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HATE HATE HATE HATE HATE - Nothing to See Here

Jan. 14th, 2008

02:45 pm - HATE HATE HATE HATE HATE

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I HATE telemarketers.

I HATE, far, far more[1], automated calls from companies/organisations which fail completely not to be out-and-out abuse/harassment. These are recordings or computer-only calls which make me want to go thermonuclear.

The calls of this nature that we receive (on our home line) all fall into one of two categories, both horribly wrong.

  1. The message says that "by listening to the following message, you agree that you are <person-who-doesn't-exist>" ... and you have NO way to identify the scum calling you -- not even a phone number -- without you listening further, and thus by their bullshit claim verifying that you are the non-existent person! ARGH!

  2. The computer provides a way to "press 1 if you are <non-existent-person>" or "press 2 if this is the correct household but <non-existent-person> is not at home" but ... REQUIRE YOU TO CALL THEM (and they only give a number and DON'T identify what company is harassing you) to *%@^ing tell them that the person does not live here.
It is wrong, wrong, wrong that they can get away with this and not get fined up the bloody wazoo or maybe get a little jail time to let them contemplate the *%@&ing egregious harassment they are feculently spewing forth onto the world.

I don't know if there's even any rules/laws that would stop them acting in this manner. Maybe "oh, we were trying to contact John Doe, with whom we have a legitimate business relationship" is a catch-all get out of jail free card.

The primary abusers seem to be collections agencies, which seem to think it's perfectly ok to harass people, since that's what they do, but while it may be ok to "harass" the person who's failing to pay their bills, it is NOT ok to harass innocent third parties. I think these scumbags go "hm, we don't know exactly where to find John Doe, but it's cheap to have our computer repeatedly call every Doe in the phone book!" This really needs to STOP. Argh.

[1] A whole LOT more. I get very few plain telemarketer calls these days since they instituted the Federal DNC (Do-Not-Call) List. The calls now are even more infuriating, because it's harder to tell if they're simple SPAM or if they're some misdirected "legitimate" business call. Plus, the edge cases that are legal around the DNC list (charities, political organisations ... and businesses under certain circumstances) irritate me. Heck, it almost makes me appreciate telemarketers. At least there's a little bit of honesty in their blatant SPAMishness even if they are also horrible.

Current Location: 806
Current Mood: angryangry

Comments:

[User Picture]
From:mavjop
Date:January 14th, 2008 11:43 pm (UTC)
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Scumbag company using method #2 give phone number 1-888-716-0010.

Called them. They, unlike the other company I've called (company using method #1), immediately had the info in front of them (the name of the person they were trying to reach at our home phone number).

When I said that there is nobody by that name at this address, he tried to dig asking "do you know anybody by that name?". It's a bloody common name. The answer would be yes, however I believe that is of no relevance whatsoever. The guy acted like he was entitled to interrogate me about this. Scum. I told him that it was a common name and that I did not know anybody in this area (I should have said state) by that name. I told him I did not think it was ok to call and harass random people. He said he wasn't harassing, he was just asking a question. I said I didn't think he had any right to demand that information. He said they could do without my information and hung up.

If they call again, I'm going to be really furious.

[Edit] There seems to be some information about these buggers at http://whocallsme.com/Phone-Number.aspx/8887160010

Edited at 2008-01-14 11:46 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]
From:wizzu
Date:January 15th, 2008 05:08 am (UTC)
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So why do you have a home phone line? Is it useful?

I've never owned a home phone line (for the about 10+ years of living on my own). Then again, I don't really get many telemarking calls either since I got my mobile number on the national telemarketing stop list.
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[User Picture]
From:mavjop
Date:January 15th, 2008 07:10 am (UTC)
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Can't get DSL without a phone line (well, nothing even vaguely affordable -- and even the crazy-expensive business options, it can be dangerous not having a dial tone on your DSL line; careless telco employees have been known to repurpose pairs with no dial tone on them -- oops?!).

Having a phone line, I am somewhat reluctant to just turn off ringers on any/all phones on it. I've considered it, but sometimes it's useful to be able to call home in the event that my esteemed spouse's cell phone is turned off (by mistake) or what have you.
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[User Picture]
From:wizzu
Date:January 15th, 2008 07:30 am (UTC)
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I see about the requirement to have a phone line for DSL, though a bit weird (to me).

