Thursday, August 18, 2005

While I'm on the marketing bandwagon, let me tackle some unsavoury tactics. Let's talk ...telemarketing.

Why do these fools think they have the right to pester you in your home, in your own free time?
Or is it simply a matter of preying on the gullible?

A case in point.

Soon after I arrived here in Holland, someone phoned me from some Lottery company. For a simple x euros a month, I forget the number, they will make sure I'm in the draw every week.
Well, send me the forms I said, hoping this would get rid of them fast. Oh no, not necessary, said they, just give us your bank account details over the phone.

Not so fast, I said. How do I know that you are who you say you are? Perhaps you are some agency collecting bank account numbers so you can pass through fraudulent debits? What protection do I have if give you my bank account number over the phone?

She tried hard to convince me. But when I asked her if she would give her own bank account number to a complete stranger over the phone, she agreed I had a point.

I soon learned that 99.9% of the phone calls I receive here are telemarketing calls. So now I just don't answer the phone. Unless you've made an appointment first.

If that sounds weird, it may comfort you to know that I do have a message service. And genuine callers leave messages.

If it's an emergency, send me a text.

And blame the telemarketers along with the spammers for ruining modern communication.