• CTIA, an association representing the nation’s largest wireless carriers, has filed comments in support of the petition for declaratory ruling of SoundBite Communications, Inc. at the FCC. See April 23 edition of This Week in Telecom. The petition asks the FCC to declare text messages confirming a consumer’s opt-out do not violate the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). CTIA argued that the messages are not governed by the TCPA because the messages are not “autodialed” — they are sent only to the specific subscriber that has made the request. Other commenters argued that, in light of a number of pending class action cases challenging the practice, the Commission should provide that any declaratory ruling would have only prospective affect. CTIA’s comments are available here. Reply comments are due May 15, 2012.
  • Verizon Wireless has announced that it plans to deploy a text-to-911 service by early 2013. The commitment was made in response to a challenge from FCC Chairman Genachowski for the wireless industry to expedite deployment of Next Generation 911 services. Verizon Wireless stated that it has contracted with TeleCommunication Systems, Inc. to deploy the technology.
  • Reply Comments to the FCC on the impact of a public safety network on Commercial Mobile Radio Service are due May 30, 2012. The call for comments was issued in response to a decision to suspend service in San Francisco’s subway system last August. The Public Notice asks for comment on several topics, including: past practices and precedents; bases for interrupting wireless service; risks in interrupting mobile communications; scope of interruption; authority to interrupt service; and the legal constraints on service disruption. The notice is available here.