Several consumer organizations are launching a petition on Monday on the subject of telephone canvassing. They call on the public authorities to ban this practice, which is described as “intrusive” and “unwanted by consumers”.
“The resurgence of telephone canvassing […] demands firm action from the public authorities to put an end to toxic practices “, denounce in a joint press release Adicic, Afoc, ALLDC, CSF, Cnafal, CLCV, Rural Families, UFC-Que Choisir and UNAF.
This initiative comes at a time when the National Assembly is preparing to discuss a bill on January 30 on this issue. “However, as it stands, the text suffers cruelly from ambition and even risks worsening the situation, hence our call for the mobilization of consumers, the first victims of real commercial harassment”, alarm the associations . “The sectors that use canvassing the most are those that concentrate consumer disputes with amounts that can be very significant,” they denounce. These associations aim to reach 50,000 signatures for the petition.
The current system is insufficient
In France, everyone can be solicited, unless they have entered their number in the Bloctel file, a service set up in mid-2016 which makes it possible to no longer be disturbed by unwanted calls. 3.7 million consumers and 700 companies had subscribed to the device in 2018. Telephone canvassing was however “not limited by Bloctel. Four years after its implementation, the system is proving ineffective due to far too extensive exemptions and insufficiently dissuasive sanctions ”, continue the associations.
With regard to the text to be discussed soon in the Assembly, it “endorses the logic of the right to object (Opt-out) de Bloctel, whose ineffectiveness is notoriously noted by consumers ”, underline the associations. The “opt-out” is when the recipient of an advertisement has not objected: if he did not say “no”, it is “yes”, recalls on his website the National Commission for Data Protection (Cnil).
But in addition, the text “widens the possibilities of derogation from the prohibition of telephone canvassing for people registered on Bloctel”, still tan associations. The signatories call on parliamentarians to “purely and simply ban this practice” of doorstep selling.