Monday, January 28, 2008

44 Strikes and You're (Not) Out

...But you should be.

In spite of our number being on the "do not call" list, we have been getting a surprising number of telemarketing calls. One number in particular has called here 44 times! They called about ten times on Saturday alone. You would think, that after trying oh, say, a dozen or so times without success, these people (or robots, or whatever) would FIGURE IT OUT. We are NOT going to answer. Not now. Not ever. No matter how many times you call. If the caller ID doesn't show the name or number of someone we know, that phone ain't gettin' answered, except by our answering machine. And of course, the fuckwit at this toll-free number never leaves a message.

I plugged the number into google. It turns out we are not the only ones being harassed by it -- and it is listed as a political organization, which makes it exempt from the "do not call" list restrictions. It seems to be a different group at different times. Apparently this number cannot be blocked by standard (or any other) means. But you know what, I don't think it would burden free speech overly much to have a rule about how many times those twerps can call you in one day. Because ten times in one afternoon is borderline stalking behavior. And if their call is so damn important, they can leave a message. But they don't. At least they don't have my cell number. That would be much, much worse.

14 comments:

MW (Just 'Cuz) said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but you seem to be a bit peeved. ;-)

A company called American Windows and Doors (or something like that) called my house about a thousand times this past summer, fall and winter and (I just realized!) finally stopped calling a month or more ago (I hope I haven't jinxed myself by thinking about it). I never answered the phone in all those times, except once, when I had finally had enough, but no one would talk!! I got on the internet and discovered that many others were getting the same sort of psychotic, unproductive calls from this same company. I reported their number to "Do Not Call" several times, but it did no good, at least not for the first few months. One of my revenge plans involved putting the phone up to my computer speakers the next time they called and playing something like this YouTube video.

LL said...

As far as I'm concerned... political calls should also be on the "no call" list. It's true they have the right to free speech, but they don't have the right to be heard. At least not through unsolicited phone calls.

And it would be a robot playing a recorded message. They couldn't afford it if it weren't.

fermicat said...

MW - I was beyond peeved on Saturday when they kept interrupting my nap. Over and over.

ll - I agree that people should be able to opt out of political calls as well as any other type of unsolicited calls. It sucks that you cannot block this number. If they are robocalls, the silver lining is that they'll probably stop after Super Tuesday. In the mean time, I'm not going to pick up and find out.

dr sardonicus said...

You can pass all the laws you want, but they're worthless if no one is willing to enforce them, and that's where I think we're at with the no-call legislation.

I'm not in favor of restrictions on political calling, though, because each restriction placed upon political free speech tilts the balance even more in the direction of the wealthy than it is already.

fermicat said...

There are plenty of ways to reach people without bombarding them with unwanted phone calls. Leave one message, that's fine. Calling me fifty times and never once leaving a message sucks and makes me want to throw my phone on the driveway and run over it a few dozen times.

MW (Just 'Cuz) said...

I forgot to say that if I recognize the phone number on caller ID, I always pick up the phone and hang it right back up again. There is no reason not to if they aren't going to stop calling anyway; but at least I am able to reduce the number of rings I have to hear.

fermicat said...

Yeah, I do that sometimes to the repeat offenders. Bastards!

Jim Donahue said...

We keep getting calls from debt collectors for someone else--either this person lied and gave our phone number or we have her old number (though the phone company says our number was new when we got it).

No matter how many times the debt collectors call and we tell them we have no idea who this person is and they REALLY need to take our number out of the system, they call again in a few days. It's maddening.

Ben O. said...

I think your flag for this post says it all "Things that suck"

Ben O.

fermicat said...

That "things that suck" tag is popular on this blog... I enjoy bitching, I guess.

Minnesotablue said...

I really hate it when they call late in the evening! I am afraid to take the phone off the hook in case of emergency but I wish I could crawl through the phone wires and spit in their face!

Kathleen said...

Ah, yes, the joys of telemarketers. I was reading an article this morning in the Freep about how the Do Not Call Registry hurt the telemarketing industry (DUH), but also how a lot of the call bank jobs that went to India are coming back because companies figured out (another DUH) that one bad service call reflects poorly on the company and that people will take action. I thought that was good news.

magnetbabe said...

Damn it! Bogger just ate my comment. Anyway, I agree they should leave a message. Whatever their message is, they are not succeeding in getting it across and need to try a different method.

fermicat said...

I see I'm not alone. The good news, is that the 44-strikes organization hasn't called since Sunday. The bad news is that the others didn't get the memo!