On July 1, 2009, the Mobile Marketing Association ("MMA") issued the latest update to its "Consumer Best Practices Guidelines" -- the industry standard for mobile marketing. The new guidelines (the full version of which can be accessed here: http://www.mmaglobal.com/bestpractices.pdf) are, at over 100 pages, significantly longer and more comprehensive than the last version, which weighed in at a mere 21 pages in December, 2008. Most of this bulk can be attributed to the inclusion, for the first time, of individual "carrier playbooks" -- the codes of conduct of the four largest mobile carriers in the U.S. (Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile). The revised guidelines also contain new guidance on: (a) the PIN placement requirement for opt-in confirmation messages, (b) STOP and HELP functionality, (c) cross carrier standardization of "Msg&Data Rates May Apply" language (MMA now recommends ditching the antiquated "Standard Rates May Apply" in favor of this new language), (d) pre-checking "click-wrap" consents to Terms & Conditions, and (e) required initial (pre-opt-in) disclosures.
The Guidelines followed close on the heels of two other key developments affecting the world of mobile marketing -- the Ninth Circuit's June 19, 2009 opinion in Satterfield v. Simon & Schuster (previously reported on here: http://privacylaw.wildman.com/index.cfm?fa=resourcecenter.briefingroomdetail&oid=5579) and the Florida Attorney General's announcement on June 24 of its latest settlement with Verizon Wireless (which requires the implementation of a series of detailed "best practices" standards that impose significant compliance obligations). All in all, it's been a very interesting summer for mobile marketers!