The Supreme Court of the United States came back for its 2012 session Monday and decided it will not take the appeal filed by a provider of prerecorded telephonic messages seeking to overturn enforcement of a ban on automated robo-calls in Indiana. FreeEats.com Inc. used an artificially intelligent calling system to contact residents throughout the country on behalf of its clients, including Economic Freedom Fund. The messages were political in nature. In 2006, Indiana filed a complaint alleging FreeEats.com had violated the state’s Autodialer Law. FreeEats.com contended the law violates the Indiana Constitution’s free speech clause.
The trial court ruled in favor of FreeEats.com, denying in part and affirming in part a preliminary injunction request from FreeEats.com. But the Indiana justices in a 4-1 decision in December 2011 held that the state can continue enforcing a ban on automated robo-calls, finding the law serves a significant government interest in trying to prevent unwanted calls. Justice Frank Sullivan dissented, believing the statute at question imposes an unconstitutional material burden on political speech under the state and federal constitutions.