Uber Defends Robocalls, Claims They Were Legitimate Political Messages

Uber Defends Robocalls, Claims They Were Legitimate Political Messages

A week after Uber was sued for allegedly spamming non-customers with text messages, the ridesharing service faces another complaint claiming intrusive telephonic behavior. This time, the plaintiff says Uber is violating federal and New York state laws with pre-recorded calls urging consumers to contact their local lawmakers. But Uber says the calls were political in nature, thus exempt from the robocall rules. [More]

App Called RoboKiller Takes Top Prize In FTC’s Anti-Robocall Contest

App Called RoboKiller Takes Top Prize In FTC’s Anti-Robocall Contest

The Federal Trade Commission’s vendetta against robocalls continued today as the agency announced the winner of a contest – and $25,000 – for building an app that blocks and forwards the annoying calls. [More]

“Travel Club” Telemarketer Fined $2.96M For Robocalling Consumers

“Travel Club” Telemarketer Fined $2.96M For Robocalling Consumers

Whenever we tell readers that it’s important for them to file complaints when they receive illegal robocalls, some inevitably respond that they believe it’s pointless and nothing ever comes of their gripe. But today, the FCC announced a nearly $3 million fine against a robocalling telemarketer following complaints from consumers who took the time to speak up. [More]

Usage: Consumer Reports September 2015
Story: Robocalls
Brand: CPR
Model: CallBlocker Protect
CU: N/A
Photographer: Rebekah Nemethy

Consumers Put Robocall-Blocking Devices To The Test

While we wait for phone companies to get around to offering services that help consumers block unwanted prerecorded robocalls, there are already several options available for people to use now, but not all of them may be up to the task. [More]

45 Attorneys General Agree: Phone Companies Should Give Consumers Ability To Block Robocalls

45 Attorneys General Agree: Phone Companies Should Give Consumers Ability To Block Robocalls

While the FCC tries to allow consumers to take a more active role in which calls they do or don’t receive, a group of 45 state attorneys general (well, 44 states and the AG for the District of Columbia) are calling on the phone companies to just stop dilly dallying and start offering call-blocking services already. [More]

Lawsuit Accuses Comcast Of Making 9 Months Of Robocalls To Collect On Paid Bill

Lawsuit Accuses Comcast Of Making 9 Months Of Robocalls To Collect On Paid Bill

A Philadelphia woman is suing Comcast, alleging that the hometown cable company not only spent nine months hassling her with debt collection calls but that the bill in question had already been paid. [More]

FTC And Florida AG Sue Company That’s Allegedly Behind Medical Alert Robocalls

FTC And Florida AG Sue Company That’s Allegedly Behind Medical Alert Robocalls

Reputable companies that sell personal emergency alert devices might air disturbing TV ads, but at least they mean well, don’t lie in their ads, and–here’s the important thing–don’t bombard America’s seniors with robocalls about the “free” alert system they’ve been given. The attorney general in Florida and the Federal Trade Commission have teamed up to stop this scam further up the food chain. [More]

PayPal Tweaking User Agreement To Remove Mandatory Robocalls

PayPal Tweaking User Agreement To Remove Mandatory Robocalls

PayPal’s new user agreement — the one that gives the company even more latitude to make obnoxious prerecorded marketing calls to “any telephone number that you have provided us or that we have otherwise obtained” — is set to kick in this week, but following an FCC warning that this policy might be in violation of federal law, and a letter from multiple senators asking PayPal to rethink its new terms, the company has agreed to make changes that “clear up any confusion.” [More]

FCC Votes To Give Consumers The Right To Block Annoying Spam Robocalls And Texts

FCC Votes To Give Consumers The Right To Block Annoying Spam Robocalls And Texts

You hate getting robocalls. The FCC knows you hate getting robocalls. And so today the Commission voted to move forward with a proposal that would allow consumers to block all those annoying calls and texts. [More]

Senators Ask PayPal To Change Obnoxious RoboCall Clause In User Agreement

Senators Ask PayPal To Change Obnoxious RoboCall Clause In User Agreement

Two weeks ago, we told you how PayPal’s revised user agreement expanded the company’s already-intrusive existing permission to send pre-recorded robocalls and spam texts, and how the company gave users no apparent way to opt out. Then the FCC chimed in, telling the company that its terms appear to violate federal law. Now, several U.S. Senators are asking PayPal to rethink its terms before they go into effect on July 1. [More]

