TPS - Telephone Preference Service - What is it?

TPS - Telephone Preference Service, does it work? The Facts are that for the majority it does not.

The Direct Marketing Association - Industry Lobbyists

The TPS is a number registry for consumers who wish to register their wish not to receive unsolicited sales and marketing calls, owned and operated by the DMA (Direct Marketing Association). The DMA is itself a lobbying consortium for the interests of "direct marketers". Direct marketers are organisations which market directly to you, more often than not through the phone. The DMA represents the interests of organisations which want to call you to make a profit. In other words, the main lobbying organisation for the direct marketing industry controls the government-sanctioned registry for stopping direct marketers. Is this beginning to sound fishy?

Many people complain that they still receive nuisance calls even after signing up for the Telephone Preference Service and some report nuisance calls increasing. The TPS acknowledge that this occurs on their website:

"We are aware that in recent months there has been a rise in the number of unsolicited calls being received by people registered on the TPS. These calls mainly from companies that deliberately ignore the law and either hide or disguise their identity.

Surely it is the companies which ignore the law which consumers want to be protected from the most? The TPS continues:

"They might withhold the number they are calling from or display a fake number. They sometimes use generic sounding names that cannot be used to accurately identify an organisation . Solar Panels UK, PPI Claims Ltd etc or they may refuse to give you any details at all. Understandably this makes contacting these companies or targeting them for enforcement extremely difficult or even impossible."

To it's credit, the TPS accepts that it's effectively useless in finding and punishing the worst offenders.

Telephone Preference Service - The Licensee Model

The TPS list is sold to 'licensees' (companies) at a full cost of £2640 including VAT per year. In theory companies should compare the TPS list to numbers they intend to contact and not contact those which appear. In reality, many unscrupulous companies gain access to the list and sell it on for their own profit, or choose to call the numbers under a different company name. This is the great flaw of the TPS and the corruption which springs from it which is rarely spoken of. In effect it puts those who sign up to the Telephone Preference Service at a greater risk of nuisance and scam calls. Is this not only a fundamental failure but a scandalous betrayal of the people it claims to protect? 

Simply put, we do not recommend signing up for the Telephone Preference Service in any circumstances.






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