There are now some 390 South African mobile content and application providers that have committed themselves to upholding the Code of Conduct of the Wireless Application Service Providers’ Association (WASPA).
“Version 14.6 of the WASPA Code of Conduct remains a living document in step with the latest mobile developments. It has been updated and fine-tuned several times to better protect the mobile consumer and the result is a world-leading document of which the local industry can be justly proud,” says James McNab, chair of WASPA’s Code of Conduct Working Group.
WASPA first introduced a Code of Conduct to regulate the then emerging mobile content and applications industry in 2004.
“From a loose collection of like-minded firms wanting to offer increased choice to the mobile consumer, the sector is today an important contributor to South Africa’s vibrant cellular industry. Our members are prolific producers of apps and the interesting content that makes them appealing to well over 35-million cellular consumers,” McNab adds.
The Code explicitly aims to protect the South African mobile consumer. Provisions relating to how mobile content and services may be advertised, for example, are vigorously enforced. According to WASPA, the Code is aligned with the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act (ECTA), the Consumer Protection Act (CPA) and the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPI). This means that members who align their activities with the WASPA code are in full compliance with the applicable legislation.
A non-profit organisation, WASPA was founded on 26 August 2004 in South Africa with the full support of the three South African network operators: Cell C, MTN and Vodacom. Fostering consumer confidence in the WASP industry through responsible self-regulation is a key focus of the Association.
WASPA was formed to represent and self-regulate the wireless content and applications industry in a changing mobile landscape and has now clocked up some 13 years’ experience as an effective industry representative body with an enforceable Code of Conduct.
“A single regulatory document in the form of the Code ensures that operating guidelines are always perfectly clear to our members and with greater clarity comes enhanced professionalism,” says McNab.