want to listen to a machine or a person telling us to buy stuff we neither want nor need. In this instance, however, I'm disappointed that I have not gotten neither one of these robo-calls. Heck, I'm not even on the mailing list to get a measly postcard. In order to increase my odds of hearing one of these calls that drives South Dakota's only political party's establishment into fits of hysteria, I hope that the incentive doesn't spur radically quick action.

No comments: