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Sat Aug 10, 2013, 11:52 AM

Anything else besides Do Not Call List to stop telemarketers?

For the first time in my life, I have a land line number that's listed. I got it because the alarm system required a land line. I probably should have made the number an unlisted, non-published one, but am tired of all the little $2-3 monthly fees for extras, so decided not to.

After the number was connected, I added it to the Do Not Call Registry immediately.

After a couple of weeks, the telemarketing calls began. I also got calls from collection agencies looking for some female who apparently used to have that number. After a month or two, the collection calls stopped, but the telemarketing calls didn't.

I checked to make sure the number was listed as a "do not call" number, and it is. On some days, I was getting as many as 10 calls, which became very annoying as I have to stop what I'm doing to answer the phone. I called my phone company, and they put a block on my number to prevent anonymous and private numbers from ringing through. That helped reduce the calls by about half.

The calls I still receive are not charities, political, or companies that I have a relationship with or have requested information from. They're of the "lower your credit card interest rates" or "we recently sent you a package, press 1 if you've received it, press 2 if you haven't" variety.

I used to get spam faxes at the office, and spent a year filling out FCC complaints on them, sending a copy of the fax to the FCC and they never slowed down, despite getting letters back from the FCC that they were investigating.

I think asking to have your number added to a company's do not call list is a scam. They remove your number from their list, then sell it to another company, and this is repeated over and over.

Is there some secret I don't know about? I'm really getting sick of the calls, and some of the callers--once you get past the automated recording--are downright nasty when they realize you aren't interested and don't want to be bothered.

If we had a governmental body that represented the people in this country, instead of opt out we'd have opt in, with stiff penalties for companies that call when they shouldn't, but of course we don't, since our representatives are owned by corporations.

Would appreciate advice if anyone knows of something else that can be done to eliminate or reduce the calls, other than changing to an unlisted phone number--and even then I'm not sure it would make much difference.

Thanks in advance.

69 replies, 6063 views

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Reply Anything else besides Do Not Call List to stop telemarketers? (Original post)
AndyA Aug 2013 OP
brooklynite Aug 2013 #1
SouthernLiberal Aug 2013 #32
tabbycat31 Aug 2013 #2
AndyA Aug 2013 #10
tabbycat31 Aug 2013 #14
backscatter712 Aug 2013 #50
bravenak Aug 2013 #3
AndyA Aug 2013 #11
backscatter712 Aug 2013 #52
BadgerKid Aug 2013 #64
bravenak Aug 2013 #65
PowerToThePeople Aug 2013 #4
dem in texas Aug 2013 #5
AndyA Aug 2013 #12
hollysmom Aug 2013 #58
Pab Sungenis Aug 2013 #6
dipsydoodle Aug 2013 #7
PD Turk Aug 2013 #8
LibDemAlways Aug 2013 #9
MadrasT Aug 2013 #13
AngryOldDem Aug 2013 #15
FLyellowdog Aug 2013 #44
pangaia Aug 2013 #16
Submariner Aug 2013 #17
AngryOldDem Aug 2013 #21
Th1onein Aug 2013 #18
AndyA Aug 2013 #27
Th1onein Aug 2013 #31
AndyA Aug 2013 #38
Th1onein Aug 2013 #39
AndyA Aug 2013 #43
csziggy Aug 2013 #34
MurrayDelph Aug 2013 #42
csziggy Aug 2013 #47
MattBaggins Aug 2013 #46
Alameda Aug 2013 #55
ms.smiler Aug 2013 #19
AndyA Aug 2013 #26
pipi_k Aug 2013 #20
backscatter712 Aug 2013 #54
applegrove Aug 2013 #22
millennialmax Aug 2013 #23
AndyA Aug 2013 #24
Rochester Aug 2013 #25
Jenoch Aug 2013 #28
pipi_k Aug 2013 #36
dipsydoodle Aug 2013 #51
Warpy Aug 2013 #29
pipi_k Aug 2013 #37
hobbit709 Aug 2013 #30
SoCalDem Aug 2013 #33
Lee-Lee Aug 2013 #35
spanone Aug 2013 #40
Cleita Aug 2013 #41
Jenoch Aug 2013 #45
meow2u3 Aug 2013 #48
backscatter712 Aug 2013 #49
IDemo Aug 2013 #53
greyl Aug 2013 #56
tularetom Aug 2013 #57
Newsjock Aug 2013 #59
DesertFlower Aug 2013 #60
Turbineguy Aug 2013 #61
DesertFlower Aug 2013 #62
williesgirl Aug 2013 #63
Posteritatis Aug 2013 #66
AndyA Aug 2013 #67
leftyladyfrommo Aug 2013 #68
1-Old-Man Aug 2013 #69

Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 11:55 AM

1. The answer is...no

You can report DNC violations, but spammers don't follow the rules.

