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Messages worrying.

KUDOS to the radio station 104.2 Voice FM for doing such a good job entertaining the South Asian community. But one aspect of their operation worries me.

This is regarding the SMS messages they keep inviting from listeners for various purposes like replies, song requests, greetings etc (the numbers to send SMS are Batelco 91331 and Zain 77214).

My concerns are:

1) An SMS to these numbers costs 250 fils (almost 7 times the rate of a normal SMS (ie) 35 fils).

2) Considering that the majority of their listeners are from the Indian sub-continent, earning less than BD100 a month, it may be legal but is it ethical to make such huge profit margins of 600 per cent on each SMS?

If a person sends messages just four times in a month it is one dinar - which is quite a big sum for a person in this income bracket.

3) If income from such messages is one of the important commercial aims, then Voice FM has a moral obligation to announce frequently, at least once during each programme, the charges for sending an SMS to these numbers.

At least let the poor listener make an informed choice.

Ethical asian

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Publication:Gulf Daily News (Manama, Bahrain)
Date:Aug 17, 2009
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