Telemarketer Sells Anti-Telemarketing Service

June 9th, 2008 by Mr. Fanrastic

I just got a call from one of Bell Canada’s hired guns (Alliance something-or-other) to “save me some money” on my home phone package. The call went something like this:

“I see here that you have an older plan and are paying $34.50 per month before taxes. I think we can save you some money by switching you to a new package.”

“Okay…”

“We can set you up with a plan that will give you one more feature than you have currently, for $37.50 per month.”

So you want to save me money by making me pay more money? Right… “Yeah, I’m not interested.”

He persisted. “How many nuisance calls would you say you receive in a week?”

“Oh, I don’t know… maybe three to five.”

“And how do you normally deal with them?”

“Well I’ll tell them to take me off their list. Or, if it’s a fax and they haven’t blocked their number, I’ll phone them back until I get through and then leave the phone off the hook to tie up their dialer so they can’t spam anyone for a while.” The genius of this tactic escaped him and he stuck to the script.

“Well, we have a new feature called Call Privacy that will help reduce those nuisance calls.” Wait a sec… Isn’t this technically a nuisance call?

“And how does that work?”

“You get a block list that you can add numbers to. So if you get a nuisance call, you can just add the number to the list.”

“So does that block the number that shows up on the call display, or the actual number they are calling from? ‘Cause a lot of times they just spoof the number…”

“It blocks the number they are calling from.” That’s right, stick to the script. “Also, you can set it up so that they will hear a recording and have to press the # button to be connected to you, which will block the auto-dialers since they don’t have a # button to press.” My brain reeled at the sheer stupidity of the statement.

“Well it’s just a dialer. It could “press” the # button the same way it dialed the number.”

“It’s a dialing machine, and the telemarketers don’t have the # button to press.” O… M… G…

“But it’s just a DTMF tone that any dialer could generate. It’s not difficult to program that into the system…”

Back to the script. “I can go ahead and switch you over to the new package right now.”

“Uh, no, I’m not interested. Bye.”

So there you have it. A telemarketer trying to save me a negative amount of money by failing to sell me a service to block telemarketers who don’t have # buttons to press. Fuck, I need a drink.

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3 Responses

  1. Johnny

    You have to be more proactive to get rid of those mofos! Here’s a great resource:
    http://www.crtc.gc.ca/eng/info_sht/t22.htm

    When asking to be placed on the do-not-call list, make sure you specify that you want off all subsidiary and client lists. Number 1 rule: be polite, or else they’ll get bitter and try to screw you over.

    The good news: apparently the government is working on a national do-not-call list. It should be ready by about 2029, by which time the telephone will be long-gone.

  2. Bob

    Why didn’t you ask if it would work on them?

  3. Mr. Fanrastic

    I only thought of that after the fact. I guess I was too baffled by his bullshit at the time.

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