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Ode to My Telephone Stalkers

Ring! Ring! It's "Unavailable" calling again! Do telemarketers constantly calling your house annoy you as much as they annoy me?

Perhaps the telemarketers are just enamored with the computerized female voice on the other end of my home business line. Maybe that’s why they call daily; sometimes, even twice a day! And when they call the number on holidays, that shows real dedication. They don’t even take a day off to celebrate presidents’ birthdays or New Year’s Day! 

However, if they find the voicemail recording so addictive that they must call the number 365 days a year, I really wish that they wouldn’t start their dialing before 9 a.m., and call it quits by 7 p.m. in the evening. So, to show my unappreciation for their efforts, I’m dedicating this blog to them.

Dear “Card Services”:

Do you really think that I believe your first name is “Card” and your last name is “Services”? I have to ask, do you know that this is the 21st century and there’s this nifty service called “Caller ID”?  It’s quite a rush to see it at work. The person, on the other end of the line you are calling, can actually see that you’re not a close personal friend trying to get in touch with them (shocking, I know!). This identification service provides people like me with the option to either pick up the phone, or not, or perhaps pick up the phone and SCREAM AS LOUD AS THEY CAN into the receiver, hoping you’ll get the point that enough is enough. 

I’m guessing that you feel if you call this number every day that one day you’ll get me to pick the phone up and give you a response–and at that–I’ll just say “Yes! Please sell me your overpriced credit protection services! Please sign me up for all of your credit cards and special offers! My dream is to live in debt that the next 20 generations of my family will still be paying off.”

I sincerely hope that you have unlimited minutes on your calling plan. If you don’t, your phone bill is going to be a doozie after all of the missed calls you’ve racked up on my line.

Sincerely,

“Not wanting what you’re selling–Get a Life”

 

Dear “Salt Lake City, Utah,”

You are the anonymous caller that’s impressed me the most. Until now I never knew that a city had the power to dial a phone on its own. Can I ask who your service provider is? Last I checked, you needed to be a human being in order to take out a phone contract. You may have just qualified for the Guinness Book of World Records, being the first city to exhibit the living characteristics to think and use physical coordination to dial numbers. 

I have wondered from time to time what your voice sounds like, since I have never heard a city actually speak before. But that curiosity alone will not mobilize me enough to pick up the phone when I see your call letters blaze across the digital screen. 

I’ll be honest: your anonymity is a true turn off. Do you really think that anyone will believe you are a legitimate entity selling services when you consistently conceal your identity? No thank you. I don’t have the desire to give you all of my personal information over the phone and have my identity stolen today. I’m saving that excitement for my next lifetime. Carry on.

Sincerely,

“Stunned and Amazed That the Do Not Call List is Useless”

And finally,

Dear “Lenox Gifts,”

I do not own any Lenox,
I do not own it in a box,
I do not own it in my house,
I do not own it, nor my spouse.
What makes you think I would like some?
I am smart, I am not dumb.
While what you sell
May display quite well,
I did not invite you, to call me
Daily, from now ‘til 2023.

Sincerely,

“I don’t Know How I Ended up on your Contact List; Take a Hint–I Ain’t Answering the Phone”

And to that effect, I really have to wonder why companies will actually pay to have telemarketing services badger people Every. Single. Day. Couldn’t they be spending their money more productively on improving their products and services? Perhaps buying better coffee for their employees?

Are there really that many gullible people out there who will still give out their personal information to anonymous callers fronting for scams?  

And, just because people have credit cards, I completely disagree with the ability for those credit card companies to call you day and night trying to sell and market related services to you. Just because you do business with a bank, should not give them the right to harass you on a consistent basis.

Ah well … gotta go! My phone is ringing!

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Steve February 22, 2012 at 03:00 PM
If your number is on the Do Not Call List you can file a complaint on the telemarketers calling by going here https://complaints.donotcall.gov/complaint/complaintcheck.aspx
Laura Madsen February 22, 2012 at 03:26 PM
Thanks, Steve. I did report a number there once or twice and the calls did stop for a while from those particular numbers. However, within a few months, new anonymous callers sprang up to replace them. It's like a never-ending cycle. :/ And that doesn't work for credit card companies or companies that you have done business with in the past. Apparently, if you have a business relationship with them, they reserve the right to call you like there's no tomorrow. A few years ago I got so fed up with one credit card company that I actually called them and cancelled my card as a result of their perpetual calling, trying to get me to transfer balances and sign up for various credit programs. They harassed me, a customer, into a place where they lost my business for good.
Steve February 23, 2012 at 02:44 PM
If you ask to be removed from the calling list most companies will comply, it may take 30 days or so. Another thing you can do if a number displays on the caller ID but the name does not is put the number in a search engine like Google. There are web sites were people report the number and sometimes have more information. For example i was getting calls from WCA, e.g. 305-587-2096. I had never done business with them. So I searched on the number and found they are a huge telemarketing company that sends out recored messages. I found out you can go to their web site and put your number on their do not call list:> http://www.wcaconsent.com/DNC_Removal.asp I did that and the calls stopped but I also reported their number to the do not call web site. If enough people report a number then the government can take action and fine the telemarketer. Some calls you can't stop are charity solicitations, political messages and surveys.
Laura Madsen February 23, 2012 at 03:25 PM
So it seems there are multiple do not call lists, depending on the source of the call. I guess the Federal one isn't enough. Interesting. Personally, I'm not a fan that charities, political organizations and survey companies get free reign, though. While some organizations may call people legitimately, I'm sure there are other scammers out there that pose as charities or people conducting "real" surveys that are calling people repeatedly, illegally. Thanks for sharing what you know, though! I've added a few more numbers to the complaint list.

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