A new bill has been introduced in the United States House of
Representatives that would amend the "Do-Not-Call" Implementation Act
to eliminate the automatic removal of telephone numbers registered on the
registry. The bill remains in the early stages of the legislation process.
Approximately 132 million home and mobile telephone numbers
have been added to the database since its inception in June 2003.
The bill, H.R.3541, is a simple modification of the previous
rules, which allowed for phone numbers registered on the list to expire after a
certain amount of time, presently five years. The bill would prevent the FTC
from promulgating rules that would limit anything less than a permanent removal
for any number submitted to the list.
While a very pro-consumer move, this bill will be heavily opposed by marketers
and business interests. Their opposition has merit. Allowing the list to live
on in perpetuity would lead to numbers remaining on the list through numerous
transfers of ownership, eventually leading to every number in the nation being
on the list. The burden on consumers updating their numbers every five years is
very low, taking less than five minutes. The potential infringement on the free
market is greater than the very small burden on consumers. Accordingly, this
bill is not the best policy for the “do-not-call” list.