what counts as a message?
Answered

I recieved a unsolicited message today with a tinyurl link, so I'm sure it was spam. i have not given out my cell # but to a very few people so this was probably a random number spam/attack.

This has made me wonder what counts as a message. Is it what is sent, what is received, or both?

I would like to keep messaging on to receive security messages for gmail ect. but if spam messages get out of hand, I don't really want to pay for a bunch of spam messages.

Any Ideas?

 

Sincerely,

Steve

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11 comments
  • I have also been receiving similar messages I believe messages are charged for both sent and received messages. If I check my detailed message I can see number 877465 and 32453 spam counting towards my used text messages.

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  • One thing I did like about Verizon was I could block these non-phone number premium texts, yet allow normal text messages.  The Ting dashboard just has an all or nothing switch for text messaging.  Any chance of adding something like this on Ting?

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  • Michael I'm not sure what you mean by "non-phone number premium texts". Can you clarify?

    We count any text message sent or received as part of your monthly usage.

    We don't really have the ability to filter particular messages or calls (i.e. run whitelists and blacklist) because we don't run the network. There is nothing between you can the message sender that checks in with Ting to see if it's okay, so we're kind of stuck on that front, even though it would be nice to offer.

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  • Michael thank you for the response, is this something Ting is thinking about fixing in the future? I know sprint has a blocking feature for premium text (text numbers that are not real cell numbers). I also believe they have whitelists and blacklist. This would be really helpful, as of today 27 days into my bill I have received over 10 unsolicited texts to my ting number.

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  • I don't think we'll be able to do much towards offering blacklist and whitelist options. Sorry.

    I'm still curious about "Premium text" messages. I'm not sure how the network would distinguish between a spam message vs. non-spam based on the "wrapper" for the message vs the content of the message or the account's history of sending spam.

    If you have examples you'd care to share off-list you can do so by sending to ken at ting dot com.

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  • From Ting's help page: 

    To block unwanted incoming text messages, send a message to the number '9999' with the message 'block' followed by the* short code or phone number *of the sender you wish to block.

    For example, to block incoming text messages from 416-999-2430, the message would read: "block 4169992430".

    After the block was successful, the system will reply to let you know the number has been blocked.

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  • Just found that when I view a message, in the options of my phone (Sanyo Vero) there's a "Block This Sender" command. I hope that if enough of us block a number, that the phone system will consider that number a bad actor and take appropriate measures.

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  • Ken: By premium text message, I mean those 5 digit texts that you can use to donate money or otherwise get charged for something, and sometimes just by reading a text, I've been charged. This hasn't happened to me yet at Ting, and maybe it can't, but it has for me in the past with other services.

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  • OK, for clarity: what I meant was that you can't block messages through the Ting Dashboard. Your phone can block if it supports such functionality (they generally do).

    We don't allow Premium Messages on Ting. We thought about it but didn't find enough legitimate use cases and TONS of problems with people using them incorrectly so we decided not to build them in to the service.

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  • Tom thanks for the info, it sound like it would be better to block a number using your method. Since if you block it on the phone when you change phones you may get them again. Also I believe blocking them on the phone stops them from you seeing them but they will still come in. So it may still get counted as a received txt.

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