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Australian Do Not Call Register 252

green-e writes "Looks like us Aussies are finally introducing a national 'Do Not Call' register. Under the plan all telemarketers would be banned from calling homes after 8pm on weekdays and 5pm on weekends. Companies that call a household on the register could face fines of up to $220,000 (AU), which could be legislated early next year. About time something like this should be set up. How effective has it been in the US ?"
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Australian Do Not Call Register

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  • by AbRASiON ( 589899 ) * on Monday October 31, 2005 @04:46AM (#13913409) Journal
    It's about time.

    This is awesome and I hope it's enforced thoroughly.
    Sure it's going to cost some people some jobs - but lately the calls have been coming from other countries anyhow.

    Marketing is invasive enough as it is, my number at home is not to be called for any old reason - this is just plain RUDE, 30 years ago you wouldn't dream of this crap happening.
    • by ankarbass ( 882629 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @05:05AM (#13913469)
      I'm not on the american register. But, I've noticed several things.

      1) There ARE fewer calls. Fewer companies seem to be willing to risk the fines or pay for the lists.

      2) Companies seem to love to play the "We have a relationship" card much more than they used to. They go out of their way to make sure I know that.

      3) Those that call are much more aggressive. They are using automatic systems to make calls more and more. I seldom get a person directly on the other end. Even though I only get a few calls a month, it is for this and other reasons that I'm ditching my landline and going to voip only.

      With voip it is both easy to have multiple phone numbers that can be changed quickly. Further it's much easier to filter by caller id and completely control how each call is handled. f you don't know the secret personal number which I can change at the drop of a hat, you won't get to talk directly to me ever. I have separate permanent numbers for places I do business with so that they will ALWAYS have to leave a message. Those numbers can take ALL the junk calls they want to dish out because they will NEVER ring a phone in my house. Only my personal voip numbers ring a phone and only if your number hasn't been blacklisted.

      Voip is to phones what email is to postal mail. Your physical address no longer has any meaning and it's easy to set it up so that you control what is coming and going based on how available you want to be.
      • by dotwaffle ( 610149 ) <slashdot AT walster DOT org> on Monday October 31, 2005 @05:25AM (#13913515) Homepage
        Maybe it's just me - but I'm really scared by VoIP. Don't get me wrong, I think it's great, and Asterisk is an amazing tool, but if I can set it up, so can Mr. 419-Nigeria-Scam, so can Mr. Viagra-automated-selling-tool. I can see a time when my phone is going to ring every 30 seconds, and it's going to be a marketer from a foreign country who does not recognise the UK's Telephone Preference Scheme.

        I can see trouble ahead.
      • Companies seem to love to play the "We have a relationship" card much more than they used to.

        That gets them off the hook for the first call. Once you tell them never to call you again, they're in trouble if they persist.

        • I can attest to that. I *never* get telemarketing calls anymore, since the do-not-call list went
          into effect and I have since consistently told everyone whose calls are unwelcome never to call

          I'm sorry for Australia, in that they will still get just as many telemarketing phone calls as
          before. The 8pm cut-off makes the whole thing into a sorry joke at the public expense.

          But then, you deserve it, for attacking Iraq.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      It's also a lot worse in Australia than here. I visited friends in Australia in Feb 2004, and spent time staying at three separate houses the weeks I was there. It wasn't unusual to get 10 to 15 calls every night, weekend included.

      At least my hosts had the sense not to spend much time on these people, happily shouting a big FUCK OFF down the phone before hanging up and getting back to life.

      Australians are a lot more dependent on land lines too, than here. I know many people in CA who don't have a land line
    • by tpgp ( 48001 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @05:39AM (#13913552) Homepage
      Well, as an Australian I can honestly say that this will be useless.

      From TFA:

      Market research companies, pollsters, charities and religious organisations are likely to be exempted.

      Riiiiiiggght.... Market resarch companies on the list of exempted organisations?

