Friday, November 16, 2012

Papa John's Spam Blast: Oops

"Papa John's faces $250 million spam lawsuit"
Olivia Smith, CNN Money (November 13, 2012)

"Popular U.S. pizza chain Papa John's faces a $250 million class-action lawsuit for blasting customers with illegal text messages.

"The plaintiffs allege that Papa John's (PZZA) franchises sent customers a total of 500,000 unwanted messages in early 2010. The spam texts offered deals for pizza, and some customers complained they were getting 15 or 16 texts in a row, even during the middle of the night, according Donald Heyrich, an attorney representing the class.

" 'After I ordered from Papa John's, my telephone started beeping with text messages advertising pizza specials,' Erin Chutich, one of the plaintiffs, said in a statement. 'Papa John's never asked permission to send me text message advertisements.'

"The pizza franchises sent the text blasts through a mass text messaging service called OnTime4U, which is also a defendant in the case. When Papa John's was first sued in April 2010, the franchises allegedly ended their involvement with OnTime4U's text program...."

Somehow, somewhere, someone got the idea that pestering customers - in the middle of the night - was a good idea.

Or maybe it was a programming glitch.

The CNN Money article says that the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 requires wannabe spammers to wait until folks opt in to a text messaging spamfest.

Papa John's, OnTime4U, and probably a lot of other outfits, will be contributing to the welfare of lawyers for quite a while, in the Lemming's opinion.

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