A MyBroadband reader has report receiving an SMS from Vodacom with a “water saving” tip.
While it is not strange for Vodacom customers to receive SMSs from Vodacom – the reader is a Vodacom customer – and there is nothing new about needing to save water, there was an issue he observed.
The first was subjective, as he stated the “tip” was not very insightful. The SMS, posted below as a screenshot, stated:
Taking a quick shower instead of a bath saves water and also allows more people to have a share of the water.
The second issue, however, was more concrete – there was no option given for the user to reply “Stop” or to opt-out from receiving the message.
Water Research Commission
MyBroadband contacted Vodacom on the matter, which was quick to provide detailed feedback.
“The water saving tips are proposed and submitted by the Water Research Commission as part of its campaign to reduce water consumption in water-scarce areas. Our view is that the awareness will increase consciousness about water usage and drive down consumption,” said Vodacom.
“As Vodacom, this is one of the many initiatives where we use our technology to help alleviate societal and environmental challenges.”
Vodacom added that the SMS is targeted at a “limited number of customers residing/located in areas where there is a shortage of water”.
The operator also confirmed that as the message is not intended for marketing purposes, there is no opt-out reply option.
Customers can update their communication preferences according to the type of communication they wish to receive by calling customer care and updating their customer permissions and preferences, however, and request not to receive service related messaging, said Vodacom.
“It is targeted at customers that are located in water-scarce areas, with the aim of supporting the Water Research Commission in its efforts to increase awareness around water saving.”