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September 26th, 2003

Do Not Call – No, Really

A few months ago, I first Pinged the National Do Not Call Registry. And now, that same registry is on hold because – get this – it curtails the right of corporations to free speech.

Here’s the thing. Corporations aren’t people.

I know, I know, that’s one that needs to sink in a bit because it’s so “out there.” But free speech is guaranteed for people in the Constitution – not corporations. The ruling against the Do Not Call Registry stated that by having this list, Congress was railing against one type of speech (commercial) over another (pollsters, et al – the ones unaffected by the Registry.)

Problem is, telemarketers without any kind of real regulation just started annoying the hell out of people. Calls at dinner, automated calls… it just kept going. This was the rare time in which government had a real option for those interested in phone silence (or at least, fewer junk calls.) Mind you, it is an option. The way the judge went off on this, you’d think Congress was requiring people to sign up.

And it’s popularity only demonstrated how needed this list was.

I strongly disagree that the Registry is a blow against free speech. More like a blow against these corporations from making money through annoyance. Boo hoo.

Posted in Everyday Life

FROM: Chris
DATE: Friday September 26, 2003 -- 11:40:44 am
The thing the judge doesn't get is that this is not an infrigement of free speech, it is the citizens upholding their right to not listen.

FROM: Ryan
DATE: Friday September 26, 2003 -- 11:48:30 am
Right. A phone call is an interruption and I don't think the judge would argue that receiving 24 hours straight of interruptions does not constitute free speech. So, then, why would receiving one unsolicited interruption be any different?

FROM: jk
DATE: Friday September 26, 2003 -- 12:18:50 pm
I can't even imagine that telemarketers succeed at their goals! The only telemarketer whom I never hung up on was some kid from my college trying to get alumni to give $.

I think corporations are wasting an incredible amount of payroll by even making these calls!

FROM: Dave Walls [E-Mail]
DATE: Friday September 26, 2003 -- 2:05:29 pm
jk, you'd be right, if it wasn't for the fact that there are still some really gullible people out there.

I spent 2 days as a "fundraiser" in a call center in Forest, VA. The scrpt we were given was so suspicious sounding, I would have hung up the phone on me. Despite that, people were still giving loads of money to me, without asking questions, some of whom, came from low income households. (Yeah, they have access to that kind of info..).

Anyways, I still don't think the Do-not-call registry goes far enough. It still allows "charitable" causes to call, or business "with whom you already have an existing relationship with" to call. It's like with email: Your email address could get sold to many different companies, and they could claim that they have a relationship with you, distant as it might be.

Unlisted numbers aren't the solution (I know, mine is, and yet I get plenty of calls), it has to be stopped at the source. It's funny to hear those defending the industry, saying that thousands would be out of work, and it would "cripple the industry".

All I gotta say is: The unemployment line is right over there. McDonalds is hiring.

FROM: Ryan
DATE: Friday September 26, 2003 -- 5:06:13 pm
"Cripple the industry." As if that's a bad thing?

Kiddie porn is an industry, too. Nothing wrong with crippling that industry.

My point: just because jobs are going to be lost isn't a compelling reason to keep an industry alive. When one industry goes away, another similar one is nearby looking for people with similar skills.

FROM: jk
DATE: Friday September 26, 2003 -- 7:43:49 pm
It really wonders me (there's some PA dialect for you!) that people choose to work in this industry. I would rather sling burgers than deal with rejection all day long.

Dave, you and I should get together sometime and debate the finer points of unwanted calls and Oreos, don't you all agree?

FROM: Dave Walls [E-Mail]
DATE: Saturday September 27, 2003 -- 6:05:57 am
jk - Sounds like a plan. I'll be your huckleberry. ;)

FROM: jk
DATE: Saturday September 27, 2003 -- 2:37:02 pm
I don't get it, Dave! Maybe it's the effects of the drugs I am taking. I did forget a co-worker's name today, but I don't think she noticed.

So you live where, DE? Would the rest of the Pingers like to join us?

FROM: Ace High
DATE: Wednesday October 1, 2003 -- 2:02:02 pm

FROM: Rob [E-Mail]
DATE: Wednesday October 1, 2003 -- 2:13:20 pm
Eh... we'll leave you two kids alone so you can have some "quality time" together.

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