But the "sometimes useful" doesn't seem like an adequate advantage when compared to having to deal with the frustration/anger-introducing other calls. Could you get caller screening on it, where you could only let through calls from your mobiles?
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[User Picture]
From:mavjop
Date:January 15th, 2008 08:30 am (UTC)
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I don't know if there's any way to selectively allow (or even selectively block) numbers from calling the land-line. I suppose I could look into it, but this being the US of A, the phone company has indubitably decided to turn these features into a ... revenue stream.
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[User Picture]
From:elusivedream78
Date:February 22nd, 2008 10:24 pm (UTC)

NAKED DSL. (yah really)

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I'm very happy with this service - DSL without a dialtone - and haven't had any downtime as the pairs are labeled on the punch down block with the number or if they are not, they will not be disconnected (there's a multitude of reasons as a former Cincinnati Bell employee who worked in their NOC and went to CO's to replace Cisco stuff when broken and talked to the peeps there) -- so, save yourself some money, get a cheap VOIP provider like the 4 bucks a month I pay for mine (voicenetwork.ca but I don't care if you sign up and I don't get anything... lol), and I think you'll be a happier camper - no more spam calls, my man!

- John C. Young
jcy@nevermind.org

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[User Picture]
From:mavjop
Date:February 23rd, 2008 04:42 am (UTC)

Re: NAKED DSL. (yah really)

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I personally have no need of VOIP.

If I didn't have to have the voice line for the DSL, I wouldn't bother having a land-line at all.

While wherever you are it may be possible to get cheap "naked DSL", it is hard to get that here, plus PacBell--ur, I mean SBC--ur, I mean AT&T folks in this part of the world have a history of screwing up and taking over pairs without dialtone on them. I know people who had to run outside if they saw a PacBell/SBC truck outside, otherwise there was a good chance they'd lose their DSL.

So, I'm glad you have service that works for you, but not really available here. We've taken to just ignoring calls mostly.
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[User Picture]
From:mavjop
Date:January 15th, 2008 08:36 am (UTC)
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Oh, another thing. The US Federal Do-Not-Call list is /just/ for telemarketing -- it doesn't block charities, political parties, or companies with whom you "have a business relationship" from calling you (and since they're not trying to sell goods or services, it doesn't stop the calls in question) -- and the some of the FCC rules governing what you can/cannot do in telephone communications /explicitly/ exempt debt collection agencies. Gah. Ridiculous.
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From:bizzy_
Date:January 15th, 2008 12:21 am (UTC)
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life has been much nicer since I stuck a fax on my home phone (I only really have it since I have DSL)
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[User Picture]
From:mavjop
Date:January 15th, 2008 01:14 am (UTC)
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We did that, and then we got more and more junk faxes all the time, and it seemed to cause them to stop calling only at vaguely sane hours, and start calling at 2am, 4am, 6am, ...
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From:lerryn
Date:January 15th, 2008 06:16 am (UTC)
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I received two calls from one of those pieces of excrement last week, one at around 3:30 in the afternoon, and another just before 8 the next morning. Twice I went through "press 4 if the person does not live there" and the second time the person I spoke to told me not to make threats. I figure turnabout is fair play with their threatening calls directed to a person who doesn't exist, since all I did was tell them that I would be reporting them to the local PD for telephone harassment. And then follow through.
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[User Picture]
From:mavjop
Date:January 15th, 2008 07:13 am (UTC)
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Jeez. Yeah, you saying that is by no means a threat in any negative sense. It is absolutely reasonable for you to tell them to stop calling and to tell them that you will be reporting their company for telephone harassment. Go you! I suspect that our local PD would look at us like we're crazy if we tried.
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From:lerryn
Date:January 15th, 2008 09:12 am (UTC)
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I suspect that our local PD would look at us like we're crazy if we tried.


You may be able to get them on phone harassment charges if you have already made a reasonable effort to inform them that this was the wrong number, which it sounds like you have done. That was my reasoning behind reporting the idiots, since I told them the same thing twice in two days.
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[User Picture]
From:mavjop
Date:January 15th, 2008 11:03 pm (UTC)
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*nod* If the calls continue, I may do so.

My implication was that SJPD are kind of ... well, I don't get much of an impression of them caring much about small stuff.
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