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Sprint Opts Out of Wireless Directory Service

Sprint will not offer a wireless directory assistance (WDA), or wireless 411 service in 2005 as it previously had planned, a spokesperson said Friday.

A spokesperson told Mobile Pipeline that the legislative environment made it too difficult to participate in the wireless directory. Sprint and a number of other operators such as Cingular and T-Mobile, had said they would work together to provide the service.

"Misinformation about carriers' plans for a wireless directory has led to recent state legislative activity placing unnecessary requirements on how such a service could be offered," Sprint Scott Stoffel said. "This legislation imposes unnecessary operational and financial burdens on carriers and complicates what was intended to be a value-added, opt-in service for customers."

Some privacy advocates were concerned that the directory would compromise the privacy of wireless users, although the operators insisted that the service would only be offered to users who opted in and that their names would not be shared.

Stoffel particularly pointed a finger at recent legislation in California, which imposed requirements such as making sure that, when they opt in, users provided a physical signature.

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