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FCC Issues New Rules For Robocalls

February 20, 2012 by  

FCC Issues New Rules For Robocalls

New rules approved by the Federal Communications Commission put limits on telemarketing companies that call or text message you.

According to CNN, the rules will expand upon limits put in place in 2008 by the FCC regarding automatically dialed or pre-recorded calls known as “robocalls” and automated text messages.

The new rules stipulate that telemarketers would have to get permission in writing before placing an automated call to a consumer. Before the change, companies with an established business relationship with a particular consumer can call them without permission.

Information calls, regarding things like school closing information and flight cancellations, are an exception. They can be made to land-line phones without written permission, but cellphones and text messages have stricter rules.

The companies will also be required to let you opt out of any future calls during their robocall.

Sam Rolley

Staff writer Sam Rolley began a career in journalism working for a small town newspaper while seeking a B.A. in English. After learning about many of the biases present in most modern newsrooms, Rolley became determined to find a position in journalism that would allow him to combat the unsavory image that the news industry has gained. He is dedicated to seeking the truth and exposing the lies disseminated by the mainstream media at the behest of their corporate masters, special interest groups and information gatekeepers.

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  • http://none Dennis

    What about the telemarketers that call and pretend they dialed the wrong #, but immediately try to give you their sales pitch anyway?

  • Chester

    Well, Dennis, sounds as if they weren’t doing “robo-calls” in the first place. Those are direct dialed by the salesman or woman talking to you, even if all they did was punch the next button on their computer. I will agree these in particular should be stepped on, but how do you defend against wrong numbers in the first place. Do you want to have to give written permission to all before they can call, friends and family included?

    • Joe H

      Simple, AT&T has a service called privacy manager. someone calls and if they don’t give a viable call-back number, it asks you if you want to accept it. during this it announces a call from – and here the company either gives you a name or you refuse! If it is a company or person that you don’t wish to talk to, you refuse as well. This also stops the occaisonal *67 call that will hide the number!

  • Sirian

    Another small step towards governmental control over every aspect of our lives. This may initially seem as nothing to be overly concerned with. But that is exactly as they usually weasel these things into place. It’s been going on for years and years. Look around, if it isn’t in this area then look elsewhere. It’s not going to in the end make things better, it will become more of a monster than most of us realize.

    • ChuckL

      Sirian, Perhpaps you do not have any changes for your incoming cell phone calls. I DO! These calls cost me generally $0.45 each. They must be stopped. Written “OPT-IN” via “Snail Mail” mandatory.

      Some of us who use cell phones for a telephone when needed still only use “Pay as you go” systems.

      • ChuckL

        Sorry for the typo.
        “you do not have any changes” should read “you do not have any charges”

  • s c

    What’s the big deal? If you love big government, you think the world’s greatest minds [Lenin, Marx, Stalin, Hitler and certain American utopian icons] have made your life worth living, then there’s no reason to think of robocalls as bad.
    You should be eager to get those robocalls. They’re “good” for you. As Obummer and Queen Pelosi might say, “A day without robocalls is like a day without sunshine.” They no doubt love getting them, so YOU should, too!

  • roger w. rohe

    This is just another smokescreen. I’m on no call for home & cell lines. Still get the calls. Complain & nothing happens. Gee, I wonder how many $ are being donated to our congress.

  • Cliffystones

    Will this put a stop to all of the “Romney for President” robocalls I got before the Colorado caucuses?

  • Marlene B.

    I would love it if I got no more calls from ‘Rachel’ of Credit Card Services. That’s one I’ve been getting since March of 2007, sometimes daily, sometimes twice a week. I’ve punched the number to opt out of the calls but they’re ignored. I report every call to the Do Not Call Registry, for both the landline and cell. Oddly enough, these calls never began until I registered my phones with the ‘Registry’ and I’m becoming convinced that the government is selling our phone numbers to the robocall companies. What else can one believe when the Registry gets probably thousands or more complaints on one outfit over a period of 5 years with no action taken? You should read the comments on the “I’m sick of Rachel” website. I’m not alone in my growing hatred of that harassing outfit.

    • Libertytrain

      Marlene – I get the same calls from credit card services and have threatened as well however, it doesn’t stop. Off and on, sometimes for week. IT IS A BOGUS account trying to get credit card info according to whomever I checked for the phone number they have.

      • Marlene B.

        I’ve stayed on the line and asked the live person to remove me from their calling list and they hang up on me. I’ve told another live rep that I’m hard of hearing so would appreciate them sending me written information, only to be hung up on. I’ve tried hitting the # button on the phone over and over. At first that would make the recording disconnect, now it just talks ona and on so I’ve hung on until they hang up. Nothing stops them and the governments Do Not Call Registry never investigates or does anything so DNCR is a total farce. I used to wonder how the Registry was financed. Now I’m convinced it’s money comes from the sale of our numbers. The pests have called at 6:00 am and 11:00 pm even so they’ve no respect for anyone.

      • Joe H

        Libertytrain,
        Look at your caller ID and if it says 1-800- don’t answer!! I’ve had to get mean with a couple of bill cpollectors that called ME looking for aq neighbor down the street. I guess they look up a listing of all numbers around his address and call ones near by. Had one even tell me the guy gave them my number. I told them not likely and if I got another call I would take them to court for harrassment. They stopped!!

      • Libertytrain

        Joe, I don’t have or want caller id at this point in life. However, I did have a serious prob with a bill collector seeking someone that must have had my phone number at least 15 years ago – cause that’s how long I’ve had it (13 years at that time). And they were a pain. I filed a complaint, filed with the phone company, do not call list and a few others and that seems to have ended – been a couple years since my last harassment by them. All they had to go on was that at one time my phone number was his.

    • Libertytrain

      they are pests but I don’t as a rule get calls from anyone else other than the “allowed” calls by the registry. These folks are just probably stealing so much information they don’t care if they are fined.

  • RNW

    I am on all the “do not call” lists, but I still get unwanted calls. When I question why they are calling they say, “it’s a survey and they are not selling anything, so the d.n.c. list does not affect this call. Even if it’s true, they still waste time. We need phones that give us a way to store spam numbers (the same way we can store spam email addresses) so that we can quietly reject these calls. It would be some trouble store them, but at least that number would not bother you again. I get a lot of “survey” calls from the same number.

  • Wumingren

    The tide would turn if we were allowed to implement for-profit numbers on our home phones. If each incoming call was charged a connection fee, waivable for friends and family and businesses with whom a relationship has been established (white list), then I wouldn’t mind getting all the robo-calls in the world. For those not white-listed, each sucessive call gets charged double the amount of the previous call, with no limit to the ultimate charges that would apply. So, it would go from, say, $1, to $2, to $4, to $8, $16, $32, $64, $128, $256, $512, $1024, $2048, $4096, $8192, $16,384, etc.

  • HAZEL

    I GET SEVERAL CALLS EACH DAY FROM NUMBERS I DO NOT RECOGNIZE. I HIT THE ANSWER BUTTON AND IMMEDIATELY HIT THE OFF BUTTON. AFTER A WHILE THE CALLER GETS THE POINT AND STOPS CALLING. IF THE SAME NUMBER SHOWS UP SEVERAL TIMES I HIT THE ON BUTTON AND PUT THE PHONE DOWN NEAR A RADIO OR TV AND WALK AWAY. THIS WORKS WELL ALSO.

    • Joe H

      Hazel,
      don’t know if it’s changed, but they used to not be able to hang up till you did according to their job description. I used to set the radio to static and lay it down next to it!!

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