      I'm also quite sure that Politicians will be exempt from this.

      And quite frankly - the one person I do not want spamming [theage.com.au] me is John Howard [theage.com.au] (lying Australian Prime minister)

      This is the phone message he left on many peoples phones prior to the last election:

      JOHN HOWARD (phone message): Hello, I'm John Howard. I've taken the unusual step of contacting you with this recorded message to let you know we have recently announced what our first seven tasks will be if re-elected to office. So on Saturday, I ask you vote for your local Liberal member Peter Lindsay. This is John Howard. Thank you for your time.

      Think about it - will you trust a do-not-call register from a goverment with a prime minister willing to make marketing calls and send email spam through his son's company? [smh.com.au]
      • by DingerX ( 847589 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @05:56AM (#13913592) Journal
        Yes, in the US, I was on the Do-not-call list, and it did kill a lot of the calls I was getting. For a while. Then election season rolled around and I got call after call from these robo-dialing get-out-the-vote thing. Excuse me? You don't even have the courtesy to pay someone to interrupt my day, and you want me to VOTE for your sorry ass? What kind of a mandate are you looking for? "A vote for me is a vote for more automated government intrusions on your personal life!"

        Then someone figured out that "market research" can also be used for marketing purposes. So the calls started coming back:

        Sir, I'm doing a market survey. What do you think of the [em]Gazette[/em]'s new layout and extensive sports coverage?

        The real solution is burn your phone.
        • Yes, in the US, I was on the Do-not-call list, and it did kill a lot of the calls I was getting.

          The do-not-call list has killed every call that I was getting. I didn't have my landline during the last big election -- but my girlfriend only got three calls during the entire election season -- and she is a registered voter. I'd hardly call three calls in four months annoying -- but that could have to do with the fact that we aren't a battleground state.

          In any case, I don't think there would even be a ne

      • Also it is only for certain hours, they can still call you during the 5:30 - 7:30 time slot when most people are home for dinner. Having once worked a 5yr stint on night shift I know unsolicited calls and door knockers are a pain in the arse. I had a routine that went like this...

        Knock, KnoWooof, wooof,wooofock,wooKffGRRRRRRbark,yapyap,,,,KnHooo o wwwl..SIT!
        I stomp to front door in my jocks and fling it open looking like the angry love child of Einstien and a 220lb Gorrila...
        Me: "What?"
        Door knocker:
        • The do not call list here in the U.S. has worked very well. Prior to the list the phone would ring all the time. Now it is very rare that that a solicitor calls. And those that do seem to not know about the do not call list. They get kind of nervous when you explain it to them. Of course prior to explaining it to them get their names, company names, and a contact number. That makes it much easier to report them on the web site for the do not call list.

          Of course now that they don't call anymore I ca
    • by minorproblem ( 891991 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @06:24AM (#13913662)
      I ussually just start talking in swedish and they go away pretty quickly, works with those hobos who ask for money also.
    • You want to know how effective the Anti-Telemarketing has been?

      My household: No phone calls EXCEPT for charities (Police, fire dept, etc). No paper mail except for police, barnard fire dept ball, very rarely a couple of realtors (and those I call up immediately and chew out for sending me stuff).

      My father-in-law's: Phone calls on Friday night at dinner for the last 4 weeks that I've been there, random calls during the day, etc. While he's more established than I am in terms of having lived at that house,
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 31, 2005 @04:47AM (#13913411)
    ... why not a complete ban on those annoying calls all day?
    • It's a bit of a misnomer. Perhaps we might rename it: the national "Only Call Sometimes" register.

      As someone that works out of his house, this doesn't help eliminate the interruptions I get during the day.

