Thursday, September 27, 2012

Do Not Call!

One day last week, I got SIX telemarketing calls. I'd noticed the amount had increased significantly lately, but that was the straw that broke the camel's back. 

It leaves me in a jam.

Do I answer the call and abruptly cut in to tell the person on the other end to take my name off the list? Do I let it go to voice mail then delete the message later?

Thankfully, we have caller I.D., so I know exactly when an incoming call is from a telemarketer, charity organization or survey group. I lump all of those calls together as equally annoying.

Not another telemarketer! Photo courtesy of jppi at Morguefile.

Yesterday, after receiving my 3rd call of the day, I pressed "talk" on my phone, then immediately pressed "off".

Rude? Most definitely. But, so are telemarketing calls.

I spent the summer right after college working as a telemarketer, so I feel a bit for the people on the other end of the phone.

First, I will say "I'm sorry" to all of the people I called.

Second, I will say the dialogue has gotten so much more annoying. Telemarketers try to get you chatting as if it were a casual conversation before they dive into their uninterrupted spiel. It's true. They don't even pause to breathe! That's so it feels really rude to interject a polite refusal. The people that write the scripts are counting on the manners of their potential customers. The longer they can keep you on the phone, they greater chance they have of making a sale. That's why I don't care if I'm rude. When I did the job, I'd rather be cut off early than have to go through the whole dialogue before getting a polite "no, thank you." 

Photo courtesy mconnors at Morguefile.
Aside from blatant rudeness, the best strategy is avoidance.

My husband and I had signed up for the national "Do Not Call" registry several years ago. So, why did the number of calls we receive suddenly spike? It turns out, if your service is interrupted in any way, like for instance when I switched our phone service provider from Verizon to Time Warner Cable a couple of months ago, your number is removed from the list.

It took less than a minute to re-sign up, but we are once again on the "Do Not Call" list. Are you?


  1. I wish we could do a "do not call" thing for all the automated calls we get from the school district on discounted lunches, medical screenings, and reminders about fundraisers. I almost missed a "real" call from the school last year about my sick kid because I thought it was just another automated nag call. sorry. I'm a ranty kind of mood today. Better go eat some chocolate...

  2. You know, political calls are exempt from the do not call list. I think I'll need some chocolate to get through the elections.