By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Cell-phone spam

Just got my first spam text message via cell phone — a Viagra come-on. What gives? Why haven’t I gotten any of these until now? What can I do?

Discover more from Media Nation

Subscribe to get the latest posts to your email.


Those WBZ Radio cuts


Nat Hentoff signs off, vows not to retire


  1. Robin Edgar

    “a Viagara come-on”Pun intended? 😉

  2. Robin Edgar

    That’s weird. . . I cut and pasted “a Viagra come-on”. I did not retype it. How did Viagra automatically expand to become Viagara? BTW This is not the first time that this sort of thing has happened.

  3. Dan Kennedy

    Robin: Actually, you cut and pasted “a Viagara come-on,” because I initially misspelled it. I caught it and revised the item before you noticed.

  4. Robin Edgar

    OK I think I have it. Dan originally typed Viagara, I copied it and pasted it while the typo/spelling error was still there but Dan corrected the error between 6:32 and 6:35. Not *that* weird after all.

  5. Robin Edgar

    As you can see I sort of figured that out for myself while you were writing your comment Dan. 🙂

  6. Robin Edgar

    I noticed that the UUpdates U*U blog aggregator preserved the original typo.

  7. Robin Edgar

    So how about if you answer my original question Dan. 🙂

  8. bob gardner

    would it work to add your number to the do not call list? Is that list open to cell phones? Would it cause more problems than it solves? I don’t know, but it’s worth investigating.

  9. Dan Kennedy

    Robin: Aggregators run behind, anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. It will update, though you may have to hit “reload.”

  10. LFNeilson

    What can you do? Get ready for a ton of bad jokes. I’ve already thought of three, but I’ll spare you.zzzzzzz

  11. Jess

    Most cell phone companies allow you to put a filter on text messages, though they won’t turn them off completely. I have T Mobile, and get lots of wrong number texts in addition to spam, but since putting in a filter haven’t gotten many at all.

  12. Robin Edgar

    It’s updated now Dan but I still don’t know if the pun was intended. Can I interest you in some non-cell-phone SPAM? I have posted a “less than diplomatic” rough draft of my open letter to UUA President Bill Sinkford calling upon him to live up to his own religious rhetoric and “choose love” for any and all victims of all forms of U*U clergy misconduct, sexual misconduct and otherwise. I am interested in suggestions for saying pretty much the same thing somewhat more diplomatically but not *too* diplomatically. U*Us and even non-U*Us are invited to make suggestions for improvements by commenting on the blog post itself or sending me a private and confidential email at

  13. Neil

    Also if you don’t have unlimited text messaging then you pay for inbound messages don’t you. Then you’re paying for advertising. A capitalist wet dream. Sounds like filter time.

  14. Peter Porcupine

    DK – below is a link to the Do Not Call (DNC) info at Consumer Affairs - will note that junk and spam email are specifically excluded from DNC, so I don't think you can use the list to exclude texts as they are a form of email.This is another example of our Luddite Legislators being unable to keep up with technology, which is odd in that many more of them utilize these services than even ten years ago.The deadline for filing legislation is Jan. 14, and as you know any citizen of MA can file a bill for the upcoming Session. Waddaya say, Dan, wanna go for it? :~)

  15. Dan Hamilton & Chris Macort

    If your carrier is AT&T they have a very effective spam filter for TXT messages.-dan

  16. Sam Scott

    Over here in Israel, we frequently get regular advertisements from our cell phone companies on our phones. I would not be surprised if this makes it way there soon.

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén