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Unsolicited Marketing Calls to Cell Phones Are Illegal: With or Without a Cell Phone DirectoryWashington, September 2, 2005 – The Direct Marketing Association (The DMA) is warning consumers, legislators, and regulators about bogus e-mails that are causing anxiety about new proposed cell phone number directories. An urban myth has resurfaced in recent days claiming that proposed directories of cell phone numbers are being compiled for use by telemarketers.
Although there may be efforts to compile cell phone directories by phone companies, such directories may not be used for unsolicited telephone marketing calls, according to a 1991 federal law. The 1991 Telemarketing Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) makes it illegal for solicitation calls to be made to wireless phone numbers without clear permission from the individual to whom a number has been assigned.
The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and its members continue to support vigorous enforcement of the absolute restriction on unsolicited calls to cell phone numbers for marketing purposes and urge federal and state authorities to prosecute those who may engage in this illegal activity. Moreover, The DMA continues to work aggressively with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to protect against cell phone solicitations by ensuring that marketers understand and comply fully with the law.
To help our members prevent even inadvertent unsolicited telemarketing calls to cell phones, the DMA offers the following:
The Direct Marketing Association (www.the-dma.org) is the leading global trade association for businesses and nonprofit organizations that practice and support direct marketing. As more marketing increasingly becomes direct marketing and utilizes a growing number of media, The DMA facilitates the pioneering of new frontiers in the industry by providing cutting-edge research, education and networking, as well as advocacy and brand-building benefits. By promoting these advances and establishing industry standards, The DMA enables members to better reach consumers with more personal, relevant and desirable offers.
In 2004, direct marketing generated more than $2.3 trillion in U.S. sales, including $143.3 billion in catalog sales and $52.5 billion in Web-driven sales. Founded in 1917, The DMA today has more than 5,200 corporate, affiliate and chapter members from the US and 44 other nations, including 55 companies listed on the Fortune 100.