The Federal Trade Commission is inviting consumers and other interested parties to participate in a public forum on January 11, 2000, to review the "do-not-call" provision of the FTC's Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR). The "do-not-call" provision prohibits sellers or telemarketers from calling persons who have previously stated that they do not wish to be called. This forum will be the first in a series of public forums the FTC will hold as it embarks on a year-long review of the TSR and the telemarketing industry that also will solicit written comments and academic studies.
In a Federal Register notice which will be published in the near future, the FTC notes that increased consumer awareness of their right to be placed on a "do-not-call" list has resulted in the Commission receiving numerous consumer inquiries on how to stop receiving telemarketing calls. The increasing consumer concern over unwanted telephone solicitations has prompted many state governments to enact or consider "no-call" legislation. The industry also has responded to consumer demand by establishing a Telephone Preference Service, administered by the Direct Marketing Association (DMA), which allows consumers to place their names on a "do-not-call" list used by DMA members. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) also has "do-not-call" regulations that resemble the FTC's regulations yet differ in many respects. As a result of these and other trends, the FTC has concluded that it would be beneficial to begin the rule review process with a discussion of the operation and efficacy of the TSR's "do-not-call" provision, including the interplay between the FTC regulations and other federal, state and industry initiatives.
Consumers, industry representatives and other interested parties wishing to participate in the forum must notify the FTC in writing by December 10, 1999. Notification of interest in participating in the public forum should be submitted in writing to Carole I. Danielson, Division of Marketing Practices, Federal Trade Commission, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Room 238, Washington, D.C. 20580.
Copies of the Federal Register Notice are available from the FTC's web site at http://www.ftc.gov and also from the FTC's Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580; 877-FTC-HELP (877-382-4357); TDD for the hearing impaired 1-866-653-4261. To find out the latest news as it is announced, call the FTC NewsPhone recording at 202-326-2710.
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(FTC File No. P99 4414) frn