WASPA Website a Welcome Resource for Mobile Users
The South African Wireless Application Service Providers’ Association’s (WASPA) interactive website has been described by WASPA’s General Manager, Ilonka Badenhorst, as “a very useful resource available to mobile consumers receiving or interacting with mobile value added services”.
Badenhorst explains that any one of the country’s estimated 35 million cellular users can surf to the site at www.waspa.org.za to access information about mobile value added services, the rules and regulations that govern this industry and to review their options in the event that they have a query or complaint regarding any service offered by a member of the association.
While the vast majority of WASPA members provide mobile users with access to entertaining and desirable mobile content and applications, these products and services must be provided within a very strictly regulated framework. “We have therefore made it easy for consumers to identify WASPA members who have overstepped the bounds of our Code of Conduct,” said Badenhorst.
Since its incorporation, more than a decade ago, its aim has been to create confidence in the local mobile content and applications industry, WASPA has notched up important victories for the cellular consumer. Mobile users are now required to twice confirm their interest in receiving mobile content through the world-leading double opt-in system implemented by WASPs and the mobile networks. WASPA’s Code of Conduct has also been annually updated, creating a framework that outlines how responsible and transparent WASPA members are expected to conduct their business.
Summarising the features of the website, Badenhorst explained that consumers could visit various areas of the website to report SMS scams and spam, report unwanted billing, lodge a complaint and contact WASPA.
“WASPA is a self-regulatory, membership-based industry body. Consumers with complaints or queries involving any of WASPA’s members are welcome to lodge them via the website.
“It is important to remember that some consumer complaints would involve entities, usually overseas-based, that are not WASPA members and therefore not accountable to the WASPA Code of Conduct, nor to South African legislation,” said Badenhorst.
Finally, the WASPA website also contains useful links to information for parents concerned about their child’s access to content services on the mobile networks. These include mobile network parental control pages with step-by-step instructions on how to limit access to inappropriate content by minors.