Opposition critics are demanding a federal regulator identify telemarketers thumbing their noses at do-not-call list rules instead of protecting them from public scorn.

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission refuses to name two telemarketers recently issued violation notices or even make public the amount of fines they face.

“We expected real vigilance on behalf of Canadian consumers, not shielding them (the telemarketers) under anonymity,” NDP critic MP Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre) said.

“Half the deterrence of a penalty is the bad publicity you get as being outed as a scofflaw. This do-not-call list is useless if it does not expose the wrongdoers to public outcry,” he said.

Martin said few things unite Canadians more than their loathing of telemarketers, especially those who refuse to respect the no-call list launched in September 2008.

Leonard Katz, CRTC’s vice-chairman of telecommunications, defended the commission’s decision, saying the “intent here is to promote compliance,” not punish the companies by publicizing their names right away.

Katz said the policy, which the CRTC came up with after consulting other jurisdictions, says the telemarketers won’t be named unless they refuse to pay the fine within 30 days, in which case they will be hauled up before a public hearing. torstar news service

Latest From ...