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Verizon Decides To Allow Abortion Rights Texting

Exercising the prerogative to change its mind, Verizon Wireless has decided it will allow an abortion rights group to use its network to send text messages to supporters. The company calls the earlier rejection "an incorrect interpretation of a dusty internal policy" that "was designed to ward against communications such as anonymous hate messaging and adult materials sent to children."

The policy had been developed "before text messaging protections such as spam filters adequately protected customers from unwanted messages." But the program requested by Naral would have sent messages only to people who had asked to receive them.

Last week, Verizon rejected a request from the abortion rights group, Naral Pro-Choice America, for a five-digit "short code." Such codes allow people interested in hearing from businesses, politicians and advocacy groups to sign up to receive text messages. Verizon is one of the two largest mobile carriers. The other leading carriers had accepted Naral's request for the code.

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