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #1)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:54 PM

32. That is correct!

I was one of the first to sign up for do not call. And for a while, it worked. Now, I get phone calls from bill collectors looking for some with the same last name and first initial as my late husband. The listing is that way - his first initial and our last name. That means somebody went to the phone book to get a 'plausible' number. (this has been my number for more than 13 years).

I get phone calls from the 'lower your interest rate' scammers, all from different numbers.

What distresses me the most is when I get a phone call from a local business. I try to be polite, but also to point out to them that I know they are breaking the law. More and more of the time, it seems they have never even heard of the do not call law.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 11:57 AM

2. No advice

Since I'm not a landline user (the last time I had one I lived with my parents and it was theirs), but do you really use your phone or do you just have it for the alarm company. If nobody important calls you on that line, perhaps turn the ringer off.

Not sure how long it takes for the do not call list to go into effect, but I will warn you that as a political strategist (I've organized many a phone bank), any campaign calls are exempt from the list.

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Response to tabbycat31 (Reply #2)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:14 PM

10. These aren't political or charitable calls, they're commercial calls

The alarm system calls the land line first if there's a problem like a low battery or an intrusion alarm, and I have a couple of older Bell System phones that you can't turn the ringer off, you can only adjust the volume.

The Do Not Call list is supposed to go into effect after 30 days, and I'm well past that.

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Response to AndyA (Reply #10)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:25 PM

14. My office is getting commercial calls like crazy

We have one that's a robocall from an addiction center and others trying to sell us phone services.

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Response to AndyA (Reply #10)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:00 PM

50. Another thing is that a lot of telemarketers these days operate from India.

They completely ignore the Do Not Call list. They're beyond the reach of the FCC and other regulators, so getting them to knock their shit off is next to impossible.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 11:57 AM

3. Yes I think they use the do not call list for leads.

They stopped calling my house. I just hang up within 2 seconds. Always. And I use my caller id. If the number looks strange and I don't recognize the name, I don't answer. If they manage to get me on the phone, I tell them I just got out of prison and I need a job. I've been hung up on for that.

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Response to bravenak (Reply #3)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:16 PM

11. LOL maybe I should try the prison line

I normally do hang up, but the automated recorded calls just call back the next day, they never remove you from their list.

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Response to bravenak (Reply #3)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:04 PM

52. I notice that their war dialers listen for "Hello?... Hello?"

When they hear the second "Hello?", you hear some clicks on the line and they connect you with a telemarketer.

So when I pick up, I only give one hello, then I listen. If it's a friend, they'll speak up immediately. If it's a telemarketer, the system will wait for that second "Hello."

For extra fun, use an answering machine with an outgoing message "Hello? ... "Hello? ... I can't come to the phone right now. Leave a message!"

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Response to bravenak (Reply #3)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 11:53 PM

64. Other ideas

Grandmother just died...about to file bankruptcy...or just take the call and listen silently. They've all worked.

Once I received a caller who insisted I was overdue on a loan and threatened legal action. Knowing I had no debt at the time, I said, "OK, I have no debts, so go right ahead."

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Response to BadgerKid (Reply #64)

Sun Aug 11, 2013, 12:11 AM

65. I lik the ones whose number shows up on my caller id.

I call them back. And back. And back. I ask for credit card numbers to " process" their earlier request. The supervisor asked me not to call back. I called one more time.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 11:58 AM

4. unplug the phone

or turn off the ringer.

