Groups Press FCC to Prohibit Blocking of Text Messages

Susan Hall

Consumer groups plan to file a petition Tuesday with the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to urge regulators to prohibit wireless carriers from blocking any text messages, even those sent through competing phone services, reports The Washington Post.


The groups, including Public Knowledge, Free Press, Media Access Project, Consumers Union and the New America Foundation, say carriers should not block messages sent by any company, nonprofit group or political campaign. The issue recently came up when Verizon Wireless initially refused to carry a subscription text-messaging service offered by abortion-rights group NARAL Pro-Choice America.


The article quotes the petition as saying:

Mobile carriers currently can and do arbitrarily decide what customers to serve and which speech to allow on text messages, refusing to serve those that they find controversial or that compete with the mobile carriers' services. This type of discrimination would be unthinkable and illegal in the world of voice communications, and it should be so in the world of text messaging as well.

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