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FTC to hold meeting on mobile commerce

August 18, 2009

apex-buildingThe Federal Trade Commission will hold a Town Hall meeting to discuss the evolving mobile commerce marketplace and its effect on consumer protection policy.

The two-day meeting, titled “Beyond Voice: Mapping the Mobile Marketplace,” is a sequel to the November FTC forum, “Protecting Consumers in the Next Tech-Ade.” Free and open to the public, the event will be held May 6-7 at the FTC Conference Center in Washington.

“Mobile marketing involves cutting-edge consumer protection issues,” said Lisa Hone, assistant director in the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, Washington. “We look forward to hearing from the industry and consumer advocates and consumers about the experiences they’re having and what we can expect in the future.”

The FTC Town Hall meeting has several topics on the agenda. They include the use of mobile messaging services as instruments of mobile commerce; consumers’ ability to control mobile applications; and the adaptation of advertising to mobile devices, including the challenges presented by small screen disclosures.

Also up for discussion are mobile commerce practices targeting children and teens; industry best practices in preventing fraud, disclosing costs and resolving billing disputes; evolving security threats and solutions; and next-generation products and services.

The FTC is inviting requests for panelists and other topics for discussion for the Town Hall meeting. Requests should be emailed to by Feb. 27. Each request should include a statement detailing the submitting party’s expertise on the issues to be discussed at the meeting, along with complete contact information.

Panelists will be selected based on their expertise and the need to represent a range of views, the FTC said. Those selected will be informed by March 26.

Also, the FTC is inviting written comments or original research on mobile commerce through March 17. The comments should refer to “Beyond Voice — Comment, Project No. P074403.” The form is available on

“We hope to receive lots of suggestions for speakers, topics, areas that need further exploration in the emerging world of mobile commerce,” Ms. Hone said.

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Mickey Alam Khan is editor in chief of Mobile Commerce Daily, Mobile Marketer and Luxury Daily. Reach him at

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