Monday, October 5, 2009

Oct 5 - Direct Marketing & Robo Calls

The phone rings, "Brrrrng" (OK, so nobody's phone rings like that anymore, but just go with it). You answer, "Hello?" and you hear nothing. Silence. Dead air. You repeat, "Hello?" and the suddenly the other end wakes up, "Hello. Is Mr. Weesberg there?"

At this point, I sigh or hang up. It is a Telemarketer. They call about everything: my credit card (or cards I don't have); my auto insurance (or how they can save me money over my current carrier); offering to lower the interest rate on my mortgage (I don't have a mortgage)... you get the idea.

Robocalls are just as annoying as a pre-recorded voice begins to spew. These are easy to hang up on. I love when I get a voicemail that's from a Robocall and the message starts in the middle. Although, I do get annoyed at the ones that say "Enter 6 at anytime to have your number removed from our list." No matter how many times you enter 6, nothing seems to happen!

Once I decided to mess with them. I got a call from someone (my commentary will be in italics) and the call went something like this: (oh, by the way, I affected the voice of a 'slow adult' - yes, I know, I'm going to Hell)

Me: Hello?
Telemarketer: "Yes is this Mr. Weesberg" (they always mispronounce it!)
M: Yes.
T: I'd like to talk to you about lowering your mortgage (again, I don't have a mortgage)
M: I like ice cream.
T: Oh, that's great.
M: Do you like ice cream?
T: Yes, but right now I'd like to talk to you about saving money on your mortgage.
M: My favorite flavor is vanilla.
T: That's great
M: What's your favorite flavor.
T: I don't know, but I do know how I can save you money on your mortgage.
M: I like saving money.
T: Well, that's what we're going to try to do, save you money by lowering your mortgage.
M: You know what I'm going to do with the money?
T: (sigh) No
M: I'm going to by an Ice Cream Factory.
T: That's good, but not if we don't talk about lowering your mortgage.
(at this point, I switched to my normal voice)
M: Dude, I don't even have a mortgage. I rent.
(and then, without missing a beat...)
T: Then I guess you won't be buying an Ice Cream Factory. Have a good day.

True story. Now keep in mind, at no time did the Telemarketer ask for my parents or anyone else. This guy was did not care who he was trying to sell to. His sole job was to SELL.

I actually find that completely disgusting and reprehensible. This is how the credit card industry aided in causing people to over-extend themselves. This is how (and why) I still get emails from Nigerian Princes, Serviceman in Iraq (who have liberated some of Saddam's funds), the European Lottery, and a host of other very obvious scams to normally sane people.

These Telemarketing Companies should all be ashamed of themselves.


  1. Get rid of your land line and watch the calls disappear...

    I had a telemarketer call while the police were at my apartment after I was robbed - when I told him what happened and why it wasn't particularly the best time to call, I was amazed at how genuinely sympathetic he suddenly sounded.

    The other alternative is to tell the telemarketer that they have a sexy voice, ask them what they're wearing and when/if they reply tell them you're naked.

  2. That call actually happened while at work. I don't have a landline.

    I love your sexy suggestion!

  3. Very funny story! I think I will start messing with these guys, too.