If you did not have a land line before, you will not miss it.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 11:59 AM

5. There's Nothing you can do

I have a land line number that is listed. This has been my phone number for over 30 years and I want to be in the phone book and on information in case someone needs to reach me. I am signed up for the National do not call and the Texas do not call. Both are jokes, the telemarketers just ignore the laws. The only thing to do is to hang up and don't waste time and energy trying to stop it. It is like swatting mosquitoes. They'll come buzzing back. Move on, you have better things to do with your life.

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Response to dem in texas (Reply #5)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:18 PM

12. I do normally hang up, but it doesn't make a difference.

I do have better things to do, which is why the constant interruption of the phone ringing is a problem. Not answering makes no difference, as they keep calling back, or the voice mail records the message every time they call.

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Response to dem in texas (Reply #5)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:29 PM

58. I agree with you

People I have not heard from in decades have contacted me. I do not believe in an unlisted phone. The do not call list used to work, but now it seems to make things worse. I don't know why that started. I can only block so many phones - I have staopped charities, but telling them I am on the do not call list and they don't bother me again, but the scams keep coming - no, I don't want that prepaid medical device you have waiting for me - 1000000 times no. No, I won't give to your scam vets charity ever!! No No No and Corey Booker, I am not voting for you, so you can just forget it!

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:01 PM

6. If they provide live operators

 

I find a blowhorn or rape siren very effective.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:02 PM

7. Soundest advice I'm come across

is to say "that sounds really interesting - hold on a minute there's somebody at the door"...............put the phone back on the later.

Personally I' m not averse to simply telling them to fuck off.

ps blowing a whistle down the phone is quite effective too.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:11 PM

8. I ask them for their credit card number

When they seem puzzled, I explain to them that my time is too valuable to waste for free, but for $30 an hour at a 4 hour minimum ill be happy to listen to their sales pitch.

Sometimes I'll ask for their home telephone number and ask them what time they eat dinner so I can interrupt them in the middle of their meal

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:11 PM

9. The "Do Not Call" list is a joke. It's not enforced and the

telemarketers know it. There are various call blocking devices available that may be worth looking into. It's a frustrating nuisance, for sure.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:20 PM

13. This is why I never answer the phone unless I recognize the number.

I just don't. And if a number keeps harassing me, I put them on my blocked callers list.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:26 PM

15. As you can see, not really.

But, if I don't recognize the number, I don't answer it. Caller ID does a pretty good job of letting me know what is a telemarketing call ("800 service," "name hidden," etc.) I figure just like my doorbell, just because I'm home I don't have to answer it if I don't want. If it's legit, they'll leave a message.

If, however, I do answer the call, and it's a telemarketer, I ask them politely to take my name off their list and/or otherwise do not call me again. Most do. However, for those tone deaf companies that think I will suddenly change my mind because of basic harassment, I let them know in no uncertain terms that if their calls continue, they will be reported to the state attorney general. That works, and other people I know who have done this say it works as well. Companies don't want the hassle.

I wish there was a way to stop this obvious abuse of a public utility, but there really isn't.

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Response to AngryOldDem (Reply #15)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 04:52 PM

44. This ^^^^^^.nt

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:31 PM

16. No solution that I know of.

I get maybe 2/day at my business. When the phone rings I have to turn off a machine, turn off a dust collector, etc..
Things I do-- to lighten up and not get myself all in a twisted knot and and a raging, spittle-immiting red-faced baboon..:>

1- Say, just a moment please, I will get.. " jack, who is in charge of accounts payable," whatever.. Then I put the phone on hold and go back to work.
2-Switch to my cordless extension phone. put it next to my jointer--that's a MACHINE, for you folks who were about to make a wisecrack.. :>) and turn the sucker on..
3- SCREECH like holy hell into the phone
4-Blow an ACME siren into the phone.
5- I have a few others as well....

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 12:31 PM

17. I lost my cool a few years ago in a fit of anger

told the telemarketer that if he called again "I would find him and kill him and his whole f*cking family".

I was working on a night project sleeping during the day at the time, and he woke me up again. The telemarketer calls stopped immediately, but I decided not to blow my top like that again in case I was recorded the next time and got in trouble with the cops.

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Response to Submariner (Reply #17)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 01:58 PM

21. I did something similar.

We had been getting calls -- sometimes several times a day -- from some business. After a week of telling them politely not to call, they called back, when I was in the middle of something (I believe packing up for a trip). Not a good time. So I went off on the caller, who then called me "psycho bitch" and hung up himself.

