Ringless Voicemails

Ringless Voicemails May Be More Annoying Than We Think

For all of you who’ve swapped out your landlines for mobile phones so you could get a little peace and quiet from those annoying robocalls, think again, they’re back!

You may be enjoying uninterrupted dinners these days, but if you haven’t already noticed, when you check your mobile phone after dinner, you’re left wondering, “26 messages? Who’s been leaving me all these voicemails?!”

Using a stealthy method, the unwanted callers you thought you had dodged, now have the ability to leave you ringless voicemails.

“A company called All About The Message (AATM) has developed technology that lets it deliver messages straight to a recipient’s voicemail without actually calling the phone,” reported Chris Morran of the Consumerist.

We’ve been shielded by the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), that has helped us to avoid robocalls on our mobile phones by not allowing mobile numbers to be targeted by robocall campaigns.

However, the AATM  may have found a loop-hole and “recently petitioned [PDF] the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), asking it to declare that such direct-to-voicemail messages fall outside the umbrella of the TCPA, or to grant the company a waiver to deliver these messages without fear of the penalties that could result from violating the TCPA,” said Morran.

From the looks of things, technically the technology would “stop” unwanted calls from ringing through to our phones, but realistically who said that going through a massive amount of voicemails was an alternative solution we’d all accept?

The FCC is hearing from both sides of the petition, businesses and politicians who feel the calls should be exempt from the law, and consumer advocates and technology experts who feel it will be difficult to sift through the flood of voicemails and find important calls.

Following the collection of public comments that closed on Friday, June 1, FCC spokesman Will Wiquist said the FCC is in the midst of reviewing the record and will consider a decision now that the public comment period is closed. However, no formal timeline has been posted as to when the petition will be resolved.

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