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WASPA in the News (2004-2007)

:: 2007 ::

:: 2006 ::

  • No more phone spam, says mobile industry (Blog)
    Leaders in the South African mobile services arena have signed a mobile service code of conduct designed to protect consumers from phone spam and hidden charges.
  • Regulating the cellular push (Mail and Guardian)
    Judging by the ads, the African National Congress has high hopes of using consumer-paid SMSs to win extra votes in the coming poll. The party's cellular push is tiny compared to the porn vendors selling content to cellphones, but indicative of the growing jostle in the mobile publishing market.
  • South African NLB to investigate illegal SMS competitions (IOL)
    The National Lottery Board (NLB) has launched an investigation into illegal lotteries that require entrants to use their cellphones and charge them more than the cost of a normal SMS.
  • Premium rated SMS in South Africa: the best way to design a competition (SMSWarehouse)
    Recently, we reported that the National lotteries board intend to launch an investigation into illegal SMS competitions. This week we will elaborate a bit on premium rated SMS competitions in South Africa and how to go about the design of an acceptable competition, seeing that I am getting phone calls from interested parties wanting us to arrange such promotions/competitions.
  • WASPA's advertising rules show industry compliance (ICTWorld)
    The Wireless Application Service Providers' Association (WASPA) has followed its recent MAR introduction of the WASPA Code of Conduct in September last year, with the introduction of the WASPA Advertising Rules.
  • Mobile operators in anti mobile spam initiative (Cellular.co.za)
    The GSM Association (GSMA) has brought together fifteen mobile phone operators to sign a code of practice committing them to work together to minimise spam sent via text and picture messages.
  • WASPA's advertising rules show industry compliance (ICTWorld)
    The Wireless Application Service Providers' Association (WASPA) has followed its recent MAR introduction of the WASPA Code of Conduct in September last year, with the introduction of the WASPA Advertising Rules.
  • South African Bugging Law Approved (Cellular.co.za)
    The South African cabinet approved draft legislation regulating the tapping of telephones and intercepting of e-mails. Outstanding matters had been settled with cellphone companies, and the Bill would be submitted to Parliament for processing.
  • Xcite Mobile hit by double ruling from the ASASA (ICTWorld)
    Xcite Mobile has been hit by a double ruling by the Advertising Standards Authority of SA (ASASA) for misleading subscription advertising.
    Two independent complaints were filed with the ASASA, by Exactmobile and a complainant by the name of John Skliros.
  • What are you really downloading? (Bizcommunity)
    Confusion between once-off mobile content downloads and subscription services is resulting in South African consumers inadvertently signing up for subscription services, where they receive ongoing mobile content and are billed continuously, as opposed to once-off, as with premium rate SMS. Most do not know how to stop a subscription service or know what recourse is available to them for lodging complaints against a subscription service, says Dr Pieter Streicher, MD of BulkSMS.com.
  • Code Is The Consumer’s Ally (Financial Mail) [Mybroadband.co.za]
    Industry body the Wireless Application Service Providers’ Association (Waspa), has developed a code of conduct in an effort to minimise abusive trade practices. Network operators insist that content providers obey the code.
  • Makers of Racist Ring Tone 'Guilty of Hate Speech' (Business Day / Allafrica.com)
    The originators of a racist cellphone ring tone in Afrikaans that encourages violence against blacks will be prosecuted for distributing hate speech, says Shaun Byneveldt, the speaker of the Western Cape provincial parliament -- but it may be difficult to trace them.
  • China text-messages typhoon warnings (Globe and Mail)
    With Typhoon Kaemi roaring toward Jinjiang in China's crowded southeast, Dr. Yang was sealing his apartment windows against the pounding rain when his cellphone buzzed to life.
    "Typhoon forecast to make land this evening near Jinjiang," said the message, which was sent to millions of mobile phones in the coastal city and surrounding Fujian province. "Please attend to preparations.
  • Texting helps teens' grammar (Globe and Mail)
    Worried about your teenagers ruining their grasp of the English language by using instant messaging? Rest easy: New research shows it actually gives them a strong command of grammar.
  • Hit back at Spammers (mybroadband.co.za)
    According to Dominic Cull, an associate at Niccifeguson Inc and an adjudicator for WASPA, recommended that people who feel there are being bombarded by spam go to the Wireless Applications Service Providers' Association for help.
  • WASPA Complaints procedure (Junkmail)
    Junkmail mirror of WASPA complaints procedure
  • More For Less With Mobile Subscriptions (Mail and Guardian)
    Some mobile content ads loudly trumpet "no subscriptions, no hidden costs". Some in turn proudly claim "get more value by subscribing now!" Add to this reports of consumers getting ripped off by services (the most infamous being the Crazy Frog "but I didn't know I was being subscribed" debacle in the UK and US), and you end up with some very confused consumers. Is a subscription service good or bad?