Not my finest hour, but dammit, you reach your limit after awhile. Seriously -- what part of "no" don't they understand? Do they seriously think that you will suddenly change your mind about what they're selling, if they call you 100 times a week?

If I want a product or service, I will find it on my own.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 01:10 PM

18. I get calls from telemarketers all the time. Let me tell you what I do.

I am actually NICE to them. I am kind and compassionate, and if I find that I actually can use the product that they are selling, and can afford it, I buy it. The reason that I have this attitude is because I used to BE a telemarketer. I raised my two children in this way. Along with waitressing, etc. I put myself through college in this way. Along with raising a chronically ill child. I was never asked to do anything illegal, and I never did anything illegal. I just earned extra money, so that I could support my family.

I'm tired of the demonization of telemarketers. They aren't all crooks. They aren't trying to interrupt your dinner hour. They are just regular human beings, most of them honest and decent, trying to make an honest and decent living.

Try changing your attitude about telemarketers. It might do you a world of good.

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Response to Th1onein (Reply #18)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:22 PM

27. I understand the people on the other end are just doing their jobs.

I don't have a beef with them, unless they get nasty with me, and they do get nasty sometimes.

I've been nice for almost a year now, asking them to please add my number to their do not call list. Unfortunately, this hasn't worked for some, as they continue to call. I recognize the script, I've heard it so often.

You'd think companies would be smart enough to not call numbers on the Do Not Call List, because obviously, whoever is at that number isn't interested in receiving calls of this nature. Seems their time and money would be better spent calling numbers that aren't on the list.

While you may view it as demonization of telemarketers, I view it as a repeated annoying interruption of my time. I do not have a phone number to be hounded by calls of this nature, I have it for my own convenience and security. I have made my preferences known by listing my number on the Do Not Call List, and they are ignoring it and intruding on my time by calling.

My attitude has degraded over the many months of phone calls, in which my request to not call is repeatedly ignored. The companies calling me at this point are indeed doing something illegal, as my number has been on the Do Not Call List for over 10 months, and these calls do not meet any of the exceptions.

I have no problem with folks earning an honest living, but at this point the companies calling me aren't abiding by the law.

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Response to AndyA (Reply #27)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:48 PM

31. Then file a complaint on the companies.

But when a telemarketer calls you anyway, recognize that they ARE just doing their jobs, and that they are people, too.

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Response to Th1onein (Reply #31)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 03:43 PM

38. I have filed complaints with the FCC

I do so for a year at my office, and they didn't do any good. Each complaint takes time to file as well. In this case, it was fax spam. I had to print out the completed form, then enclose a copy of the spam fax and mail it in.

Made no difference. I don't have time to do that receiving multiple calls per day, almost every day.

The people doing their jobs are an intrusion on my time, and they should probably know they're breaking the law when they're repeatedly told the number they've called is on the Do Not Call List, and their calls are not welcome. They need to take the hint.

I understand jobs are not easy to find these days, but am I expected to continue the disruptions so someone else can have a job? Very often, they are interrupting MY JOB and don't seem to be concerned about that.

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Response to AndyA (Reply #38)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 03:47 PM

39. You don't understand how telemarketing works.

The companies MUST buy the Do Not Call Lists. And they MUST scrub their call lists of the Do Not Calls. Someone above the telemarketers are not doing their job.

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Response to Th1onein (Reply #39)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 04:25 PM

43. Apparently there are a LOT of someone's above the telemarketers not doing their job

I do understand how telemarketing works. Or, at least how it's SUPPOSED to work.

The entire system is backward. Instead of opt out, it should be opt in. Calls can only be placed to numbers that have opted in to receiving these types of calls. Penalties for calling numbers that haven't opted in should be harsh: like $100 per call paid to the person at that number.

I'm sure there must be a few legit telemarketing companies out there, but I believe the vast majority are scams. The good ones advise that the number has been added to their do not call list when asked to do so, and that they are sorry for the inconvenience. Of course, if they had a current list as they're supposed to have, they wouldn't have called in the first place since my number has been on the list for over 10 months, so one could rightly question if they're a "good one" or not.

