Telemarketing Software Featured Article

Government Helping Telemarketers? Actually, Yes

April 29, 2016
By Rory J. Thompson - Web Editor

Usually when the government starts poking around your business, everyone gets nervous. There’s a reason for that long-standing joke where everyone laughs when someone identifies themselves as: “I’m here from the government, and I’m here to help you.”

Still some recent rumblings out of D.C. might well be an easing of the burden that telemarketers bear.

According to legal website, the Federal trade commission is set to receive comments on its current Telemarketing Sales Rule. “The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is seeking comment on the disclosure, recordkeeping, and reporting requirements of its Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR (News - Alert)),” according to attorneys for Venable LLP. “The deadline for public comment is June 13, 2016.”

 The public – but especially those in the telemarketing business – are invited to comment of four specific issues:

  • Whether the TSR's disclosure, recordkeeping, and reporting requirements are necessary, and whether the resulting information is useful;
  • The accuracy of the FTC (News - Alert)'s estimates regarding the burden that such information collection requirements impose on covered entities;
  • How the FTC can improve the quality, utility, and clarity of the disclosure requirements; and
  • How to minimize the burden of providing the required information to consumers.

According to the story, the FTC has estimated that the burden for complying with all the aforementioned rules eats up about 1.2 million hours of work-time each year.

“The TSR identifies specific disclosures for telesales calls and directs telemarketers to retain records regarding advertising, sales, and employees,” the story notes. “The records must be made available for the FTC's review if requested. According to the FTC's notice, these disclosure requirements give consumers ‘information necessary to make informed purchasing decisions,’ and the recordkeeping requirements may ‘yield information helpful to measuring and redressing consumer injury stemming from Rule violations.’”

Still, that’s a LOT of hours. It will be interesting to see what objections are raised, and what the outcome is. Stay tuned.

Edited by Stefania Viscusi