Telemarketing: Bring Back Capital Punishment Now!
Case study of how the National Do Not Call List is actually a great tool for Companies and Telemarketers to discover your number!Telemarketers are the reason I don't believe in gun control, just to make my appreciation known if you missed the subtle headline.
I'm sure I was one of the first people who had flocked to the National Do Not Call List when it was launched a couple of years back. I had dutifully registered my number, and somehow naively believed in the Big Canadian Government to make good on its promise.
How naive, indeed.
Beginning last month, I started receiving calls from a few 1-800 and 1-866 numbers on my mobile phone. 1-866-616-6010, 1-877-633-1495, 1-855-667-2522 and 1-866-665-5623 being the most persistent (a little Googling and anonymous calls to them suggested those to be the much reviled and despised telemarketing "scum-bags" called Teleperformance/Alliance on behalf of Rogers Cable/American Express, etc, though I can't confirm it - more below).
At first, just a call or two a week. Then the frequency increased as I ignored them (more on that later). Then it grew to up to 6/7 times in a day...! They were now seriously harassing me by incessantly calling me and even leaving empty voice-mail (with ambient sound of people talking in the background) messages when I didn't pick the phone up.
My mobile number is part of a prepaid plan from the Don Corleone of the Canadian Telecom Cartel Scam - Don Rogers - and I am charged money for every call, and for accessing my voice-mail.
Now the first rule of receiving telemarketing calls is, never ever call them back, not even to tell them to remove your number. By calling them back, you are only confirming that your number is a valid number and you actually exist as a person who really receives and entertains the "bottom-feeders of the earth" that telemarketing industry technically is.
So, I called a few numbers from a non-caller-ID VoIP number so that they couldn't trace who I was, and I spoke deliberately with a very heavy accent from my birthplace's end of the woods so even my mother wouldn't be able to tell who it was.
I was expecting something shady. Well, what I discovered was shady alright. At one number, there was a recording that told me that if I had received a call from them, I should know that they were representing Rogers Communications and if I wished to remove my number from their calling list, I should contact Rogers.
To put it mildly, I was fuming because the telemarketing/"telescammers" were not only calling, but also leaving empty voice-mail messages, so I had to dial my voice-mail and delete their "filth" from there (hence costing me money.)
So, I gave Rogers a call. Some poor "agent" who's probably earning minimum wage for dealing with fuming, disrespectfully angry customers like myself told me that my number was already listed in their and their 3rd party Do-not-call-list as part of my "marketing preferences" for my account. However, I was assured that they had "re-inserted" my number twice just in case and it would take up to 30 days for their 3rd party telemarketing/"telescum " company lists to update.
That didn't make any sense because why were they calling me if my number was on do-not-call-list -- both the government's List and Rogers List?
So, just to be extra sure, I checked the status of my number on the National Do Not Call List... only to find that...
MY NUMBER WAS NO LONGER REGISTERED IN THE DO NOT CALL LIST!
I was shocked! As I said earlier, I registered my number the very first day the List was Introduced!!
Needless to say, I re-registered my number and was very disturbed to read the following clause, which appears to have been inserted at the behest of The Cartel of Canadian Telecommunication Scam or some such corporate group (bold emphasis is mine):
In order to register on the National Do Not Call List (DNCL) personal information will be collected, used and disclosed by the National DNCL Operator in order to register, verify and de-register residential, wireless, fax or VoIP telephone number(s) on the National DNCL. The numbers registered by consumers on the National DNCL will be disclosed to telemarketers and clients of telemarketers and other subscribers to the National DNCL to prevent telemarketing calls to those numbers. The numbers may also be disclosed, on a confidential basis, by telemarketers and clients of telemarketers and other subscribers to the National DNCL to another person involved in supplying the subscriber with services to enable compliance with the National DNCL Rules.So much for the Orwellian Do Not Call List being a Privacy Measure!
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A citizen's take on all things Canadian — from Toronto, Ontario.
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