Dear Honorable Congressmen and Congresswomen,
Today I ask you to oppose H. R. 3035: To amend the Communications Act of 1934 to permit informational calls to mobile telephone numbers, and for other purposes.
This bill would strip citizens of the protections we have from abusive phone calls from companies. These onerous calls, which invade into a our private lives, family times, etc have long been blocked on land and cell lines.
This is a thinly veiled attempt to circumvent these long standing consumer protections. Today, many Americans depend on cell phones*. Instead of arguing that companies should have freer access to people via cellphone, I would argue the opposite. Cellphones are usually on the person at all times and thus much personal and critical.
Instead of just interrupting our dinners with Families, cellphones would allow solicitors and “robodialers” to invade our workplaces, our meetings, our commutes, our schools, public places, etc.
Many of us use our cellphones for critical contact; parents with children, doctors or professional; we live “on call.” Giving the freedom to robodialers to invade that channel of communication would greatly diminish the utility of cell phones for citizens and bring them few if any benefits in return. This only benefits corporations, which unlike citizens, do not have rights.
When your cell phone rings at 1:30 in the afternoon, as a parent you know it is an issue. When you phone rings at 9:00pm at night, as a professional you know that something important at work needs your attention. If this bill passes, you will now rush in a panic to wait through 15 seconds of silence for a recorded message inform you of your opportunity to get yet another Visa card.
I for one do not pay $79 a month for what my family calls “The Bat Line,” to subsidize yet another advertising venue.
* 91% (Arstechnica, March 2010) use cell phones, and a Reuters survey reported that 25% of Americans only use a cellphone.