      • Personally, I think it should be after 6 pm or so, so that I can eat dinner in peace when I'm home. I mean, what idiot telemarkets in the middle of the night? That's just commonsense. If someone wakes me up with a "courtesy call", I'm not buying their product, unless it is a spaceship that is cheaper than my car ($4600 US). And if that happened, I'd pinch myself and wake up.
  • The only telemarketers I've got ringing up round here are people we're already with. It's very tempting to cancel our service with them as a result. Then again, we have an unlisted number so I guess that must be the reason. I always figured it wasn't a problem in Australia.
    • The only telemarketers I've got ringing up round here are people we're already with. It's very tempting to cancel our service with them as a result. Then again, we have an unlisted number so I guess that must be the reason. I always figured it wasn't a problem in Australia.

      I also have a silent number and I was puzzled with all these complaints I have been seeing on current affairs type shows. Because I also never receive telemarketing calls.
      • Re:Telemarketers? (Score:3, Informative)

        by strider44 ( 650833 )
        It depends where you live. I moved down from the Blue Mountains, where we got almost no telemarketers (occasionally charities that our family has donated to would ring up, a great thank you from them definitely) to South Sydney where it's a huge hassle with telemarketers ringing every day!
        • South Sydney where it's a huge hassle with telemarketers ringing every day!

          Wow. Do you have a silent number?

          I live in South Sydney too (karn the Bunnies!) and as I've said, never get called. This number has been silent for a LOOONG time though.
    • If you are from Oz, DO NOT put your phone number on raffle tickets, particularly the arthritis and diabeties ones (sad that I have to say that, but both are very pushy once they know who you are).
  • $220000? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Biogenesis ( 670772 ) <overclocker.bren ... optushome.com.au> on Monday October 31, 2005 @04:49AM (#13913418) Homepage
    What's up with the fine amount? $200k + GST?
    • Re:$220000? (Score:5, Informative)

      by benk ( 93688 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @05:32AM (#13913540)
      It's likely that the fine is expressed in "Penalty Units", the value of which is currently $110. (see http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/ ca191482/s4aa.html [austlii.edu.au])

      The theory is that Parliament just sets a penalty for each statutory contravention in Penalty Units according to its perceived seriousness, and can update them all automatically eg to account for inflation by amending a single section of a single piece of legislation (the Crimes Act) rather than every section imposing a penalty (which would be a nightmare). It's quite elegant for the legal profession.

      It's likely that there will be a maximum penalty of 2000 Penalty Units for the contravention, which today = $220k, and in future may rise.

      What's interesting is that some Acts I have dealt impose penalties in the range of 1 to 30 Penalty Units, so this is quite a big fine, relatively speaking. disclaimer - i'm a lawyer but i'm not your lawyer and this is not legal advice. don't rely on it!

      • This is slashdot. Please simplify your explanation for us in terms of variables. Vis:

        root@laws> cat law_x
        $PENALTY_UNIT = 110;

        root@laws> cat law_y
        include 'law_x';
        $penalty_for_crime = 2000 * $PENALTY_UNIT;

        (At a later date...)

        root@laws> vi law_x
        root@laws> cat law_x
        $PENALTY_UNIT = <something else>;

    • by Zouden ( 232738 )
      Yes it is because of GST:
      $220,000 = 2,000 penalty units, each PU being $110.
      The cost of a PU went up from $100 to $110 with the introduction of the 10% GST, although it gets updated every few years anyway.
  • Aussies, be careful (Score:3, Interesting)

    by WindBourne ( 631190 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @04:49AM (#13913420) Journal
    I registered for the one in Colorado (the original). I have had no problems (except that I am called all the time by the republican party even though I am a registered libertarian). IIRC, I did not register with the federal one.

    But I know of several people that did register with the federal and gets called all the time by everyone (oddly enough, they are now afraid to register in the Colorado one). For all purpose, the federal DB has been a way to get a name, an address, and a number; IOW, the marketers wet dream.
    • I'll agree with Emeye. Since registering in Mo., I haven't been bothered by anyone.
    • Wouldn't a do not call list be something that runs counter to liberitarianism?

      (No flame, no troll - honest question.)
      • Your rights stop at my nose. You do not have the right to invade my private property. A do not call list is a nice way to say "leave me alone".
        • But if calling your house is 'invading your property,' and I don't have the right to do so, aren't you implying that nobody has the right to telephone you without your express permission?

          I always thought that willy-nilly, made-because-folks-like-it-and-not-because-it's-ra tionally-defensible type laws (like do not call lists) were the exactly kind of thing that Liberitarianism is opposed to.
          • Actually, if you want to go down this path, the libertarian's belief would allow us to sue companies that call us when I have taken great lengths to hide my number (that is, we hold the company responsible for their use of my info). I have paid Qwest money to keep my number private. Likewise, I give out my e-mail and address very sparingly. So if they got it and use it, then I want to know from where, and I should have the right to sue for that, as well as put in a cease-and-desist order. But under republic
  • Indeed. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ionicplasma ( 820891 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @04:49AM (#13913421) Homepage
    I've had enough of calls from Indian call-centre workers saying they're in Melbourne. It's great when you ask them how the weather is there, and they say the complete opposite of what it acutally is.

    It's about time something like this was put in place. But will it work.
  • by frovingslosh ( 582462 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @04:52AM (#13913426)
    How effective has it been in the US ?

    It has been pretty effective. Telemarketing calls were coming in hot and heavy right up to the last day, then stopped completely the day the ban went into effect. (Our ban is complete, not just an after-hours ban, as long as there is no business ralationship with the caller.) But since then a few telemarketers have figured thay can get away with breaking the law as long as they keep a low profile. I now get perhaps a call a month that is in clear violation of the law. I report these to my state's Atournet General office, but I've never heard of anything being done about them and over all we have only heard of one or two sucessful prosecutions they have done against anyone breaking this law. So it has helped a lot, but it's not perfect and I would like to see even more teeth in it.

    • frovingslosh has a good point. I probably has been very effective for me since I am very careful about giving out my personal information. Anything that creates a "relationship" with a business or documents that give them permission to have 3rd parties contact me would blow it.

      So I avoid:
      - Prize give away forms
      - Pretty much any freebee that requests name, number &/or address
      - I make sure when my banks or credit companies send out requests to share my information to 3rd parties, I clearly reply back wi
  • In Sweden (Score:4, Informative)

    by gagge ( 808932 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @04:54AM (#13913431)
    We've had this in Sweden for some years, a register called "NIX" (which means something like "nope").
    I think it works pretty well but not 100%. It's really easy to sign up, just call a number, enter your home phone number and confirm.
  • Works in the UK too (Score:5, Informative)

    by irw ( 204684 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @04:58AM (#13913442)
    Nobody asked, but...

    I stayed off the do not call list in the UK ("telephone preference service") for a while, used to average one call per day. Im not getting any since joining, though it took a month or two to settle down.

    Like the US, it's a complete ban unless they already have a business relationship with you.
  • No phone, no problem (Score:4, Interesting)

    by JanneM ( 7445 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @05:01AM (#13913454) Homepage
    I haven't had a landline for two years. I have a mobile phone with silent ring if it's someone not in the addressbook, and Skype with contact disabled if not approved by me. No telemarketing or nuisance calls whatsoever.

    • Yeah, that's the thing that bugs me about landline phones. Despite how popular they still are there's been very little innovation over the last decade or so. You'd think landline phones would have integrated capabilities such as those you describe for Skype (e.g. - disable ring if phone number isn't in address book, and especially disable ring if caller ID has been disabled by the remote caller). It seems landline phone vendors are more interested in selling you 2.4 GHz or 5.8 GHz (or whatever frequency "te
      • I think the problem is that, after decades of state-sanctioned monopolies, the land line providers aren't used to competition and aren't quite sure how to handle this shiny new phenomenon. I get the impression that they're just now catching on to the fact that they really do have competitors, and that those competitors are way ahead of them.
    • But what if someone you know calls you from a foreign phone? And what if that call were urgent, for example?
      • They can leave voicemail. Despite what people think most don't have to be in contact 24/7, humanity did fine without phones for several millenia. You really want to amaze people? When your cell phone rings look at it and hit the hang up button to send them to voicemail and say "I'll get that later when we're done, right now I'm with you."
        • by jasgo ( 679531 )
          You really want to amaze people? When your cell phone rings look at it and hit the hang up button to send them to voicemail and say "I'll get that later when we're done, right now I'm with you."

