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Old 04-14-2012, 06:38 PM   #41
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Oh this was the most entertaining thread I ever read here! oldphd, your YouTube videos had me laughing so hard I almost peed myself!

Now Al, a most timely thread. I nearly started this very same thread a few weeks ago. Bottom line I don't think there is any way to stop this crap other than to ignore it.

I have lived here for over 13 years with the same land line phone number using an answering machine but without caller id. The day I heard you could sign up with the DNC list I did and I recalled a few years back to update it as I think it was good for 5 only years.

I bundled everything with the cable company on 2/1 and part of that is caller id and free unlimited long distance calling. Great now, I can identify those annoying wrong numbers and hang ups I get so often. So I tossed the answering machine and use the voice mail that came with this. Now I know every phone number that calls me whether they leave a message or hang up or talk to me.

Guess what? All these hang ups and wrong numbers where no one talks, they are not local calls as I thought. All these calls are toll free area codes or say 405 or 615 (where the hell that is) and so since I have free long distance anywhere in the USA I now call these numbers. Guess what? Virtually every one is a non working number! From reading the link on caller id spoofing I now see why that is. So unless I answer the phone I can't tell them to put me on their do not call list not that I believe that would help.

So now I look at caller id when the phone rings. If it is someone I don't care to talk or if it is a toll free area code or an area code outside my location, I press the talk button to connect to the call and then hang up a second or 2 later. If I don't do that and they leave a message I erase it.

Based upon the link to the low number of prosecuted calls I see this is a law with no teeth. So being on the DNC list, while it stopped the calls initially and for years, it means nothing now. I don't get a lot of these calls but I do get them. It isn't worth getting upset because "they should not be calling me" anymore, now with caller id I just screen them. You can do the same with an answering machine and you can turn off the ringer on the phone so you are not annoyed by the phone ringing.
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Old 04-15-2012, 07:14 AM   #42
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It has gotten bad with these political calls. Things have slacked off lately, but with the big election coming up, the calls will pick up. I think political calls are exempt from any laws, too. Your electors made it so. I think if the phone solicitors lobby funneled enough money to our elected politicians, the telemarketing calls would be legal once again.

Normally when the phone rings, I check the caller ID and if the number looks suspicious, I just pick up the receiver and put it back down again. I think the calls have dropped off.

I don't know...Tom Mabe can be kinda crude...I'm not too fond of cussing at people.
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Old 04-15-2012, 08:56 AM   #43
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The political calls are exempt from the do-not-call list restrictions, but they are not exempt from the robocall laws in California. But that doesn't stop the politicians from making robocalls. It tells you something about politicians that they don't obey the laws they enacted.

I haven't gotten any telemarketing calls since changing our outgoing phone message to this, and using the answering machine to screen all calls. Real people don't seem confused by it.

The problem is, if there is no message, I don't know if it's a foiled telemarketer, or someone who didn't leave a message. So I think I might get caller ID.
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Old 04-15-2012, 01:09 PM   #44
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I think you may be a bigger target in certain area codes, identified by the census for high incomes.
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Old 04-15-2012, 01:43 PM   #45
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In my state, most of the political calls come from voter registration rolls. If I were evil, I would mistakenly list a candidate's number, instead of listing no phone.

Any politician that makes those calls should get called hundreds of times a day, too.
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Old 04-15-2012, 03:20 PM   #46
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I think you may be a bigger target in certain area codes, identified by the census for high incomes.
Absolutely. When we moved here to the boonies from the bay area, our telemarketing calls dropped dramatically (also we had a new number).

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In my state, most of the political calls come from voter registration rolls. If I were evil, I would mistakenly list a candidate's number, instead of listing no phone.
This is my new strategy for junk mail: I printed out a page of labels saying "Our new Address:" followed by a bogus address in Utah. When I get junk mail, I put one of those on the reply card, and send it back in the postpaid return mailer. I considered using the address of a junk mailer, but my name is on there.
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Old 04-20-2012, 07:04 PM   #47
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Update: I installed this free app:

PhoneTray - Block Telemarketers and Stop Unwanted Calls

on 4/15/12. Since then we've received 18 normal calls, and 1 telemarketing call (note that although I installed the line to my desk only yesterday, I had moved the laptop to make use of an existing phone line before that).

The answering machine message with the "disconnected" tones at the start may have contributed to the sudden drop off of telemarketing calls (none until today). With PhoneTray we're able to let it go to the answering machine if we don't recognize the phone number.

It turns out my laptop has a modem in it, but that modem doesn't support voice. I plan to get a modem that does, because with that I can send out a true "This phone number has been disconnected or is no longer in service" message when a number is known to be from a telemarketer (or even if the caller ID is from a toll-free number).

PhoneTray is one of those nice apps that's well-designed and well-supported. It was probably written by some nerd in a back bedroom.