:: 2005 ::

  • SA Cellular Code (Clickatell)
    This Code of Practice has been developed by Vodacom (Pty) Ltd, MTN (Pty) Ltd and Cell C (Pty) Ltd (collectively referred to as the mobile operators) for use in the South African market.
  • South African Mobile Regulator ICASA Wants Shorter Mobile Phone Contracts (Cellular.co.za)
    The Independent Communications Authority of SA (ICASA) would like to see shorter cellphone contract in a report entitled “Enquiry into Handset Subsidies Findings and Conclusions”
  • WASPA Implements New Advertising Rules For WASPs on Mobile Content
    The South African Wireless Application Service Providers' Association (WASPA) has followed their recent successful introduction of the WASPA Code of Conduct in September last year, with the introduction of the WASPA Advertising Rules.
  • 2bn cellphone users worldwide (Fin24)
    The chief executive of wireless equipment maker LM Ericsson said on Tuesday the world will "very soon" see 2 billion cellphone users.
  • No blacklisting updates (Fin24)
    Success figures of a much-heralded plan to curb cellphone theft by blacklisting stolen ones remains a mystery - more than a month after the scheme was announced.
  • Cellphone banking takes shape (Fin24)
    Almost half of around 2 000 people with bank accounts polled during a mobility research project said cellphone banking is safe and almost two thirds regard it as convenient, suggesting powerful growth in this area in the coming years, research house World Wide Worx said.
  • Cellphone bliss in South Africa (Fin24)
    It's official: South African men are bigger talkers than women when it comes to cellphones in their cars.
  • Digital music via your cellphone (Fin24)
    Swedish telecommunications giant Ericsson and online music-swapping pioneer Napster announced a partnership to offer a new digital music service for mobile operators.
  • Mobile service providers unite under common code of conduct (Clickatell)
    The South African Wireless Application Service Providers Association (WASPA) joined forces on Friday 30 June 2005 to protect the consumer, when many of the South African mobile industry players signed the first mobile services Code of Conduct. The code, which is the first industry code in South Africa to deal directly with preventing spam, will also cover elements such as subscription services, mobile content services, including adult content services, and paying for mobile content on the handset.
  • No more phone spam, says mobile industry (ITWeb)
    Leaders in the South African mobile services arena have signed a mobile service code of conduct designed to protect consumers from phone spam and hidden charges.
  • SMS ´top non-voice money-maker´ (ITWeb)
    SMS has emerged as the telecoms world's top non-voice revenue generator, representing approximately 90% of non-voice revenue worldwide, according to a new worldwide study of mobile messaging markets by UK-based Portio Research.
  • ICANN Approves Mobile Phone Domain (Newsfactor)
    Following pressure by mobile phone players, including Microsoft, a new Internet domain was approved for Web sites designed for wireless phones. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) has greenlighted the ".mobi" suffix.
  • 'Free' ringtones cost Europe dear (BBC)
    A common loophole on ringtone websites means many people are downloading popular tunes without paying a penny, research shows.
  • Are Ringtones Being 'Shoplifted'? (Internet News)
    Alleged "security" holes in US and European digital content sites may potentially result in over $301 million worth of ringtones being "shoplifted" by 2006.
  • ASA rules against Jippii ad (ITWeb)
    The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has ruled that an advert for iTouch Jippii ringtones is misleading and should be withdrawn
  • Virus strikes cellphones (News24)
    Although viruses for cellphones existed only in laboratories until recently, the Comwarrior virus has found its way to cellphones worldwide, including in South Africa.
  • Cellphone users caught by the fine print (Mail and Guardian)
    Cellular subscription services are fast becoming a headache for South African cellphone users, says Davin Mole, CEO of the Exact Mobile group. Advertisement promoting subscriptions services are misleading and once subscribed, Mole says, it can sometimes be difficult for users to find out which service they are subscribed to, or how to unsubscribe.
  • Hackers target net call systems (BBC)
    Malicious hackers are turning their attention to the technology behind net phone calls, says a report.
  • WASPs keep content providers in line (ITWeb)
    Last week the Wireless Application Service Providers Association (WASPA) sanctioned Integrat on a number of counts, including misleading advertising of subscription services by content provider Peach Mobile. Integrat provides the connectivity for Peach.
  • WASPA cracks down on SMS porn (ITWeb)
    The Wireless Application Service Providers Association (WASPA) is taking a firm stance to regulate SA's R50 million adult mobile content industry, but the organisation is adamant it is not engaging in censorship.
  • Interception Act now in effect (ITWeb)
    Legislation dealing with the interception of communications is now in effect after being published in the Government Gazette with the date of operation set at 30 September.
  • Number portability gets green light (ITWeb)
    The long-awaited regulations regarding number portability have been promulgated and published in the Government Gazette. Communications minister Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri approved the regulations in terms of section 96 of the Telecommunications Act.
  • Nokia to inoculate phones with antivirus (CNet)
    Nokia has entered a pact with Symantec to help secure its mobile phones from viruses that target certain kinds of handsets.
  • Exactmobile: WASPA ruling ineffective (iWeek)
    The first ruling by the WASPA adjudicator is provoking mixed reaction.
  • Put the kettle on... by SMS (IOL)
    Scientists have invented a kettle that can be turned on by text message.
    You can turn it on without getting off the couch or on the way home from work by texting the words "switch on".
  • Fear of SMS hacker attacks "unfounded" (Business Day / Mybroadband.co.za)
    New research suggests that hackers could exploit the vulnerabilities in SMS technology to bring down the networks, but the CEO of Clickatell, one of the world’s largest mobile messaging companies, argues that it is not yet possible.
  • Research shows text a popular way of ending romance (INet-Bridge / Mybroadband.co.za)
    Breaking up is supposed to be hard to do, but young Australian couples have found an easy solution - send a text message and move on.
  • Cellphone war at fever pitch (Sunday Times / Mybroadband.co.za
    The ongoing war between the cellphone operators has become something of a pitched battle lately, as each of the three operators try to outdo each other in the continued fight for more market share.
  • Place bets by SMS (ITWeb)
    TAB, the betting division of Phumelela Gaming and Leisure, has introduced a GPRS betting application that will allow punters to place bets either via enabled cellphones or pocket PCs from any location with GSM cell coverage.
  • Cellphone pornography (Lowvelder Online)
    What do pornography and primary schoolchildren have in common? The answer seems to be cellphones.
  • WASPA Code Of Conduct (SABC Mobile)
    WASPA is an independent, non-profit organisation representing the interests of organisations providing mobile application services in South Africa. The Association aims to provide a neutral forum for members to address issues of common interest and interact with industry stakeholders, network operators and government bodies. WASPA aims to ensure that end-users receive world-class services and industry participants earn a fair return on their investments. The association was founded in August 2004.
  • Andre du Toit elected to Network Operators Liaison Committee of the WASP Association (Pattern Matched)
    The Wireless Application Service Providers Association (WASPA) held its Annual General Meeting on the 7th of December 2005 at the Escom Convention Center in Midrand. New members were elected to serve on the Management Committee (Mancom), Network Operators Liaison Committee (Netcom) and the Code of Conduct Committee (Codecom).

