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CGB Seeks Comment on Petition for Declaratory Ruling Filed by RILA

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Released: January 22, 2014


Federal Communications Commission

News Media Information 202 / 418-0500

445 12th St., S.W.


Washington, D.C. 20554

TTY: 1-888-835-5322

DA 14-75

Released: January 22, 2014



CG Docket No. 02-278

Comment Date


February 21, 2014
Reply Comment Date


March 10, 2014

With this Public Notice, we seek comment on a Petition for Declaratory Ruling filed by the Retail
Industry Leaders Association (RILA) requesting that the Commission clarify certain aspects of the
Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), and in particular the prior written consent rules that became
effective October 16, 2013.1 RILA states that it is a trade association of the world’s largest retail
companies whose members include retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers that utilize
“on-demand text services” to facilitate consumer purchases.2 RILA describes on-demand text service as
providing one-time replies to consumer requests for offers via text message. For example, a consumer
might respond to a retailer’s “call-to-action” display by texting “discount” to the retailer which replies by
texting a coupon to the consumer.3 RILA notes that the reply text sent to the consumer does not include
marketing material unrelated to the information specifically requested by the consumer and no additional
offers are sent in response to the consumer-initiated text request.4
RILA states that TCPA does not apply to on-demand text service because these communications
are: (1) initiated by the consumer, not a telemarketer; (2) isolated, one-time messages sent immediately in
response to a consumer’s specific request; and (3) contain only the specific information requested by the
consumer.5 RILA asks the Commission to clarify that the rule requiring prior written consent to receive
text messages6 does not apply to on-demand texts because those texts provide information specifically

1 See Petition of Retail Industry Leaders Association for Declaratory Ruling, CG Docket No. 02-278, filed by Retail
Industry Leaders Association on Dec. 30, 2013 (Petition).
2 Id. at 2-3.
3 Id. at 3.
4 Id.
5 Id. at 1-2.
6 47 C.F.R. § 64.1200

requested by the consumer and do not contain any undesired marketing material.7 RILA argues that
application of the prior written consent rule in this limited set of circumstances would not comport with
the TCPA and the Commission’s related rules, and would be inconsistent with the Congressional intent
not to impede “desired or expected” communications between consumers and businesses.8 We seek
comment on the issues raised in the Petition.
Pursuant to sections 1.415 and 1.419 of the Commission’s rules, 47 CFR §§ 1.415, 1.419,
interested parties may file comments and reply comments on or before the dates indicated on the first
page of this document. Comments may be filed using the Commission’s Electronic Comment Filing
System (ECFS). See Electronic Filing of Documents in Rulemaking Proceedings, 63 FR 24121 (1998).
 Electronic Filers: Comments may be filed electronically using the Internet by accessing
the ECFS:
 Paper Filers: Parties who choose to file by paper must file an original and one copy of
each filing.
 Filings can be sent by hand or messenger delivery, by commercial overnight courier, or
by first-class or overnight U.S. Postal Service mail. All filings must be addressed to the
Commission’s Secretary, Office of the Secretary, Federal Communications Commission.
 All hand-delivered or messenger-delivered paper filings for the Commission’s Secretary
must be delivered to FCC Headquarters at 445 12th St., SW, Room TW-A325,
Washington, DC 20554. The filing hours are 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. All hand deliveries
must be held together with rubber bands or fasteners. Any envelopes and boxes must be
disposed of before entering the building.
 Commercial overnight mail (other than U.S. Postal Service Express Mail and Priority
Mail) must be sent to 9300 East Hampton Drive, Capitol Heights, MD 20743.
 U.S. Postal Service first-class, Express, and Priority mail must be addressed to 445 12th
Street, SW, Washington, DC 20554.
People with Disabilities: To request materials in accessible formats for people with disabilities
(braille, large print, electronic files, audio format), send an e-mail to or call the
Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau at 202-418-0530 (voice), 202-418-0432 (tty).
The proceeding this Notice initiates shall be treated as a “permit-but-disclose” proceeding in
accordance with the Commission’s ex parte rules.9 Persons making ex parte presentations must file a
copy of any written presentation or a memorandum summarizing any oral presentation within two
business days after the presentation (unless a different deadline applicable to the Sunshine period applies).
Persons making oral ex parte presentations are reminded that memoranda summarizing the presentation
must (1) list all persons attending or otherwise participating in the meeting at which the ex parte
presentation was made, and (2) summarize all data presented and arguments made during the
presentation. If the presentation consisted in whole or in part of the presentation of data or arguments
already reflected in the presenter’s written comments, memoranda or other filings in the proceeding, the

7 See Petition at 8.
8 Id. at 2, 11.
9 47 C.F.R. §§ 1.1200 et seq.

presenter may provide citations to such data or arguments in his or her prior comments, memoranda, or
other filings (specifying the relevant page and/or paragraph numbers where such data or arguments can be
found) in lieu of summarizing them in the memorandum. Documents shown or given to Commission
staff during ex parte meetings are deemed to be written ex parte presentations and must be filed
consistent with rule 1.1206(b). In proceedings governed by rule 1.49(f) or for which the Commission has
made available a method of electronic filing, written ex parte presentations and memoranda summarizing
oral ex parte presentations, and all attachments thereto, must be filed through the electronic comment
filing system available for that proceeding, and must be filed in their native format (e.g., .doc, .xml, .ppt,
searchable .pdf). Participants in this proceeding should familiarize themselves with the Commission’s ex


B. Lynn Follansbee, Consumer and Governmental
Affairs Bureau, Federal Communications Commission, (202) 418-1514, and

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