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The Canada Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has recently posted a public notice on their website calling for comments on several key issues regarding the National Do Not Call List, and specifically, the Unsolicited Telecommunications Rules that govern telemarketing calls in Canada. Of particular interest to consumers is the issue concerning term of registration on the DNCL.
Currently, the term of registration for a phone number on the DNCL is three (3) years, which means that each phone number must be re-registered on the DNCL every three (3) years. The Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) contends that, in the best interests of consumers, the registration period of a phone number on the DNCL should be made permanent. This would remove the burden placed on consumers of having to re-register their phone number(s) every three (3) years, and place the onus on the companies making the telemarketing calls to update their lists according to re-assigned phone numbers.
At this time, the CRTC has asked for public comments regarding these issues. While PIAC is pleased to be making submissions in these proceedings on behalf of the public as a whole, we are unable to carry individual consumers’ opinions to the CRTC, as comments pertaining to these proceedings are only accepted directly from interested individuals or parties. Those individuals who do wish to have their voice(s) heard on this matter may do so by making a direct submission to:http://support.crtc.gc.ca/crtcsubmissionmu/forms/main.aspx?lang=e
Another issue of concern to consumers with regards to the DNCL is the fact that, at present, the Unsolicited Telecommunications Rules do not apply to text messaging, meaning that DNCL-registered cellular phone numbers with text messaging capabilities are only protected from telemarketing calls they receive, but not from telemarketing text messages. PIAC contends that this does not take the best interests of consumers into consideration, but instead provides telemarketing companies with a loophole through which to continue contacting consumers who clearly do not want to receive unsolicited telemarketing communications. PIAC lent their support to Rogers in their bid to bring this issue forward during the upcoming CRTC review of the DNCL, however, Rogers’ request was denied by the CRTC.
PIAC would like to urge those consumers who have concerns regarding the exclusion of text messaging under DNCL rules to pass along their comments to the CRTC.