Court Finds That System Is Not An ATDS Unless It Can Generate (As Opposed To Merely Dial) Numbers On A Random or Sequential Basis

Judge Baylson of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania recently granted Yahoo! summary judgment in a case challenging Yahoo’s automatic email to text alert system because it did not use an automatic telephone dialing system (“ATDS”) when it forwarded emails as text messages.  In doing so, he applied the plain meaning of the statutory definition of ATDS, rejected an FCC opinion that had purported to broaden it, and disagreed with Judge Curiel in the Southern District of California, who denied a similar motion by Yahoo! just weeks ago.  See Dominguez v. Yahoo!, Inc., No. 13-1887, slip op. (E.D. Pa. Mar. 20, 2014); Sherman v, Yahoo!, Inc., No. 13-0041, slip op. (S.D. Cal. Feb. 3, 2014).  The decision is important because it limits the definition of ATDS to those systems that can generate (as opposed to merely dial) a list of numbers on a “random or sequential” basis.

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