A California federal court granted Singapore-based hotel booking firm Agoda Company Pte. Ltd.’s (“Agoda”) motion for summary judgment in a case involving alleged violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”). The plaintiff alleged that the confirmation text he received after booking travel on Agoda’s website [“Good news! Your Agoda booking [number] is confirmed. Manage your booking with our free app (alongside a link to download the app)] was a violation of the TCPA because, in part, the message was a telemarketing message sent without plaintiff’s consent. The court agreed with Agoda’s argument that despite the confirmation text message being sent by an automated dialing system and the including a link to Agoda’s website, the message was not advertising under the TCPA – instead it was a message tied to the plaintiff’s existing transaction. Moreover, the court noted that the plaintiff provided Agoda with his phone number and consented to receiving the text messages in accordance with Agoda’s terms of use and privacy policy.

Takeaway: Companies should note that some courts may find that a link to the company’s app sent along with a confirmation text does not rise to advertising or telemarketing under the TCPA, however, as we have previously written, the plaintiff’s bar continues to be very active in this space.