The scrubbing seems to work like this: they add you to their do not call list, then sell your number to 25 other telemarketers, who then begin calling you. Repeat, repeat, repeat.

Not sure how the call list scrubbing is monitored, but I've had a few that have called me at least a hundred times each, recorded call, no way to opt out...push 1 to get more information...hope they don't bill your number for $40 because you've "ordered" their service...when you finally get a person, they hang up when you ask to be removed, or say they've removed your number...tomorrow, same call, next week, same call, next month...same call.

It doesn't work, whether they MUST do it or not...a lot of them aren't.

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Response to Th1onein (Reply #18)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 03:21 PM

34. I'm polite to the American telemarketers

"Please do not call me again. Remove me from your calling list. Do not call this number again. Thank you!" Then I hang up and report the call to the Do Not Call list.

The Indian guys from "Microsoft Security Services" got cussed at until one day I just started laughing at them. They get very offended and hang up. I did that for a few weeks and they haven't called back in a month.

The operators for the telemarketers may not be to blame, but the companies that repeatedly call after being asked not to deserve every bit of demonization we can heap on them. And when the calls continue despite every effort to stop them, don't blame potential customers for getting angry.

Many of the "telemarketer" calls are not actually selling a product. Rachel and Lisa "from card services" does not work for a credit card company (http://www.cleveland.com/consumeraffairs/index.ssf/2013/07/rachel_robocallers_settle_with.html). It is a scam to gather credit card information to rip people off. The "free vacation" people want to suck you into a time share sales pitch (http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/World-Wise-Vacations/Las-Vegas-Nevada-89118/World-Wise-Vacations-Complete-scam-and-liars-stole-bank-account-info-processed-without-p-466518). The "security services" assholes just want to gain access to your computer to steal financial information (http://www.microsoft.com/security/online-privacy/msname.aspx). The scammers, especially the repeat callers, deserve to be abused in my opinion.

I've found that I can't NOT answer calls - Aetna does not provide caller ID info so we would not have gotten some essential calls over the last month. Some of my relatives and friends block caller ID so I'd miss their calls.

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Response to csziggy (Reply #34)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 03:57 PM

42. Last week we got two different calls from the Indian guys pretending to be Microsoft

The first time, was on my cellphone (which may have been forwarded from my house). I just said "Do you want to read your whole lie to me before I hang up and call the cops or should I just call the cops now?" They said something along the lines of "go ahead and call the cops."

The second time, they just hung up before saying anything.


They both the same fake number: 202-011-3341, which my cellphone has a block option for.

I'm waiting to see if they call again. I think the next time, I may ask them if they feel ashamed for taking work away from hard-working American crooks.

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Response to MurrayDelph (Reply #42)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 06:18 PM

47. Yeah, they either deny being thieves or laugh at you for attempting to report them

They're in India spoofing American phone numbers, so there really is nothing American authorities can do.

Laughing at them seems to offend them and it makes me feel better than cussing at them. I wish my husband still had Indian co-workers - I would get them to teach me a phrase to the effect that the callers are inadequate males who need to steal to feel like real men. Then I would still laugh at them!

I do put in complaints on the DoNotCall.gov site every time they call. Maybe someday the FTC/FCC can manage to block their spoofed calls.

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Response to Th1onein (Reply #18)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 06:06 PM

46. Bull fucking shit

They know full well how hated they are.

I could buy the car wash in town and hire kids to fling mud at cars coming down the road. I wouldn't;t play the poor old me card though.

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Response to Th1onein (Reply #18)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:20 PM

55. I do phone work also, it's amazing how demonized people who do phone work are

I worked on programs for various NGOs working on vital important issues, like Clean Water and such. It is a fact that these types of programs do work.

If people really did contribute on their own, there would be no need for people to call others at home.

I've been doing business to business calling for 16 years, had to do that after my work was outsourced (I'm a 3rd generation tailor)
Nobody wants to actually pay for the garments they wear now. People think paying a couple of thousand dollars for a custom tailored blouse, dress or suite is extravagant, but that is what a pair labor price is.

