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The FTC brings $7.7 million in DNC list violations against six major companies

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission announced that it initiated a crackdown on companies who disregard names on the Federal Do Not Call (DNC) list and actions resulting from the crackdown have been brought against six companies by the U.S. Department of Justice.

These actions have resulted in six settlements with the FTC with the sum total being $7.7 million in civil penalties. The largest settlement was from Craftmatic, the adjustable bed company, after it used a contest to capture phone numbers of entrants. Consumers who entered the contest weren’t told sales calls would be made to the numbers they provided to enter the contest.

Craftmatic allegedly placed tens of thousands of calls to the numbers collected in the contest and complaints alleged the company made millions of abandoned calls to consumers. An abandoned call is when a call is placed to a consumer and the consumer isn't connected to a live representative within two seconds.

Craftmatic has agreed to pay a $4.4 million USD civil penalty to settle the complaint, which is the second largest penalty ever for DNC violations. Alarm company ADT also settled with the FTC for calling numbers on the DNC list for $2 million. Two of its authorized dealers, Alarm King and Direct Security also settled for $20,000 and $25,000 respectively for DNC violations.

Ameriquest Mortgage settled similar allegations for $1 million. Guardian Communications was hit with the largest penalty totaling $7.8 million, but settled with the FTC for only $150,000 because the company couldn’t pay the full amount of the fine. The remainder of the $7.8 million is suspended based on the company's inability to pay.

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By hr824 on 11/9/2007 4:24:12 PM , Rating: 3
The next time I get a speeding ticket I will site the Gardian case and tell the judge that I can't pay $120.00 but can only afford $2.00.....How do you think I'll make out?

RE: Gardian
By HighWing on 11/9/2007 5:15:41 PM , Rating: 1
Seriously thats exactly what I was thinking. If a citizen can't pay a fine, you either get community service or thrown in jail.

I think something similar should be done with a company too. I mean just suspending the rest is basically just slapping them on the hand and saying don't do it again. At the least I hope some sort of restrictions were put on the suspended sum like if they ever get fined again, they have to not only pay the new fine, but also pay the previously suspended amount even it it makes them go bankrupt. Hell the govt does it in other ways to other companies.

RE: Gardian
By joex444 on 11/9/2007 7:35:22 PM , Rating: 2
Especially since the feds decided to make corporations a "legal entity" -- it makes them equal to people, yet they are clearly run by people with vast sums of money to prevent losses in court.

Basically, all of Gardin's next $7.65 million in profit should go to this penalty. Oddly, corporations with huge incomes (and I don't know if Gardin is huge or not), have some really crafty accountants and tax preparers. Did you know that most of the Fortune 500 companies don't pay taxes? They can make hundreds of millions in income and offset it with non-tangible costs, such as depreciation, and end up with a tangible net profit, yet claim a loss and the government can't overturn that on audit.

It's kind of disgusting. Maybe capitalism is the best thing we have yet, but it still is all wrong. Communism certainly has its downsides, but you could never say that in communist USSR that the factory is worth more than Joe factory worker, but they'd still both be screwed.

RE: Gardian
By Martin Blank on 11/10/2007 12:54:25 AM , Rating: 2
During much of the USSR's existence, the workers were considered expendable, while the infrastructure -- the factories, in your example -- were valuable. This is why so many areas are badly polluted, the lifespan was short (though it's improved in the last 20 years), and Soviet battle tactics long used techniques that included nearly-suicidal infantry rushes intended to distract the enemy from the artillery and armor.

RE: Gardian
By jajig on 11/10/2007 10:19:16 AM , Rating: 2
LOL like in CoD.

You follow man with gun. When he get's shot you pick up gun.

something like that anyway

RE: Gardian
By boredg on 11/11/2007 5:01:23 PM , Rating: 2
i think the best telemarketing experience ive ever had is when i told the guy calling me to go ***k himself. and he replied:
"Id love to sir, but im not on break yet." :)

"I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen

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