back to article Repeatedly robocalling? That's a paddlin' – a record $3m paddlin'

US broadband watchdog the FCC has issued the largest robocalling fine in its history to a Florida company accused of repeatedly harassing people. The commission has levied a $2.96m penalty against Travel Club Marketing, which was accused of making at least 185 automated calls using a robo-dialer. According to the FCC, Travel …

  1. Herby Silver badge

    Penalties??

    Of course they are handed over to our wonderful government. Those who were robo-called (I got one today) and actually suffered probably won't get a cent.

    The FCC gets the $$$ and we peons just get more robo-calls.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Robo-callers, from Florida, selling time-shares?

    Why not just a death sentence?

    1. Steven Roper

      Re: Robo-callers, from Florida, selling time-shares?

      Preferably leading to the public executions of the entire board of directors.

    2. Zoopy

      Re: Robo-callers, from Florida, selling time-shares?

      Because we seem to have an unacceptable (to me, anyway) rate of false convictions in death-penalty cases.

      If we were certain beyond all shadow of a doubt, though, I'd definitely be in favor of some significant corporeal punishment.

  3. Tom 35 Silver badge

    What will be news is if they get a cent out of them.

    I expect they will make a midnight run, and reappear a week later with a new name.

  4. Ole Juul Silver badge

    outdated rule

    Robocalls made to mobile numbers are always required to have consent from the recipient.

    And how can they tell if the number is forwarded or not? Some people have multiple numbers and forward them all to their cell.

    1. Velv Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: outdated rule

      The fixed line number is a termination point as far as the law is concerned, and where you route calls beyond that is your problem

  5. Neil Barnes Silver badge

    It's a wonderful world we live in...

    Here's a hint, companies: if we haven't bought your product, it's most likely because we're not interested.

    When we want something, whether it's a new phone or a slitting saw or a paraglider or an insurance policy, the vast majority of us will actively search and compare for it: we neither need nor want it shoving in our face. Whether it is online adverts - fortunately, easily blocked - or haranguing us in the streets, or the appallingly rude assumption that a private communications device is intended as an advertising channel for you, it is unwanted and unwelcome.

    The reporting in the UK is that cold calling sells only to the vulnerable: the old, the easily confused, and people unable to make a decision for themselves. I don't see any reason to believe it would be any different in other countries. The mark of a civilised society is how it protects such people, and the ability of these bottom feeders still to exist pushing unwanted, unnecessary, and often sub-standard products suggests that we are not, as yet, civilised.

    A curse on all their houses.

    1. Little Mouse

      Re: It's a wonderful world we live in...

      You missed one off your list:

      Banging on our front doors at eight-thirty in the evening begging for money. Which is OK apparently, because "it's for charity". Grrrrrr.

    2. Velv Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: It's a wonderful world we live in...

      20 years ago a Marketing exec was telling me about her bold mailing campaign, and how a 2% return would be a good result.

      Not defending it, but I suspect that with the costs now so much less (no stamps, no printing) the return expected is orders of magnitude smaller to still get a "successful" campaign.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: It's a wonderful world we live in...

        "20 years ago a Marketing exec was telling me about her bold mailing campaign, and how a 2% return would be a good result."

        Did you ask her if that was net or gross? Every customer pissed off & lost should be set against the number of customers gained. Marketroids don't think about this of course. They daren't.

  6. disgruntled yank Silver badge

    At least 185 calls?

    A good robodialler can crank that out in a minute or so. Having said that, I applied the 142 or so citizens who raised a fuss.

    1. Gene Cash Silver badge

      Re: At least 185 calls?

      Yeah, it's a shame almost no one actually makes FCC complaints, despite a fairly well done website to help file such complaints.

      It got my ISP a beatin' a while back. I filed about the DNS records going to ads instead of failures, which screwed up a samba script. They responded with "everyone does it. suck it." so I made a further complaint saying essentially "so my ISP says if all my friends jump off a roof, I should too..." and the FCC fined them for not having an opt-out for the DNS bit.

  7. James 100

    Proper regulation

    It must be nice having a proper regulator with teeth! One day this week in the UK, I had nine telemarketing calls. All of them anonymous, of course, so no way to file a complaint against the offending entity - high time that facility was removed, or at least restricted and charged for to prevent abuse.

    (Yes, I do have a little PBX I'm going to hook to the line any day now to intercept all the anonymous calls and feed them to voicemail - but why should we have to go to these lengths?!)

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