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FCC Busts AT&T on 'Do-Not-Call'

Light Reading
News Analysis
Light Reading
11/3/2003
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The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) today issued a statement proposing to fine AT&T Corp $780,000 for apparent violations of the Commission’s Do-Not-Call (DNC) telemarketing rules. This is the Commission’s first major Do-Not-Call enforcement action (see FCC May Fine AT&T Over DNC).

The notice is particularly unfortunate for AT&T, as it was selected by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in February this year to develop and implement the National Do Not Call Registry (see AT&T to Block Telemarketers).

At the time of the contract award Chris Rooney, president of AT&T Government Solutions, said: "This high-profile award again validates our role as a trusted source for integrated solutions and launches us far beyond our historic position as a telecommunications provider.”

This claim of being trustworthy looks a little out of place now that the FCC has charged AT&T with breaking its own company-specific list of DNC numbers by calling 29 consumers on 78 separate occasions after those consumers had requested that AT&T not call them again.

Read the rest of the story -- if it won't interrupt your dinner -- on Boardwatch.

— Jo Maitland, Senior Editor, Boardwatch

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Paul Andrews
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Paul Andrews,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:17:24 PM
re: FCC Busts AT&T on 'Do-Not-Call'
I suppose the FCC must make these gestures occasionally to show they are doing the people's business and protecting us all from the big, bad, telemarketers.

Sadly, a reading of the actual FCC order reveals nothing more than a handful of minor complaints from over-sensitive people.

The stories all seem to have the flavor of "I told them to put me on the do not call list! And you know what they did?! Three years later, they called me again! How dare they!"

Lighten up, I say.

Now, for sure, AT&T has a responsibility to keep and maintain this do-not-call list, and I am no fan of the company.

Still, these mistakes seem far from abusive of anyone. Except, perhaps, abusive of AT&T by the FCC.
aspicer
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aspicer,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:17:22 PM
re: FCC Busts AT&T on 'Do-Not-Call'
I agree with Paul Andrews. The complainers are probably over-sensitive people. IMHO if someone really wants to avoid answering calls that they do not want ... at home ... they should use Caller ID and not answer any UNKNOWN calls where they cannot or do not receive (or recognize) the NAME or PHONE NUMBER of the caller.

And if a certain time of day is very important, let's say DINNER TIME is really sacred (as they say?) then they should disconnect the phone(s) or take them OFF-HOOK (busy out the line). After all you are in "Do Not Disturb" mode at THAT TIME so hang out the BUSY SIGNAL do-not-disturb sign.

Personally, I am on the DND list and I still receive calls. I'm not sure if everyone is required to have/check that list? Civic organizations seeking donations, small companies?

Some of them might be "upset" because they do have to answer most calls, because they might be Looking For Employment or have family living out of the U.S., or even family in the U.S. which does not announce Caller ID. Personally when I don't want to answer UNKNOWN callers ... I don't. If something is important enough the caller will say something about it onto my Answering Machine, and I'll grab the call if I think it's important.
aspicer
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aspicer,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/4/2012 | 11:17:22 PM
re: FCC Busts AT&T on 'Do-Not-Call'
On a funny aside not to this, if you have family with teens or young adults ... living at home or not ... you'll probably get a lot of their friends calls. Who can keep track of them all? "Can you tell <your daughter="" son="" ||=""> that I called". You end up playing personal assistant or secretary for them. Some friends pop up weeks, months, year(s) later; and others call a lot. Yah can't block 'em ;-)

I don't hear anyone complaining to the FCC about that!!!! And think it is a national crisis!!!!! ;-)

Today, while taking a 48 question online test, I took 3 calls. And still scored 77% on a difficult test in 16-minutes time frame.</your>
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