So someone’s finally doing something about the TRAI’s restrictive SMS caps: The Delhi High Court has issued notices to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) and the central government questioning TRAI’s cap of 200 SMSes per day per SIM, after a petition challenging the order was filed by Anil Kumar, secretary of an NGO, Telecom Watchdog, reports The Economic Times. The petition also alleged that the checks and measures under the Telecom Commercial Communications Customer Preference Regulations, 2010, were already enough to tackle the menace of unsolicited SMS’s and the SMS cap has been imposed in a non-transparent manner without any prior consultation with the stakeholders.

The SMS spam regulations finally saw the light of the day on September 27, 2011, following which the regulator capped the outgoing SMS at 100 SMS’s per day per SIM, which was subsequently extended to allow 200 SMS per day per SIM and an additional charge of 5 paise was levied on promotional SMS.

We have always said that the regulator’s decision to limit the number of peer to peer SMSs was not required. We do not understand why the TRAI feels that the move will limit spam, when in fact spammers have discovered other alternatives including using servers and numbers located outside India for the same purpose. It only ended up affecting the end-consumer who uses SMS as a means of communication. Also, other counter measures such as limiting bulk SMS special tariffs were sufficient to discourage non-registered spammers.

Nikhil adds: The problem is as much with the SMS limit, which effectively limits individual communication – for example, can you imagine a limit on the number of calls you make in a day – as it is with the arbitrariness with which the policy was changed and then rolled back. What that really does is that it makes businesses lose confidence in the regulator and the sector, because – like we found out in one case – entire businesses can be wiped out with one policy change. The SMS policy still isn’t right, and the TRAI is really trying to address the wrong part of the value chain – the buyer. It’s an issue of enforcement, and they need to take telecom operators to task, because in the current scheme of things, they benefit as the seller (of SMS), but have no responsibility, in terms of the actions of whom they sell it to.

Complete Coverage of TRAI’s SMS Spam Regulation:
– Updated: India’s SMS Spam Regulations To Be Applicable On 27th September 2011
– What Mobile Marketing & SMS Co’s Think Of TRAI’s SMS Spam Regulations
– The Impossibility Of TRAI’s SMS Spam Regulations – Anonymous
– TRAI Relaxes 100 SMS Per Day Restriction For E-Tickets, Social Networks, Directories, DTH & More
– Public List: What Doesn’t Work Post TRAI’s SMS Spam Guidelines
– How TRAI’s SMS Guidelines Are Killing My Startup – Dayson Pais, Textme
– Phone.cc: How Netcore’s Is Trying To Provide A Workaround For TRAI SMS Spam Regulations
– Are TRAI’s SMS Spam Guidelines Really Working?
– SMS Spam: How To Get Your Co Whitelisted With TRAI For 100+ SMS Per Day
– TRAI’s SMS License Raj: Expands Telemarketer Definition To Include E-commerce, Brokers, Insurance & More
– TRAI Imposes Additional Charge Of 5 Paise On Promotional SMS
TRAI Extends Daily SMS Limit To 200; Why Not Scrap It?