For example, when I noticed that a call was from College4Future, I let it go to the answering machine, and they did not leave a message. In the future, any calls from that number will be disconnected.

phonetray.jpg

Googling college4future, there are a lot of posts like this:
"they call me 6 times a day and have done so for 2 weeks. i just hang up on them EVERY single time.
Caller: college4future
Call Type: SMS"
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Old 04-20-2012, 07:09 PM   #48
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Al, I've bookmarked this one. I'll provide a link to this thread for any future potential retiree who asks "What will I do all day?"
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Old 04-21-2012, 12:46 AM   #49
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Al, I've bookmarked this one. I'll provide a link to this thread for any future potential retiree who asks "What will I do all day?"
Code software in a back bedroom?
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Old 04-21-2012, 09:11 AM   #50
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Al, I've bookmarked this one. I'll provide a link to this thread for any future potential retiree who asks "What will I do all day?"
Yeah, that's right. I sit next to the telephone all day with a clipboard saying "OK, that's four. Four calls so far."
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Old 04-21-2012, 10:17 AM   #51
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Yeah, that's right. I sit next to the telephone all day with a clipboard saying "OK, that's four. Four calls so far."


Maybe you could update us monthly on the call stats?
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Old 04-21-2012, 12:05 PM   #52
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Yeah, that's right. I sit next to the telephone all day with a clipboard saying "OK, that's four. Four calls so far."
In the other thread on your phone line install, I was expecting you to say, that it took you 2.5 hours, but would have only taken 1 hour if you weren't interrupted by all the telemarketers!

Interesting that the tone seems to help, I might try that. My pet peeve is they either don't answer if you do pick up, or they let the ans machine pick up, but don't leave a message, so I get the annoying beep-beep-beep until I reset it.

-ERD50
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Old 04-21-2012, 06:00 PM   #53
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We could call Al several times a day, (or night), to see how it is doing...
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Old 04-21-2012, 10:14 PM   #54
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Yeah, that's right. I sit next to the telephone all day with a clipboard saying "OK, that's four. Four calls so far."
"Ah... ah... ah!!"
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Old 04-22-2012, 09:58 PM   #55
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Has anyone here ever changed their vote because of a political phone call, bumper sticker or TV ad?

I didn't think so.

Why do they spend so much for such junk and at the same time try to convince us that they will look after our tax $$$?
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Old 04-23-2012, 01:20 PM   #56
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Has anyone here ever changed their vote because of a political phone call, bumper sticker or TV ad?

I didn't think so.

Why do they spend so much for such junk and at the same time try to convince us that they will look after our tax $$$?
Never changed my vote, but I did quit using drugs after the plastic mat in a urinal told me to.

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Old 04-23-2012, 10:37 PM   #57
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Never changed my vote, but I did quit using drugs after the plastic mat in a urinal told me to.




That's the BEST reply I ever read!
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Old 04-23-2012, 11:25 PM   #58
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It has gotten bad with these political calls. Things have slacked off lately, but with the big election coming up, the calls will pick up. I think political calls are exempt from any laws, too. Your electors made it so. I think if the phone solicitors lobby funneled enough money to our elected politicians, the telemarketing calls would be legal once again.

Normally when the phone rings, I check the caller ID and if the number looks suspicious, I just pick up the receiver and put it back down again. I think the calls have dropped off.

I don't know...Tom Mabe can be kinda crude...I'm not too fond of cussing at people.
It also appears that if you get on a political calling list its like a roach motel. My father died in 2002 yet in 2008 and even 2010 he got calls looking for contributions. Of course they apologize profusly when the call, but they appear unable to purge their lists. I also got junk mail from them, and debated sending them some bricks.
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Old 04-23-2012, 11:59 PM   #59
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It also appears that if you get on a political calling list its like a roach motel. My father died in 2002 yet in 2008 and even 2010 he got calls looking for contributions. Of course they apologize profusly when the call, but they appear unable to purge their lists. I also got junk mail from them, and debated sending them some bricks.
I throw a few bucks to my local member (a Democrat) of Congress every few years. But as a result, I am on some kind of donor list so I get lots of solicitations in the mail for many Democratic things including (back in 2002 after that round of redistricting) candidates in Democratic House and Senate primaries in states thousands of miles away! Sometimes, these letters start off with a survey and end with a "please donate" but all I do is answer the survey (not always with the answers they want to see, as I am merely a registered Independent) and stick it in their postage-paid envelope. If they want to take me off their lists that is fine with me but otherwise they will waste their money on me LOL!
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Old 04-24-2012, 06:06 AM   #60
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If they want to take me off their lists that is fine with me but otherwise they will waste their money on me LOL!
Scrabbler1, they aren't wasting their money on you, they're wasting your money on you. Many years ago we gave to PBS in a fundraiser. In the following years they spent that entire amount and a great deal more soliciting additional donations by mail and phone. I figured when we moved it would stop but it continues. So now we choose to help by not given donations and saving the expense of years of new solicitations.
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