FCC’s robocall rule gets axed by court because it’s too broad

Theoretically speaking, it also made some smartphone calls illegal too and subject to a fine.

Previous FCC leadership took some aggressive actions to deal with robocalls, but a new decision by the court just scaled back a rule that helped fight robocalls. A DC Circuit appeals court has decided to shoot down an FCC rule for reportedly going far in its definitely on an autodialer.

The regulations ha defined an autodialer as any device that could dial numbers that were either stored or produced using a number generator; however, Judge Sri Srinivasan thinks that’s too generic. He added that some smartphone calls theoretically broke the law. In an example noted by the judged, you technically faced a $500 fine if you called someone to invite them after getting their phone number through a friend.

You know who is happy about the decision? The current, pro-deregulation FCC. Chairman Ajit Pai called the rule a “misguided decision” and added that the agency needs to instead focus on “bad actors.” Credit card and bank companies were quite eager for this rule to be gone because they were worried that they would break the law through some calls to their customers.

While FCC Chairman is happy, not everyone is. FCC commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel warned that robocalling is “already out of control,” and argued that the volume of spam calls would “continue to increase.” She further said that the FCC needed to offer a “serious response” to the situation.


Hamza Khalid

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