Press Release
May 2, 2006


Senate Minority Leader Aquilino Nene Q. Pimentel, Jr. (PDP-Laban) today urged the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) to impose sanctions on telecommunications companies that have defied its order to temporarily suspend the sending of commercial advertisements in the form of text messages via cellular phones.

Pimentel made the move even as he lauded the order of the NTC, headed by Commissioner Ronald Olivar Solis, to suspend the transmission of the unsolicited advertisements for a one-month period.

The NTC order was issued following Pimentels call for the complete stoppage of this malpractice in the wake of an avalanche of complaints from cellphone users about the unwarranted diminution and depletion of their phone call load due to the unsolicited text advertisements.

Pimentel said he continues to receive complaints from mobile phone owners that they keep receiving unauthorized text advertisements despite the NTCs suspension order.

The jubilation of cellphone users over the NTC order was short-lived because they found out to their dismay that the service providers have ignored the suspension order. The sending of the unsolicited text ads hasnt stopped, the senator said.

Pimentel said that it has been shown that the text advertisements eat up the phone call load even if the phone users text back the service providers to stop the sending of such messages.

He maintained that the unsolicited text advertisements is illegal and punishable by law.

Pimentel also asked the NTC to permanently ban the sending of unsolicited text ads, instead of merely suspending it for one month.

He said the failure on the part of service providers to discontinue this malpractice would merely confirm the suspicion that they are raking in handsome returns from the text advertisements which explains why they are tolerating it.

Pimentel has formally asked for a Senate inquiry into the matter.

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