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Business using SMS-bulk messages (to customers)

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tissot421


Arresto Menor
I am part owner of a company operating in Manila and have been approached by a company which is offering GSM units to bulk text for marketing purposes. The pitch given by them is that legally we are able to contact our customers through SMS as long as they agree to be contacted.

In regards to the communications laws when it comes to bulk SMS messages (either in this case or as marketing to new customer) what is legally permitted and what is illegal?

I am sure that spamming random numbers of course would be illegal, as I have seen various stories online where companies have been fined for this. At what point do marketing communications become spam? e.g. if i send latest product updates to customers as and when they are available is that OK? Is it also ok to message potential customers who have been recommended or have expressed an interest? I would like to keep all of our business practices within the law.

I have tried searching for details on this online, but am going through pages of legislation with no luck.

Any help would be much appreciated. Smile

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Lunkan


Reclusion Perpetua
Were the stories you saw about illegal about the Philppines?
The laws are much diferent in different countries.
USA have rather hard laws.
In my home country in Northern Europe it's allowed to "spam" to them who are/have been cystomers allready OR have agreed to get messages.
I don't know if there are any law about that in the Philippines.

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tissot421


Arresto Menor
One i came across was this one from Philstar: (unfortunately I can't post a link)

"NTC stops 2 firms from sending spam"
MANILA, Philippines - The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) ordered two companies to immediately stop sending annoying spam messages to the subscribers of Ayala-led Globe Telecom Inc.

NTC has issued show-cause orders against Caritas Health Shield Inc. and Center for Global Best Practices due to separate complaints filed by Globe.

Globe stated in the complaints that the agents and employees of the two companies are involved in sending unsolicited promotional text messages to its mobile customers.

They were stopped from sending "spam" and had to pay appropriate penalties/fines, although there is no mention of how much this is. It also makes no mention of the amount/frequency of messages sent.

I have also managed to find some information from Section 4(c)(3) of the Cybercrime Law (Republic act 10175):

(3) Unsolicited Commercial Communications. — The transmission of commercial electronic communication with the use of computer system which seek to advertise, sell, or offer for sale products and services are prohibited unless:

(i) There is prior affirmative consent from the recipient; or

(ii) The primary intent of the communication is for service and/or administrative announcements from the sender to its existing users, subscribers or customers; or

(iii) The following conditions are present:

(aa) The commercial electronic communication contains a simple, valid, and reliable way for the recipient to reject. receipt of further commercial electronic messages (opt-out) from the same source;

(bb) The commercial electronic communication does not purposely disguise the source of the electronic message; and

(cc) The commercial electronic communication does not purposely include misleading information in any part of the message in order to induce the recipients to read the message.

Any the penalties:
Any person found guilty of any of the punishable acts enumerated in Section 4(c)(3) shall be punished with imprisonment of arresto mayor or a fine of at least Fifty thousand pesos (PhP50,000.00) but not exceeding Two hundred fifty thousand pesos (PhP250,000.00) or both.

So if i'm correct, sending bulk communications without following those rules means:

Between 1 month and 6 months in jail and/or 50k to 250k fine?

I'm still wondering about the interpretation of consent though, I assume the customer asking to be text of course is consent, but what if we include consent within the terms or conditions of using our service?

Also iii (bb) "The commercial electronic communication does not purposely disguise the source of the electronic message;"

Would this mean that sending the text from an alternative number would be classed as disguised? or is it more along the lines of writing "This is globe telecom".

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Lunkan


Reclusion Perpetua
"I'm still wondering about the interpretation of consent though, I assume the customer asking to be text of course is consent, but what if we include consent within the terms or conditions of using our service?"
ABROAD have many that as standard, but I don't know what's ok in the Philippines.

"Would this mean that sending the text from an alternative number would be classed as disguised? or is it more along the lines of writing "This is globe telecom"."
I INTERPRETE that being ok.

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tissot421


Arresto Menor
Thanks for your help, much appreciated Smile.

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Lunkan


Reclusion Perpetua
tissot421 wrote:Thanks for your help, much appreciated Smile.
But I didn't help any much Smile

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attyLLL


moderator
think of it this way, if you were charged by the NTC, what proof would you show that the customer consented? the norm is for them to sign up electronically


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