TCPAWORLD AFTERDARK: R.E.A.C.H. Comments on the FCC’s Proposed NPRM Ahead of the Open Meeting–Seeks Middle Ground and More Time to Comment

Well, TCPAWorld was the first to bring you news of the FCC’s massive Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, and now R.E.A.C.H. has proven to be the first trade organization to weigh in on the Commission’s potentially disastrous NPRM.

In a new comment, filed today, the powerful new lead buyer trade organization supported the FCC’s overall mission of stopping unwanted calls by cracking down on the lead generation industry, but urged a “middle ground” approach should be adopted rather than a complete shutdown:

R.E.A.C.H. applauds the Commission’s efforts to end these abusive and inappropriate tactics, but respectfully suggests Public Knowledge’s proposal of removing all intermediaries between a consumer and an ultimate provider of a good or service goes much too far. Indeed, the Commission and Courts have repeatedly determined that consent can be provided to a caller via an intermediary. More broadly, it is well settled that contractual rights can be assigned and transferred with consent of the parties.

On the other hand, the Commission may certainly provide standards as to when it is reasonable for a caller to rely on express written consent. The adoption of the R.E.A.C.H. standard for consent would provide a firm and clear standard by which reasonableness might be assessed in the context of online webform submissions and impose reasonable limits on those purchasing such submissions. For instance, the R.E.A.C.H. standards limit the number of partners that may be included in a disclosure, clearly advise the consume —in a separate box akin to a Surgeon’s General warning— that telemarketing calls will result from an online submission, and prevent the use of prerecorded calls as the first contact to a consumer providing their information online, amongst other consumer-friendly requirements.

R.E.A.C.H. also sought additional time for stakeholders to weigh in on the comment process:

The Public Knowledge proposal contained within the NPRM may have drastic and wide-ranging impact on several key consumer-facing industries. Most participants in these industries are small businesses—companies with less than 20 employees—and most lack the high degree of sophistication necessary to recognize the importance of the issues presented by the NPRM and the necessity of joining in the process to assure their voices are heard.

While efforts are ongoing to educate and empower these small businesses—and others—to speak up about the impact the NPRM may have, building the robust record the Commission wants and needs to effectuate thoughtful policy will take more time than the proposed 30 days. R.E.A.C.H. submits that 60 days is an appropriate timeframe, but suggests 45 days as a compromise position to allow as many would-be participants to provide their thoughts and comments as possible.

You can read the entire comment here: REACH NPRM Comment with Standards.03092023

The Open Meeting takes places March 16, 2023–right after LeadsCon!–and the Baroness and I will be live blogging it. (Every time R.E.A.C.H. is mentioned in the meeting we’re going to do a shot–its the first day of march madness, after all!) We’ll then do a quick YouTube video breaking down what you need to know!

Speaking of LeadsCon, a ton of buzz around my HUGE session with the FCC and head of the RND database on the mainstage on the 14th at 10 am. You CANNOT miss this. Will be a really big deal.

Also I know A LOT of you are disappointed–dismayed–that LeadsCon will not be having a session with the Czar discussing the NPRM specifically (I offered…) but never fear– the Czar will be there along with Queenie and the Baroness and the Dame to provide DEFINITIVE and ACTIONABLE information for you on what to expect as the process plays out.

Plus there is this AMAZING breakdown we did with that everyone is still talking about:

For more GREAT content follow our INCREDIBLE YouTube Channel!

I guess I have to address–because my email is blowing up–the TON of comments about the oddness of the speakers this year. Don’t sweat it guys. I know that the original speaker slate was almost all men–eesh–until Queenie fixed (but they didn’t invite her to speak, which says A LOT, and nothing good.)

Then there was the decision NOT to have a TCPA compliance workshop this year (after our stellar 2.5 hour presentation last year), which really suggests that industry is taking a step BACKWARD on compliance, just when regulator scrutiny is at its highest. Not a great look, but scheduling priorities are what they are. I don’t take this stuff personally–and neither should you!

I’m still really looking forward to this event. Not only do we have the MASSIVE panel with the FCC and the head of the RND to look forward to, you definitely won’t want to miss the big R.E.A.C.H. AfterDark event on March 14, 2023 at 10 pm (reach out for an invite). And David Frankel will be attending personally (bet he crashes on my couch!) along with a bunch of R.E.A.C.H. board members so… yeah. Pretty big deal.

Love you TCPAWorld. Keep fighting the GOOD fight–you know I am– and see you all next week!


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