:: 2004 ::

  • New UK Regulationsfor opting out of PSMS (Cellular.co.za)
    A scheme to make it easier for consumers to stop Premium Rate SMS services they no longer want is being phased in by content owners and operators in the UK.
  • PMT: a founding member of WASPA (Pattern Matched)
    Pattern Matched Technologies attends the formation of the industry body known as "WASPA" (Wireless Application Service Provider Association) at Cell C and joins the association as a founding member.
  • US Sets New Rules for stopping spam on mobile phones (Cellular.co.za)
    The USA's Mobile Marketing Association has announced the formation of an anti-spam committee, the second phase in its aggressive program to insure that wireless content applications remain spam-free.
  • Dodgy SMS services feel WASPA's sting (ITWeb)
    The Wireless Application Service Providers Association (WASPA) has been established by industry players, with seed money from the three cellular operators, and is an organisation aimed at providing protection to service providers.
  • Dodgy SMS services feel WASPA's sting (Blog)
    Bretton posted an email earlier refering to the following Dodgy SMS services feel WASPA's sting article on ITWeb.
  • SA Interception Regulations Set For Implementation (Cellular.co.za)
    The South African government and its intelligence agencies are putting finishing touches to a raft of interception regulations that will oblige all mobile and fixed operators and ISPs to provide real-time monitoring of all voice and data telecommunications services offered in the country, including all SMS, WAP, MMS, USSD and GPRS traffic, says Leon Perlman.
  • WASPA born today (ITWeb)
    The wireless application industry is marking its coming of age with the inaugural meeting of the industry association today and preparation for the first awards catering for the industry.
  • ICSTIS to get greater powers to tackle unscrupulous firms (Cellular.co.za)
    UK Premium rate services regulator ICSTIS is to get greater powers to help it tackle those in the industry who deliberately set out to rip off consumers.
  • Japan Proposes Ban On Prepaid Mobile Phones (Cellular.co.za)
    Japan's Liberal Democratic Party plans to ban prepaid cell phones which it says are used mainly by criminals. Reports indicate that Vodafone KK, the Japanese unit of the British mobile giant Vodafone Group PLC with 1.5 prepaid users will be most hurt by the ban.
    Vodafone says however it is trying to confirm the identities of customers to combat scams.
  • Dutch Regulator OPTA Fines SMS spammers (Cellular.co.za)
    Opta, the Dutch telecoms regulator has imposed the first fines for spam with the highest fine EURO 42.500.
    Opta was established on the basis of complaints which have been lodged on the Internet site www.spamklacht.nl
  • Israeli Ministry to Restrict Porn on Mobile Phones (Cellular.co.za)
    Israel's Communications Ministry said Sunday it amended licenses for mobile phone operators to restrict access to pornographic services following complaints that too many children were exposed to erotic material.
  • Watchdog to Blow Whistle On Cell-Phone Scams (AllAfrica.com, subscription required) (Originally Sunday Times (Johannesburg))