          ... is it really that unusual to do that? I do it all the time, as do many people I know.

    • Well, since I moved to a cave on the southern slopes of Mt. Kosciusko *I* haven't had a call or asingle visitor in 3 months! It's a long hike to the nearest internet cafe to post to slashdot, but well worth it! :-) and best of all, no more personal grooming for me!!
  • by mattjb0010 ( 724744 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @05:03AM (#13913461) Homepage
    • Ah, that's gold. You can also just put the phone down quietly and walk away if you get one of those "keep right on talking so the 'customer' doesn't have a chance to say no" calls.

      I've considered the following option too, but since moving away from a nice water-front address, I get less calls of this kind. Oh, and because I don't have a landline now. That's a factor too. (Or home web access.) You just get so much *life* back...

      Them: "HiI'mcallingonbehalfofcompanyx Wehaveafantasticopportunityforblabhblah
    • Re:Just use this (Score:3, Interesting)

      by alwsn ( 593349 )
      And even better way to handle telemarketers.

      1) When the call you, make sure tell you their name and who they are calling on behalf of.

      2) After they tell you this information, politely say. "I'm not interested. Please don't call me again at this number. Thank you" and hang up.

      This will accomplish two things. One, since they have said their name and who they are calling for, it is officially a 'contact'. If you just hang up on the person as soon as they say "Hey, this is Bill, can I talk to (your na
      • by drsmithy ( 35869 ) <drsmithy@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Monday October 31, 2005 @06:43AM (#13913714)
        Telemarketing is a shitty job that no one really wants to do. I did it when I was in college because I needed the cash. Did I go whistling to work just hoping I could annoy some people at home? No.

        Mate, that's pretty desparate for cash. Why didn't you choose something relatively respectable, like drug pusher or illegal immigrant sweatshop overseer ?

      • by antic ( 29198 )

        If they're trying to give you a free offer, insist on paying for it. Say that you like paying for things and that you've got two months to live and a friend challenged you to spend all of your money before you die.

        It's usually an intro to a funny conversation and a very excited telemarketer!

      • Re:Just use this (Score:3, Insightful)

        by jcr ( 53032 )
        politely say. "I'm not interested. Please don't call me again at this number. Thank you" and hang up.

        Why politely? They still have to put you on the do-not-call list if you say "put me on your do not call list for all customers, right fucking now, you greasy little motherfucker", which is not only more satisfying, it also helps to make the caller's job less tolerable.

        Telemarketing is a shitty job that no one really wants to do.

        Ah, but that's precisely why it's important to heap abuse upon telemarketers.
        • "politely say. 'I'm not interested. Please don't call me again at this number. Thank you' and hang up.

          Why politely? They still have to put you on the do-not-call list if you say 'put me on your do not call list for all customers, right fucking now, you greasy little motherfucker', which is not only more satisfying, it also helps to make the caller's job less tolerable."

          It's good to be polite, because the frustrated, struggling and overstressed telemarketer may happen to "forget" to place someone on their DN
          • It's good to be polite, because the frustrated, struggling and overstressed telemarketer may happen to "forget" to place someone on their DNC list if they're an asshole. I did collections for a while until better work appeared, and saw that happen on more than one occasion.

