Tuesday, July 23, 2013

CRTC Do Not Call List

I have just added my cellphone (new number) to the CRTC Do Not Call List. (To register go to https://www.lnnte-dncl.gc.ca/index-eng.)

There will be a 31 day delay before telemarketers are not allowed to call me.

Once in place however I will be blocked from telemarketer lists until August 23rd 2018. Basically it will protect me for 5 years.

Now you might ask, why did I suddenly do that today?

Well I got a call from a poor English speaking man claiming that I had filled out a ballot a year ago at a Wal-Mart, K-Mart or similar location.

Which is funny because I NEVER shop at Wal-Mart or K-Mart, and even funnier because I have only had this new phone number for a month or so, so it is impossible for me to have filled out a ballot a year ago and given them a phone number which did not even exist yet.

All of this I explained to the man who could barely speak English and whom I had to ask him repeat himself several times because I couldn't understand him.

Normally I prefer to just hang up on telemarketers - but sometimes I like to find out what they are selling first. In this case he was offering "free coupons" for the above mentioned stores. Stores I would never shop at any way.

Unfortunately this adding of my phone to the National Do Not Call List Registry will not stop all calls.

I can still be contacted by the following...

#1. Newspapers selling subscriptions.
#2. Companies I have a contract with (eg. Rogers, Virgin Mobile).
#3. Political organizations.
#4. Charities.
#5. Telemarketers operating overseas in the USA, India, etc.

However I do believe we should eventually have the option to block such calls as well. It is what I call the "friends allowed list" wherein phones would become more like Facebook accounts and only people who are listed as "friends" will be able to call you.

Companies that you have service contracts with could also call you, but if they want to keep your business they had better not make an annoying habit of it.

Thus it is numbers 1, 3, 4 and 5 that people should be able to effectively block in the future because they won't be able to call you.

I also like the alternative idea... making your phone number a 1-900 number.

By having a 1-900 number it means people are charged a premium rate whenever they call you. In other words they are PAYING EXTRA just to phone you.

You can charge anything from 50 cents per call, or you can charge so much per minute. It is typically used by phone psychics, horoscope companies, weather info, gambling tips, dating lines, voting and contests TV shows, etc.

But think about it. If you get a 1-900 number then people will have to PAY to speak to you. No more harassing calls from ex-boyfriends or ex-girlfriends. No more telemarketers or other annoying calls. Even your family members will call you less (added bonus if you don't like certain family members and the feeling is mutual).

However you do have to pay a fee to have a 1-900 number - but if you are besieged by telemarketers it might be totally worth it.

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