So....unless you make your own garments, or pay a fair price, you really don't have much to say. If you get a call you don't like, be polite and say you don't want whatever it is.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 01:15 PM

19. While the Do Not Call list is ineffective, there is a list that will seriously reduce the number of

unwanted calls, the Litigious Consumer database.

It may be you need only file one Complaint, to make it onto that list.

I’ll explain my experience. I was receiving more unwanted calls each day than legitimate calls. All my phone lines are on the Do Not Call list. So I read up on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.

http://transition.fcc.gov/cgb/policy/TCPA-Rules.pdf

I had become quite familiar with those autodialers which are used to make the calls prior to a recording playing or a person speaking. I had considered purchasing a recording device for the telephone. I had a script ready so I could obtain information from the callers. I had a camera ready to snap pictures of my caller ID and I had a phone Assistant to print the logs of my incoming calls.

I was informed and my trap was prepared to catch prey. Rather than a telemarketer, it was a debt collector who called. They were using an autodialer and calling for a family member in another town. I recognized violations of the FDCPA and TCPA and filed a Complaint in my local District Court. In my state, one can file for up to $8,000.

When you receive unwanted calls, you can select an option to eliminate your number from their database or request it of the calling party. You can also send a Cease & Desist letter to the company and see if they continue to call. Such a letter proves the company was knowingly contacting you improperly and triples the damages under the TCPA.

In my experience, it’s worth learning your rights and taking simple action to hold these scammers accountable. If you decide to follow the law, you too can deposit a check.

Since I filed my Complaint, I rarely receive unwanted calls. It’s actually a bit disappointing to me since I know my way to the District Court.

That Litigious Consumer list is the one that is really effective in my experience.


Also please note:

Beginning October 16, 2013, prior express written consent will be required for all autodialed and/or pre-recorded calls/texts sent/made to cell phone and pre-recorded calls made to residential land lines for marketing purposes.

Beginning October 16, 2013, the “established business relationship” exemption for pre-recorded telemarketing calls to residential landlines will be eliminated.

The TCPA provides for either actual damages or statutory damages ranging from $500.00 to $1,500.00 per unsolicited call/message.


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Response to ms.smiler (Reply #19)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:15 PM

26. Thank you -- I'm going to save this information and give it a try

I'm really sick of the calls. It's an interruption in my day, and when you have to repeatedly stop what you're doing to answer the phone, each call is increasingly annoying.

Much appreciated!

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 01:48 PM

20. You're right about...

the unlisted, unpublished number...

it didn't make a damned bit of difference.

They have machines that dial sequences of numbers, apparently, so even if your number isn't listed anyplace, it can still be called. As mine was. So it didn't make sense to pay for a number that could still be pestered by telemarketers.

I have caller ID so it's pretty easy to tell the legitimate callers.

The Do Not Call Registry is pretty much a joke.

So. Every so often I get into a bad mood and, if pestered enough by those assclowns, I will retaliate with a sharp blast from my rape whistle.

Funny...the calls stop for a while.



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Response to pipi_k (Reply #20)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:18 PM

54. Airhorns work too!

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:07 PM

22. If you get a survey call and at the end they say "you may be eligible for a prize, may we

call you in that eventuality" say "NO".

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:12 PM

23. What's real great is when they call YOU and put you on HOLD.

 

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:12 PM

24. I may have found a solution

A friend who is familiar with telemarketing equipment just advised me to do this:

1. Download the Special Information Tone (SIT) for "Intercept" from Wikipedia at this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special_information_tone

2. Re-record my outgoing answering machine message to include the "da - da - dee" tone immediately after answering, followed by a normal voice message.

The automated equipment will immediately detect the "number disconnected" (Intercept) tones and will disconnect and remove the number from their calling list because they will think it's disconnected and don't want to waste the time and money calling it again.

Actual people will take a second to realize what's going on, but will hear your voice message before hanging up.

He said it's worked pretty well for him over the years, you just need to start letting the machine answer all calls, then pick up the phone if it's someone you know.

I'm going to try it and see if it helps.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:14 PM

25. Get "Phone Tray Free"

You'll need a computer with a dial modem (used only to harvest the Caller ID information, not make calls) that stays on most of the time. You then set Phone Tray Free to automatically hang up on calls from numbers you blacklist.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:23 PM

28. When we were getting calls from 800 numbers

I would pick up the handset and say "Hello, is Steve there?" It would confuse the heck out of them. They might say, "What, what are you talking about" and I'd repeat, "Is Steve there, I'm calling for Steve". They usually hung up after that. It was just my way of messing with them.

