My Telephone

With email, instant messaging, and blog traffic, the telephone is quickly becoming a less desirable means of staying in touch. At least that is the case in this household.

Even though we have opted to stop telemarketers we still get calls from people asking for money. People we don’t even know. They claim to be collecting for charity which is still allowed by law, but I consider that telemarketing even though they are not selling anything.

I consider it the ultimate insult to have a stranger call me on my phone trying to scam me out of my money, and I usually respond accordingly. Once I asked a telemarketer, ‘If it is such a good deal why do you have to bother people at home to sell it?’ The line went silent for many moments as they searched for a comeback.

Anymore we do not respond at all. If a call comes in, we let the answering machine take it. All callers to the machine are politely asked to leave a message. Some do. Some don’t. We do not care. We enjoy a quiet evening of reflection with the ringer turned off.

Least you think us callous, we do not have to care. It is just the two of us. The kids have grown up and moved out long ago. Most of our relatives live in other cities. The most economical means of communication is email for those who have computers.

I think we would be able to return more calls if we suggested they leave a message that would make us want to call them back.

A message like ‘This is (someone I have never heard of), please return my call. My number is (blah, blah, and more blah)’, is certain to get erased.

We do not return calls to people we do not know unless they give us good reason to do so. Even then we are reluctant to return such calls unless they have stated the nature of their call.

Generally, if it is a message from someone we do not know, we don’t call back. We do not conduct business on the phone anymore. It is far too easy for an unknown caller to pretend to be something they are not. Especially when they initiate the call. That is something we are keenly aware of particularly when they start asking for personal information.

Calls from unknown people are always unwanted. They are the equivalent of spam in email and have no business being answered.
The people who make such calls are abusing an otherwise useful service.

I can understand someone in sales prospecting for customers by calling commercial phone numbers of prospective companies. There is never an excuse to call a private phone number of a person you do not know assuming he wants to talk to an intrusive nobody.

Explore posts in the same categories: DeepThoughts

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