            If they fail to put you on thier do not call list there are specific penalties that can be applied to the company so be sure to record the name of the company in a ledger of each of the greasy little motherfuckers who call you.
          • Because the state attorney general responsible for enforcing my state's do not call list, which I'm on in addition to the federal one, won't "forget" to fine your ass if you fail to put me on the list.
  • by strider44 ( 650833 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @05:04AM (#13913466)
    (Ring up someone you really hate at midnight sunday night)

    *Ring Ring*

    Hi, I'm from Microsoft. Have you heard about the exciting new things Windows now has to offer your business or home?
  • by puke76 ( 775195 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @05:24AM (#13913511) Homepage
    Meanwhile in the UK, the Trading Standards Institute is extending physical "no cold calling zones" [bbc.co.uk].
    Let's face it, if I want to buy something, I'll do it online or go out and get it. I'm not waiting for someone to come to me with a stack of encyclopedias.. or call me with an amazing offer whilst I'm halfway through my dinner..
    • I'd never give any information (personal, credit, or otherwise) to ANYONE who calls me. If my bank calls me and tells me there is a problem, I will tell them that in order to verify that this is a legitimate call, I will call the bank's customer service number, then ask for instructions on how to reach that person again. More than half the time, they just hang up.

      Like I tell everyone in my family, never never never (did I say never?) NEVER give your information to anyone who calls you, especially if the cal
  • I live in Sweden, and we have a system like this too. It works reasonably well, although you still get these calls if you have some sort of relationship with them, which they rarely hesitate to abuse. Let's say you're an ISP customer. You'll now get calls about their new phone deals every half a year or so as they expand into the Internet phone market. Or about TV channels as they expand into Internet TV.
  • Interesting ... (Score:2, Interesting)

    I don't get that many calls now, and I don't think I will sign up for this. It is just another place for your phone number. I just hang up if I am annoyed.

    The way it works is if you are on the no call list, you can't be called at all. Else you can only be called during the day. It also applies to call centres outside Australia if an Australian company has contracted the call centre.

    (It is also ironic that the US flag is under the Slashdot whilst talking about Australia. We are after all the 53rd state
    • Else you can only be called during the day.

      My wife works from home, and she gets a lot of these calls during the day. I suppose the point is that large companies only have the reception desk listed in the book, so they get the junk calls. Small businesses get the full brunt of it.

      Perhaps it is worse to get these calls at night, but it is pretty bad getting them during the day.

      ironic that the US flag is under the Slashdot whilst talking about Australia.

      Perhaps they should have an Australia icon under the

    • (It is also ironic that the US flag is under the Slashdot whilst talking about Australia. We are after all the 53rd state (after the UK and Canada).)

      Amused point taken, though in reality I think it's just the generic "politics" theme.
  • ... keep an airhorn near the phone.

    I've tried being polite. I've tried being curt. I've tried being downright fucking rude, and it still didn't put the bastards off disturbing me in my domocile for no good reason.
    • by meringuoid ( 568297 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @08:24AM (#13914031)
      ... keep an airhorn near the phone.

      That I like, but we could do better.

      I'm thinking it maybe wouldn't be too difficult to hack together a system to sit between your phone and the socket which would do nothing but play a really loud noise onto the phone line at the press of a button.

      You might even have a menu to choose from. Let's see, how shall I interrupt the telemarketer's script this time? 'Airhorn, v loud' - good. 'White Noise' - nice, might make them think their system's broken. 'Beep, Sinusoidal, Annoyingly High Pitch' - a possibility. 'Baby Crying' - cruel! 'Barney Theme Song' - perhaps excessively sadistic. 'Fingernail On Blackboard Noise' - they don't deserve that yet. No, I think this telemarketer gets the 'Burst of Incomprehensible Dialogue From Puni Puni Poemy'. * click *

      And having built it, post a webpage and submit to /. so we can all applaud.

  • by spywhere ( 824072 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @06:23AM (#13913657)
    The law in the US has helped, but there are still telemarketers of one type or another.