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Response to Jenoch (Reply #28)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 03:37 PM

36. Hahahahah!!!

Good one!

I've always wanted to play "senile old person" on them, but not sure I could get through it without laughing.

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Response to Jenoch (Reply #28)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:01 PM

51. I like that.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:36 PM

29. Caller ID is great

I don't pick up unless the caller is identified and I know who it is. It's taken a couple of years, but the number of junk calls has decreased markedly. Or maybe it's just the pervs who have been discouraged.

I kind of miss the pervs. I used to make them sick enough to hang up on me.

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Response to Warpy (Reply #29)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 03:39 PM

37. I only had

one perv call.

Unfortunately, the fun only lasted a little while, because I couldn't keep myself from choking with laughter and he hung up on me.



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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 02:40 PM

30. Those lower your interest scammers don't care about the list.

collection agencies don't care either, they're just calling the number given with that account, even if it's no longer used by that person.

The scammers don't care about breaking the law, since they're already breaking the law to start with.

I'll give you a hint, those calls don't just hit the landline numbers.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 03:01 PM

33. If you do not give that number to anyone YOU want to hear from, just turn the volume OFF

and do not set up a mailbox..with the ringer turned OFF you will not hear the phone ringing, and if no one you want to talk to has the number, just delete the caller ID list from time to time if you want to see who is calling you..

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 03:35 PM

35. These simple words when you answer make them take your number out of the database very fast

"911, do you need police, fire or medical"

Every 911 call center also has regular numbers some ring in on separate lines and some come in on the same lines as the 911 lines do. So autodialing random numbers will get real 911 PSAP centers sometimes.


If it is I number I know is spam, I answer like that.

If it is a number I don't know and I am fast enough to Google to see it is a spam call before they give up, I answer like that.

The stammering and apologies on the other end are great. And they ALWAYS get me out of the database.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 03:50 PM

40. the 'do not call' thingy is a farce.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 03:53 PM

41. A couple of things.

Screen your calls with recorded messages. I had a service that would put the name and number of a caller on my TV when I was getting a call. I could pick up the calls I wanted and ignore the telemarketers. It never stopped them from calling though. I was also on the don't call list. That never stopped them. I think they used the don't call list as people to call. It's sort of like the old no solicitors signs back in the day only encouraged the door to door salesmen to solicit anyway. So I finally had my land line disconnected and now just use my cell phone.

I have only given my number out to people I want to call me and I have a different ring for each caller. The rest is on a separate ring and when I get those I don't answer but force them to use the voice mail. Today though most people just text, even the telemarketers so it's just as easy to delete them.

The only thing I worry about is emergencies, like in my area earthquakes, then the land lines are usually the last to go and the first repaired. The cell phone towers go pretty quickly. So you will need to think about it very carefully and if you have a good support system of neighbors, you may not need a land line again. I do believe the phone companies are looking to get rid of land lines altogether in the future.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 05:31 PM

45. My father gets tired of telemarketing calls where

they have a script and are trying to sell him something. However, when he gets a wrong number call, he'll start talking to them and sometimes he has a ten minute conversation with a complete stranger. I'm sure the person on the other end has a smile on their face after the call and is telling their family, friends, and co-workers about the goofy old man they talked to on the telephone.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 06:42 PM

48. Call block apps for those who have smartphones

I have MetroPCS and their own app, Metro Block-it works wonders. If you get an Android or Iphone call block app, be sure you get one of the paid apps or else you'll be bombarded with ads.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 06:58 PM

49. I haven't had a land-line phone in years.

I'd say if I was forced to use one for an alarm system, I would have only the alarm system hooked up to it. I wouldn't even have an actual phone hooked to it.

Aside from what you've already done - Do Not Call list & such, I'd suggest getting a phone that can block calls from blacklisted or unknown numbers. That's one of the perks of going wireless and using a smartphone (that and it's illegal for telemarketers to target cell phones.)

