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U.S. FCC to examine text-message spam

Thursday, 25 Oct 2012 | 9:01 PM ET

WASHINGTON, Oct 25 (Reuters) - The U.S. Federal Communications Commission said this week it is accepting comments on a petition to keep spam off cellphones by having Internet-to-phone text messaging declared a type of illegal auto-dialing.

Revolution Messaging LLC of Washington, which helps nonprofits with mobile telecommunications, filed the petition in January seeking a ruling about whether federal laws cover technologies for the storage and automatic dialing of wireless phone numbers.

Federal regulations bar noncommercial, unsolicited text messages to cellphones without the phone user's consent.

In its petition, Revolution said it is seeking the ruling because it was likely that millions of cellphone users would be billed for text messages during the 2012 election season.

Revolution's chief executive, Scott Goodstein, headed President Barack Obama's social networking and mobile platforms in the 2008 campaign.

The Internet-to-phone technology, which collects cellphone numbers without consent and messages them via email addresses, is not covered under the Technology Consumer Protection Act.

The FCC said on Tuesday it was accepting comments on Revolution's request through Nov. 23.

(Reporting by Ian Simpson; editing by Philip Barbara)