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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • Personally I think any marketing calls which I did not personally ask for are evil. So I've resorted to tarpitting [] them. When I get a call from someone trying to sell me something I say "That's really interesting, could you just hang on for a moment", then put the phone to the side and go back to whatever it was I was doing. Sometimes they stay on line for up to ten minutes before hanging up. About 10% of callers try again, no-one so far has tried a third time AFAICT. This hurts the telemarketers because i

    • The real reason this is not a great plan for me is that these people are calling my cell phone, and this will consume my minutes!
      • Wait, so you pay money when people call you? I wasn't aware of such a scheme (unless one is in a foreign country and has to pay roaming charges) and it seems like it isn't the greatest service in the world to be on (for the obvious reason that you just mentioned). Aren't there better mobile services available where you live? Or is this one just cheaper for your normal usage?
        • Every cellular calling plan I know of in the US works this way. You get a free minute on each inbound call, during which you are presumably expected to determine whether you want to accept the call. After that minute, it comes off of your minutes.

          It doesn't cost money, it just uses up the free minutes built into the plan -- but when those are depleted, yes, you get charged by the minute for your inbound and outbound calls.
          • Oh dear ... I have no words for that. I suppose that might go a long way towards explaining why cellphones haven't taken off in the U.S. as much as they have in Europe.

            You're right of course, that makes my suggestion less than helpful, sorry about that. Also makes your hypothesis of the cell phone companies collaborating with telemarketers a lot more likely to be correct IMO.