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:06 PM

53. The classic response -

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:25 PM

56. A landline phone with callblock function helps for the repeaters.

This Panasonic phone with callblock is good, but unfortunately limits the number of blocked numbers to 30. That took less than a year fill up here, so we occasionally have to delete old ones to make room for the new.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:26 PM

57. If you have time, it's fun to fuck with them

Turn the conversation around on them by asking them questions that have no relation to what they called about. Like how the weather is were they are, how many people work in their office, are they happy with their job, how much they get paid, anything, just keep them from giving you their spiel. It's been a real challenge to me to try and piss them off.

I once kept "Dave Johnson" ( a fake name since he was obviously calling from India about my "Microsoft computer" - btw, I don't have one) on the line for about ten minutes before he told me to go fuck myself and hung up.

They may be starting to catch on, I haven't gotten a "Microsoft computer" call for six months. I'm still getting the "lower your interest rate" robotic calls because I never stay on the phone long enough to speak to a real person.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:36 PM

59. Poisoning landlines to the point where they're useless

And that's just peachy with the big telephone companies, who desperately want to get out of the fading business, what with all of its Universal Service mandates and what-have-you. They'd much rather just sell everyone more pricey cell plans, and if you're too far out in the sticks to be near a cell tower, well, then, sucks to be you and no phone for you ... which, again, would be just peachy with them.

The telcos could put a serious dent in spam calls if they wanted to. One small provider, Sonic.net, now offers automatic spam call blocking:
https://wiki.sonic.net/wiki/Spam_Call_Blocking
When Spam Call Blocking is enabled on a Fusion Voice line all calls from a hand maintained and reviewed list of telephone numbers that have engaged in abusive or fraudulent calls are blocked. All Fusion Voice customers are subscribed to it by default and may opt out by disabling the option "Spam Call Blocking" in the Voice Options Membertool. A blocked calling party will receive a standard "We're sorry, the number cannot be completed as dialed" error message.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 07:54 PM

60. both my land line and my cell are

on the "do not call list". my cell is with verizon and i was able to put block 5 numbers which i did -- they were from telemarketers and the bullshit lower your interest rate one. they come in from all different area codes and when you call the number back most are not available. for another $4.99 a month i can block 20 numbers.

as far as my land line before it rings they get a recording saying "this person does not take calls from telemarketers, etc." if it's a robo call they don't understand it and i'll get part of the message. i also take my phone off the receiver in the morning. i'm a late sleeper (retired) and i'm on pacific time. some of these people don't care about waking you up. i feel sorry for those who work nights and have to sleep in the daytime.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 08:53 PM

61. My son answering the phone stops them cold.

He does an immitation of Manuel from Fawlty Towers. "I speakie English... I learrrrn it frrrrrrom a boooooook!"

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 10:40 PM

62. i noticed most of you are talking about land lines.

i get them on my cell phone too. see my response #60.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sat Aug 10, 2013, 11:09 PM

63. get an "access-only" line for your alarm system. mine

Costs $22/mo. No incoming or outgoing calls. Have your monitoring company call your cell if alarm goes off.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sun Aug 11, 2013, 12:19 AM

66. The majority of cold-callers these days are criminals, so the DNC lists don't work on them.

I'm on a number of do-not-call lists and still get 20-30 a day on the landline. At this point I only answer numbers I recognize or which are in my area code, since all the other incoming ones are phishing scams.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sun Aug 11, 2013, 05:03 PM

67. Thanks to everyone for your suggestions

I'm going to try what I wrote in post #24 and see if that helps any.

If I had anyone in Congress who cared about people, I would suggest they beef up the current laws regarding telemarketing, but I don't (two Repukes) so I know that won't do any good.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sun Aug 11, 2013, 05:21 PM

68. My cell phone is my old land line number

so I get a lot of junk calls. I just look at the number and if it's its some funky number I just ignore and don't answer. People who really want me will leave a message. I don't want to use up my cell phone minutes on junk calls so I just don't pick up. And that cell phone has a reject list and I use it.

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Response to AndyA (Original post)

Sun Aug 11, 2013, 06:06 PM

69. Contact your phone company and see if you have number blocking

I just found out last week that I can block numbers. Right after the call I hit #01# and that number will be blocked. They use lots of different numbers so it takes a few days.

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