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Posts Tagged ‘text messages’

911 to text is here

As expected. Text-to-911 service is available now in Harris and Fort Bend counties for Verizon and T-Mobile wireless customers. “This is not to be used just because people like to text, but when people cannot make a voice call,” said Sonya Clauson, spokeswoman for the Greater Harris County 911 Emergency Network. The service for Verizon […]

Text to 911 option coming locally

Ever wonder why you can’t text 911? Well, in Harris and Fort Bend Counties, you will soon be able to. By the end of the year, millions of Houston-area residents are expected to have a silent alternative: the Text-to-911 option for emergencies. Despite the popularity of messaging, the service hasn’t been available in most of […]

Texting 911

This is clearly the way of the future, though I admit that I myself would be a bit leery of using it right now. With eight of 10 Americans using their cellphones to send or receive text messages, some emergency response centers are updating their technology. Among them are centers in 12 Texas counties, hoping […]

Another slap on the wrist for a prosecutor behaving badly

Weak. Very weak. The Texas Bar Association has issued a public reprimand to state district Judge Kaycee Jones for her role in clandestine texting during a criminal trial while she was a prosecutor and before her election to the bench last year. Jones, who oversees the 411th court in Polk, Trinity and San Jacinto counties, […]

Who’s spamming you?

Probably someone from Dallas. Figures, right? When it comes to those annoying and unsolicited text messages you get imploring you to reply for weight loss tips, “free” money, and adult-oriented services, Houston and Dallas are smartphone spam lords of Texas, acccording to Internet security firm AdaptiveMobile. The funny part is that most of the SMS […]

Stockman and Bitcoin

Somehow, this doesn’t surprise me. U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman, a Friendswood Republican with a history of flouting campaign finance laws, entered a new legal gray area this week when he announced his campaign can now accept donations in Bitcoin, a private virtual currency. Stockman, who is challenging U.S. Sen. John Cornyn of Texas in this […]

Consequences are for suckers

They’re not for former judge Elizabeth Coker, thank you very much. State District Judge Elizabeth E. Coker, who presided over Trinity, Polk and San Jacinto counties before resigning Dec. 6 under fire in a texting controversy, filed Monday to run for Polk County district attorney next year. Coker will be challenging the incumbent prosecutor, Lee […]

From the “Judges Behaving Badly” files

We’ll start with now-former Judge Elizabeth Coker: An East Texas state district judge who had been accused of sending text messages to coach a prosecutor during a trial, being biased against some attorneys and improperly meeting with jurors has resigned as part of an agreement with a state judicial commission. Elizabeth E. Coker did not […]

Have you gotten your text from the Ben Hall campaign?

The Ben Hall campaign sent out this press release on Tuesday: The Ben Hall for Mayor campaign has launched a new initiative to reach Houston voters and communicate with them on a platform where they already spend a lot of their time – their cell phones. The Hall campaign has partnered with Politikast, a mobile […]

Less is more, local legislative edition

Harris County and the city of Houston generally play more defense than offense when the Legislature is in session, so as a rule the fewer bills that get passed that affect them, the better. County and city lobbyists said their efforts to scuttle unfunded mandates and bills that would have handcuffed local governments’ powers largely […]

Houston may ban texting while driving

This will likely come before City Council later this year. Houston will consider an ordinance banning texting while driving if the Legislature again fails to enact a statewide ban, Mayor Annise Parker said Tuesday. Parker, flanked by 30 people ranging from high school students to the fire chief, announced the official start of the city’s […]

TEC approves texting campaign contributions

From Jerad Najvar: After brief discussion and comments by Jerad Najvar, attorney for Harris County Republicans, the TEC voted unanimously to approve a draft opinion permitting Texas political committees to accept contributions by text message. APPROVED OPINION HERE (the first page is a diagram of each method) The request proposed two methods for processing text […]

Texting campaign contributions

I see no reason why this should not be allowed. A Houston-based PAC is asking the Texas Ethics Commission to approve a proposal that would allow the committee to solicit text message contributions from donors in the state. The Federal Election Commission has approved a text-to-donate model for federal campaigns, but demand for the service […]

Hang up and walk

We all know that texting and other smartphone tomfoolery while driving is a bad idea. Turns out that texting while walking isn’t so safe, either. On city streets, in suburban parking lots and in shopping centers, there is usually someone strolling while talking on a phone, texting with his head down, listening to music, or […]

New frontiers in spam

Text message spam. Frankly, I’m surprised it’s taken this long to be seen as a major problem. Once the scourge of e-mail providers and the Postal Service, spammers have infiltrated the last refuge of spam-free communication: cellphones. In the United States, consumers received roughly 4.5 billion spam texts last year, more than double the 2.2 […]

Here are the vetoes

Sunday was the deadline for Rick Perry to sign, veto, or leave unsigned all of the remaining bills from the regular legislative session. He had 1170 pieces of legislation awaiting a decision while he was busy gallivanting around the country. Yesterday, he finished the task, issuing a total of 24 vetoes, one of which was […]

Saturday video break: The Magnited States of America, where you are FREE to TEXT in a THE-A-TER

In case you haven’t seen it yet, another reason to love the Alamo Drafthouse: I wonder if this girl has figured out yet what a spectacle she has made of herself. CNN’s Anderson Cooper picked up on it the other day: Bravo, I say. See Austin360 for more.

