The content dissemination and coordination functions of the mobile are exemplified by customer-requested SMS services. An unlimited number of “speakers” can use the SMS channel to broadcast messages, as long as the mobile operators (or the common carriers, in regulatory terminology) allow it on a non-discriminatory manner.
In the telecom space, there is no regulation of “what goes through the pipes,” under the common-carrier principle. The fact that it is sent only to those customers who explicitly request the messages appears to reduce the justification for restriction by operators or by governments. However, government in countries without strong liberal democratic traditions there has been a tendency to apply restrictions to SMS as a whole, rather than just content.
The intention here is to examine the service in a country where it is offered and draw out the policy implications in Asia-Pacific context. LIRNEasia intends to explore freedom of expression issues pertaining to the dissemination of customer-requested mobile content in Pakistan.
This research was conducted by Hina Sarfaraz in 2009/10.
Citation for the above report should be done as: Author Last Name, First Name Initial, (2009), Report Name, Retrieved Date, URL of document on LIRNEasia website.