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Marianne Paskowski



There Oughta Be a Law

August 10, 2006 5:26 PM

I read something so disturbing today online -- that advertisers are now looking at text messages as the hot new medium -- that I accidently hit the delete button and now can’t remember where I read it.

That is lunacy and an invasion of my privacy. Several months ago, my mobile phone suddenly started to beep wildly, like all of the time, even though I had no voice messages. The problem was several teens had somehow gotten my number and started sending me all of their insipid text messages.

I would routinely kill them, without responding, but the volume -- and beeping -- grew to such a crescendo that I finally had to call Verizon to have the wireless provider put a block on my text message function. Since then, I’ve never had another and I certainly don’t want one from some packaged-goods maker trying to sell me a tube of toothpaste.

How is this gonna work? Shouldn’t advertisers, like e-letter providers, be required to seek permission, in other words, ASK the recipient to opt in and let them opt out?

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Comments (4)

Matt Villano:

I agree with your sentiments, but sadly many cell phone service providers are looking to tackle the permission issue in the contract we customers MUST sign in order to receive calls. The solution may be doing just what you've done, Marianne -- calling the provider after you've granted permission and asking them to block some or all messages. Another option: declining text features all together. Eventually I bet this stuff will become just like spam -- a neverending problem that wastes our time and brings profits to just about everyone in the email industry from service provider to software vendor.

Marianne:

I read this entry with great interest. Were you referring to the article published in USA Today last Tuesday? ("Ad campaigns for your tiny cellphone screen get bigger" http://www.usatoday.com/tech/wireless/2006-08-08-mobile-ads_x.htm )

Marianne Paskowski:

Matt,
Actually by blocking text messages I'm also saving a couple of bucks a month on my wireless bill.

Marianne Paskowski:

Bingo, Dave, that's the alarming article I had deleted

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