Texting while driving ban passed

Somehow, this managed to happen as everything else was going on at the end of the session. The Senate voted for a statewide ban on texting while driving Wednesday night, as an amendment added to another bill. Sen. Judith Zaffirini, D-Laredo, added the bill as an amendment to a bill that would allow retired peace […]

House passes texting while driving ban

Put that phone down and drive. This is no LOL matter: Texting while driving could soon be prohibited statewide. The House preliminarily passed a bill [Thursday] that singles out “text-based communication” — texting, instant messaging or e-mailing — while driving as a punishable traffic offense. Using other applications, like GPS, Google or Facebook, on a […]

Texting while lawmaking

This is a fascinating issue. A bill by Rep. Todd Hunter, R-Corpus Christi , would make an addition to the Texas Open Meetings Act. And it would apply to any public meeting, whether it’s a House committee or a small-town city council meeting. The measure, House Bill 2977, says an official would be committing an […]

No more texting while driving in Seguin

Add another city to the list of those that have banned the practice. Seguin has joined several area cities in banning texting and using applications on cell phones while driving. The new ordinance went into effect [last] Saturday, joining bans already in place in San Antonio, Universal City, Selma and Converse. The Seguin City Council […]

Facebook mail

I’m sure by now you’ve heard about this. On Monday, Facebook founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said the world’s largest social network plans to launch an updated version of its messaging service that will allow users to send emails and SMS text messages from inside their Facebook Messages account, and that the Palo Alto, […]

You can still text while driving in Arlington

At least one town is bucking the no-texting-while-driving trend. The Arlington City Council on Tuesday decided not to consider a citywide ban on texting while driving. City councilmember Robert Rivera had requested to set texting while driving as an agenda item for the council’s next session in August, but when Mayor Robert Cluck called for […]

New frontiers in open meeting laws

There’s an awful lot here to think about. The Texas Legislature may become the first in the nation to tackle whether tweeting and texting is being used to circumvent open meetings laws and whether the private devices of public officials can be subject to open records searches. “They are new tools to communicate with constituents […]

The technical solution to texting while driving

There’s nothing revolutionary about a device like this, but it could have a big effect. I s a teenager’s life worth $99.95? Is avoiding a lawsuit arising from unsafe driving practices by fleet drivers worth that investment? Rodney, Robbie and Rocky Campbell hope so. The three brothers from Longview, along with Rodney’s wife, Tina Campbell, think […]

San Antonio proposes texting-while-driving ban

It may wind up being a bit more than that. The days of eating double-bacon cheeseburgers, putting on makeup and sending text messages from behind the wheel could be numbered in the Alamo City. Police Chief William McManus on Wednesday made a pitch to the City Council’s Governance Committee for a citywide ordinance that would […]

No texting while driving in Conroe

Conroe is set to join the parade of cities banning texting while driving. The ordinance is expected to be introduced at the March 25 meeting and could take effect in April. Those in violations of the proposed law would face fines of up to $500. The proposed ordinance would cover any text-based communication, such as […]

Endorsement watch: Going mobile

This is very cool. From the inbox: CAUCUS PAC INTRODUCES MOBILE ENDORSEMENT CARD Pro-equality voters in Houston are used to turning to the Houston GLBT Political Caucus PAC endorsement card for the candidates most qualified and most ready to address the concerns of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, whether they get the card […]

No texting while deliberating

If you get called in for jury duty in Harris County, you can now get free WiFi in the Jury Assembly Room. But once you get into a courtroom, and especially if you get empaneled, you should expect to have to unplug. If you think you’re going to use your spanking new iPhone to entertain yourself […]

Galveston bans texting while driving

Consider yourself warned. Galveston City Council members banned [texting while driving] Thursday, making the city the first in Galveston County to forbid motorists from using cell phones and other hand-held devices to view, send or compose electronic messages while driving. Those caught texting while driving face a class C misdemeanor — the equivalent of a […]

Bellaire bans texting while driving

First West U, now Bellaire. Following the lead of the city of Austin, the City Councils in Bellaire and West U Monday adopted ordinances to prohibit texting or web browsing while driving. Laws are in effect immediately, though not enforceable by respective police entities until proper legal notice is published and appropriate street signs are […]

West U bans texting while driving

The West University Place City Council voted on Monday night to ban texting while driving. Drivers who text behind the wheel in within the city’s limits have one week to stop before the council votes unanimously again to ban the practice. […] The ban also applies to Web browsing and accessing sites like Facebook and […]

West U to consider a texting-while-driving ban

Last year, the city of West University Place banned using cellphones while in school zones. Now they’re looking to add a texting ban to their roster of no-nos. West U. City Council has asked city staff members to draft an ordinance banning texting while driving. A proposed law is likely to appear on the council […]

Austin to ban texting while driving

After considering it for a long time, the city of Austin is set to ban texting while driving. Council members Mike Martinez and Chris Riley and Mayor Lee Leffingwell are proposing to prohibit writing, sending or reading text messages, instant messages or e-mails or viewing the Internet on a cell phone or other portable electronic […]