    I work from home, and use my cell as the business phone. Our POTS [wikipedia.org] line gets five or six calls a week, even with the law and Anonymous Call Rejection... but at least ACR means that I have a phone number displayed for those that do get through.
    Some are companies we deal with, but I tell them to put us on their Do Not Call list immediately or lose our business. (I 'threatened' the NRA: I explained that I would donate $100 to the Democratic National Committee for each subsequent call... alas, there were no more calls).
    Some claim exemption from the law, saying they don't have a Do Not Call list. I reply that they'd better start one, because I will charge them with harrassment and criminal tresspass in Delaware if they ring my phone again, and did I mention that my wife is a lawyer? (They never call again).

    Most important is to take a polite but aggressive approach as soon as you answer the phone, controlling the call (and therefore the caller):
    Hello, this is Tina from AMC and I...
    Tina? What's your full name, Tina?
    Tina Brown...
    Thank you, Ms. Brown. I am required by Federal law to inform you that this call is being recorded. And what do the letters "A M C" stand for, Ms. Brown?
    Uh, the Annoying Marketing Council...
    And where is the Annoying Marketing Council located, Ms. Brown?
    In Walla Walla, Washington, but I...
    And what is the phone number of the Annoying Marketing Council, Ms. Brown?
    Sir, I am not permitted to...
    Actually, Ms. Brown, Federal law requires you to provide that information.
    Okay, it's 215-555-4242...
    Ms. Brown, the reason I've asked for this information is to put your company in my [imaginary] Telemarketer Database, and now I need you to put this number on your Do Not Call list, effective immediately.
    I can do that, sir, but it takes up to 30 days to be removed from our list...
    Actually, Ms. Brown, you will need to make sure it happens immediately. If I am called again by the AMC -- even if it's five minutes from now -- I will immediately file civil and/or criminal complaints against the Annoying Marketing Council, and against you personally.
    Sir, I should let you speak to my supervisor...
    No, Ms. Brown, Federal law requires that you, the caller, handle this. I need to go. Rest assured, if the AMC appears on our caller ID again -- even if we don't answer the call -- you will hear from our attorney... and she's my wife, so she works for free. Goodbye. [click]

    I get no repeat callers.
  • Do you install an automatic line listener to play random audio to them when they stop talking?

    Do you tell them you like the sound of their voice, breathe heavily and fap fap fap fap fap?

    Heck if it *is* a sexy female voice, say in a husky, tense voice "Tell me about how much I can *ugh* SaaaAve on calls again... mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm *breathing*"

    You think with tactics like this they may have their *own* internal do not call list?

    please type the word in this image: blasters
    random letters - if you are visually impai
  • Most of the telemarketing calls I get these days showup as toll-free numbers on Caller ID...

    Some are probably spoofed, but toll-free numbers make sense in that telemarketers could more easily entice people to call back, but not sure if that's really the reason or something else? -probably a combination of reasons?...

    Anyways, a screening method that works like a charm if I choose to pick up the phone, which is rarely, and I see a toll-free number or other goofy number on Caller ID ...

    I'll pickup the receiver
  • USA Experience (Score:4, Interesting)

    by salesgeek ( 263995 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @06:37AM (#13913686) Homepage
    I was doing CRM systems when many US states passed do not call lists. The result was impressive in two ways:

    * The calls at home absolutely stopped after the lists went into effect.

    * You could stop an telemarketer cold with one sentence: I'm on the do not call list.

    * Call centers had to re-invent their business to focus on inbound calls.

    * Companies had to learn that marketing is the stuff that makes the company phone ring.

    * Internet advertising asploded.

  • by cohomology ( 111648 ) on Monday October 31, 2005 @06:53AM (#13913750)
    For the past 10 years, I've gotten *at most* two telemarketing calls per year. How did I do it? I once made a "credible threat to sue" AT&T Wireless. There's an industry wide list of people like me, and they don't call us.

