As may know, on October 16, 2013, new rules governing mobile marketing went into effect. Pursuant to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is now requiring companies to obtain "express written consent" from consumers to market to their mobile devices. As defined by the FCC, ‘prior express written consent’ is an agreement in writing with a signature that authorizes the seller to make telemarketing calls or texts, including the use of an autodialer and prerecorded voice.
A number of companies, including MMA members, raised the issue of whether the new rules retroactively apply to customers who already provided express written consent. In light of this, the MMA rallied support from member organizations to submit a “Petition for Declaratory Ruling.” The document requests the FCC to explicitly state that the new TCPA rules do not nullify prior written consent, and thus companies do not have to ask consumers who previously granted written consent to re-opt in to receive future communications via mobile.
This coalition of members includes Monica Desai of Patton Boggs who expertly drafted the petition and has championed the cause alongside Jack Philbin of Vibes, as well as other executives. The MMA, Patton Boggs, Vibes and other companies met with members of the FCC on Tuesday to further explain our position.
The mission of the MMA includes demystifying confusion in the mobile space to ensure that industry authorities, such as the FCC, issue rules that are clearly understood and easily adoptable. That is why the MMA assumed a leadership position to tackle the ambiguity surrounding the new TCPA regulations and educate members on any changes across the mobile terrain.
There will be a public comment period announced by the FCC once the filings are reviewed and business is back to order from the recent shutdown. We encourage our members to submit comments to support the petition and we will keep the MMA community posted as things progress. In the meantime, Patton Boggs has offered to discuss the impact of TCPA regulations with member organizations. Additionally, please reach out to MMA’s general counsel, Cara Frey, if you have any questions: [email protected]
Stay tuned for future communications and please share this page with any colleagues that may be interested or invested in understanding TCPA. Download the petition here.