FCC Says PayPal’s New User Agreement Violates Anti-Robocall Rules

FCC Says PayPal’s New User Agreement Violates Anti-Robocall Rules

We recently took a look at how PayPal’s already questionable user agreement is about to get even more invasive, giving the company a broader range of ways to contact customers with robocalls and spam texts, and with no apparent way to opt out. Today, the FCC notified PayPal that it has some concerns that the revised agreement might run afoul of federal laws. [More]

PayPal’s New Terms Of Service Mean More Robocalls, Spam Texts For Users

PayPal’s New Terms Of Service Mean More Robocalls, Spam Texts For Users

PayPal’s terms of service already include a clause giving the company permission to make prerecorded marketing robocalls to the number you provide them, and to send texts to that number if it’s for a mobile phone. But starting in July, PayPal is giving itself a lot more authority for bothering you — and not just on the phone number you have on record. [More]

FCC Proposes Giving Consumers Right To Block Telemarketing Calls & Texts

FCC Proposes Giving Consumers Right To Block Telemarketing Calls & Texts

You know what’s not awesome? Answering your phone only to be greeted by a prerecorded robocall telemarketing message. Even a decade after the establishment of the Do Not Call registry and rules banning certain types of robocalls, unwanted calls and messages still top the list of complaints to the FCC each year. Today, FCC Chair Tom Wheeler proposed closing some additional loopholes in order to cut down on these annoying intrusions. [More]

AT&T, Verizon Responses To Campaign To End Robocalls Unsurprisingly Empty And Noncommittal

AT&T, Verizon Responses To Campaign To End Robocalls Unsurprisingly Empty And Noncommittal

If there’s one thing consumers can agree on… well, it’s probably that they don’t like Comcast. But if there are two things that consumers can agree on, it’s that and also that robocalls suck. The tech to block robocalls is out there, but phone companies don’t use it. And their excuses for not doing so aren’t getting any better. [More]

Robocalling Phantom Debt Collector Accused Of Harassing, Defrauding Consumers

Robocalling Phantom Debt Collector Accused Of Harassing, Defrauding Consumers

People hate debt collectors, perhaps as much as, if not more than, they despise robocalls from telemarketers. And phantom debt collectors — those who attempt to collect debts that aren’t owed to them, if at all — are among the worst of the bunch. So when you combine the automated recorded messages of robocalls with the incessant harassment of phantom debt collectors, you create a particularly loathsome Frankenstein’s monster. [More]

(alexkerhead)

Another 130,000 Consumers Tell FCC: Don’t Allow Robocalling To Our Cellphones

Federal law currently bars companies from making automated, pre-recorded calls to your cellphone without obtaining explicit prior consent, but banks want to kick down that legal barrier so they can robocall without fear of penalties. In February, 60,000 consumers asked the FCC to just say no to opening this loophole, and today another 130,000 Americans are adding their voices in opposition to robocalls. [More]

Why Do Robocalls Continue In An Age Of “Do Not Call” And Strict Telemarketing Rules?

Why Do Robocalls Continue In An Age Of “Do Not Call” And Strict Telemarketing Rules?

Even though millions of Americans are on the federal Do Not Call list to limit unwanted telemarketing calls, and even though it’s illegal for anyone to make a commercial prerecorded robocall to a consumer who hasn’t given their express consent to receive such calls, the problem persists and is getting worse, with no cure-all solution in the offing. [More]

A diagram from the FTC complaint showing how millions of automated marketing robocalls were made each day under the guise of a political survey.

Telemarketers Accused Of Using Political Robocalls To Pitch Caribbean Cruise Packages

While people at various points on the political spectrum may disagree about many topics, one sentiment many of them share is a distaste for prerecorded phone calls from political organizations. Like them or not, they’re generally legal even if the recipient is on the federal Do Not Call list. But when you use a supposedly political telemarketing call to ultimately shill for a cruise line, you’ve crossed over into the dark side. [More]