60 Seconds Exploring Design & Technology since 1988

How much would you pay to punish telemarketers?


There should be an APP developer out there who could design an app to “punish’ the practice of telemarketing using robots and fake phone numbers. I had two calls yesterday that didn’t even ring … they went straight to voice mail! But you see, you cannot punish them. 

It’s impossible, you cannot win.

App writers and hackers alike find it far more profitable to promote and support robo telemarketing than to thwart it. But consider how many people would be willing to pay $3 bucks to fight back! Wow, there could be billions in it. (31 billion robocalls were reported in 2017!) It would never succeed though, because it’s ultimately the telephone company’s fault — they control the numbers! They also control YOU and me. They can zap any app with the flick of a switch, any time they like.

The remedy would be found in crowdsourcing.

While we should ALL complain to the carrier each and every time that robo-call comes, they won’t listen and they won’t act! It’s in their best interest to let the criminals continue! Heck, they even charge for “Premium Caller ID” to tell you if the call is a scam — $2.99 a month! Hmpf! So, they’re making money off of your misery!

So crowdsourcing is the answer.  If a million people download the app, then submit a telemarketing number, a database would compare numbers.  Once a sufficient number of people have “complained” you’re sure it’s a robo number and the app could return the call via the million users. Boom. The local phone company would be forced to turn that number off. BOOM. Then by the millions numbers would get deleted from the system.  Think if 10-million use the app!

Have you reached the point where you don’t even answer your phone anymore because so often it’s just robocalls or scams?
An Estimated 22.1M Americans Lost $9.5B in Phone Scams Last Year

According to True Caller:  With an average loss of $430 per victim, the result of these scams are projected to cost 22.1M Americans approximately $9.5 billion*, up by 56% from the 2015 survey, which showed an average amount lost of $274.  (read more)
Here’s a good chart!

Cutting off Robocalls

Robocalls and telemarketing calls are currently the number one source of consumer complaints at the FCC  . . . read more .

Title 47 U.S. Code § 227 – Restrictions on use of telephone equipment

  • (5) The term “unsolicited advertisement” means any material advertising the commercial availability or quality of any property, goods, or services which is transmitted to any person without that person’s prior express invitation or permission, in writing or otherwise.
  • (A) to make any call (other than a call made for emergency purposes or made with the prior express consent of the called party) using any automatic telephone dialing system or an artificial or prerecorded voice—
  • (B) to initiate any telephone call to any residential telephone line using an artificial or prerecorded voice to deliver a message without the prior express consent of the called party

Here’s the actual law : law.cornell.edu/

Detect and block spam phone calls with third-party apps
Set up a third-party app on your iOS device to help you detect and block spam phone calls.  Here’s what Apple has to say about the iPhone

Federal Trade Commission says: To Combat Robocalls, ‘Just Hang Up’:

Our No. 1 consumer tip for consumers, in terms of dealing with robocalls, is to just hang up. We don’t want consumers to engage in any way with the robocallers. A lot of times when you get a robocall, you have the option of pressing one for more information or pressing two to ask to be removed from the list. And in either case, pressing one or two basically lets the robocaller know that it’s a live person on the other line who’s willing to engage, and that could lead to additional robocalls. So our No. 1 tip is just hang up.

Go to : FTC.gov/robocalls

End telemarketing


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60 Seconds Exploring Design & Technology since 1988
Fred Showker explores design, graphics, computing, social media, marketing, and the online world with an eye to entertaining, amazing information that will possibly make you think!

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