    I learned the technique from a colleague familiar with the industry. First, know your legal rights. Second, keep a hand-written log of occasions when you have asked to be added to the no-call list of a telemarketing firm. Be careful to have them spell out the name of the firm and the city they operate out of. Then wait for them to make a mistake. If they call you again, after the six month grace period the law allows them to update their paperwork, you've got it made.

    Don't shout or be nasty; just read them the log and indicate that you are aware of your legal rights and are interested in collecting the statutory damages. They asked me to "please call this special number to be removed ... " but I just said that I wasn't going to lift a finger to help them. Remember, if it went to court, the case would be decided on "the preponderance of the evidence," and a corporation has no choice but to pay for legal council at trial - they can't represent themselves. Everything is on your side, so they just add you to the list.


    • Of course I got the exact same effect by just using the Do Not Call list, so there's a question of efficiency of methodology here. ;-) And no lawyers made any money my way.
    • I actually almost followed through with that threat. My first year in college, there was this company that was assembling a registry of alumni for my high school. They had an automated system call you up and leave a phone number for you to call them back, and then hand over all your information so they could include it in a registry that they sell (to alumni) and make a profit on. Well, for some reason they decided that they best way to get us to call them back was to call 2x a day every day for 2 months st
  • We've had this kind of register for some time now here in Norway and the same rules apply i.e. telemarketers can't call you unless there is a previous relationship. It works great if you just remember to register everyone in your household of legal age. My existing "relationships" have not been abused and they're not likely to be. The law gives the consumer agency semi-effective means of punishing any offenders (fines/jail time). It's really only the very small, less serious companies that break the law - a
  • OK, I'm a number cruncher for a medium size telemarketing firm in Brisbane. This is actually very good news for the telemarketing industry as a whole because it enables us to reduce the 'dead call' rate for our existing list. We purchase list information for the whole of Australia, over 20 million numbers, including mobile phone numbers and faxes. It costs us over $10,000 a month to use this list from our providers, it is a small cost compared to our takings each month from just selling things over the phon
  • We get 5-10 calls a week from the people who will be exempt, so I'll still get the same calls. This is from the same Govt that promised there would NEVER be a GST. From a Prime Minister who said that he would retire 2 years ago. We are get very good at just hanging up the phone.
  • 700 000 employees (Score:2, Informative)

    by tomw576 ( 902251 )
    It says there are 700 000 people employed by the telemarketing industry. We have about 20 million people in Australia, that's around one in 30 people... No wonder I get so many calls.
  • In the last few months the number of calls had been steadily increasing, polite request and angry threats seemed to make no difference. Now these calls go something like this...

    **ring ring**

    Hello, this is Bill from [insert company here]
    Gday Bill
    I'm calling today to offer you [insert crap here]
    Wow Bill, that sounds great. Can you tell me more?
    Well it is a great deal [bla bla bla]
    Actually, the wife and I were discussing something very similar just yesterday - oh, can you hold on for a sec, I just

  • the biggest problem is the proliferation of voice recorded calls that require you to call a number to be removed from their call list. I refuse to return a call to be remove, mostly out of fear of not knowing whether I'll get a hidden charge for the phone call. The downside is that after 9 months of refusing to pick up the phone or reply, every day, 7 days a week, I still get the same stupid message. There are very many recorded calls that dial me, and there's no human on the other side to tell them to p
  • The easy way (Score:2, Informative)

    by jasgo ( 679531 )
    Everyone complains about Telemarketing calls. Thing is, my home gets exactly zero. Ever.

    Why? We've got an unlisted phone number. By paying Telstra whatever it is for the privilege of not having our number in the phone book (go figure) we don't appear in any telemarketers databases, so no annoying phone calls.

    Of course we still get calls at work. We've just set up a special asterisk extension which plays some lovely "hold music" from artists such as Hanson until they hang up. "Can you hold please? I'll just

"Don't worry about people stealing your ideas. If your ideas are any good, you'll have to ram them down people's throats." -- Howard Aiken