Big news: Movement Towards Ending Robocalls!
First of all, we are moving this campaign forward!
This meeting would not have taken place if it were not for the hundreds of thousands of us that have come together to create the EndRobocalls.org campaign. After a year of all of us sharing the petition, telling our personal stories, and creating media buzz this is a big victory. Take a minute and pat yourself on the back- we are creating marketplace change among some of the biggest global countries in the world.
Here is the background: After a year of mounting pressure on AT&T, Verizon, and CenturyLink the companies started to feel the heat from the media, government, and most importantly, you, their customer base. So, they called their industry trade group U.S. Telecom, who in turn, called the campaign. They wanted to have a meeting to explain that they are taking the robocall epidemic seriously.
To be fair, the industry is working on the problem as a whole. The problem remains that their time lines for actually offering any real solutions is so far out of whack to what customers need and want. The companies also felt that more customer education was needed to help solve this problem. We assured them that Consumer Union activists are probably the most savvy and well educated customers in the marketplace. We also let them know that we are, along with most of the country, getting a daily if not hourly education on robocalls… because our phones keep ringing and reminding us.
Together we have made a strong step forward though. U.S. Telecom agreed that more can be done on industry’s end to give us easy access to solutions that already exist. A great example is Time Warner Cable’s recent announcement that Nomorobo, a third party robocall blocking vendor, is available to all of their phone customers by simply opting in.
This is the kind of small first steps we think that AT&T, Verizon, and CenturyLink can and should be making while simultaneously bringing their timelines for larger solutions in line with our daily reality.
We should be proud for forcing the companies to sit down and discuss solutions and start to come to an agreement to make existing solutions more accessible and usable. However, we can’t rest on our laurels. The big solutions are technologically feasible and should be made available quickly. The companies will continue to drag their feet so we have to keep the pressure on.
Stay tuned, for more updates and we continue our talks with the industry. We will report back any timelines that we are able to agree to. Then we will need your help in holding them to them. Also, we are planning on delivering our third set of petitions to AT&T headquarters in Dallas, TX. If you live in the area and would like to participate simply email me at TMarvin@consumer.org
Just getting a meeting was harder than it should have been but it only happened because of you! Together we can end robocalls!