No Call = No Sense

by john on December 21, 2002

Many states have enacted “Do Not Call” legislation supposedly designed to protect consumers from unwanted telemarketing calls. This has been receiving a lot of airplay in Minnesota since Jesse (lame duck) Ventura signed into law the Minnesota “Do Not Call List” Law.

There has also been a lot of talk of a national registry. But the odds are good that if you sign up for one of these lists that you will actually increase the number of telemarketing calls you will receive.

Why? Because as with most legislation the law is chock-full of loopholes. In Minnesota the following organizations are exempt from the law:

  • Non profit organizations
  • Political organizations
  • Businesses with a prior relationship with the customer (such as banks, credit card companies and telephone companies)
  • Businesses that do not complete the sale over the phone, but rather complete the presentation in a face-to-face setting (such as home repair services, lawn services, and mortgage companies)

Now the spirit of the law says that these organizations do not need to purchase the list and therefor shouldn’t but will they comply? I don’t think so. For less than a couple hundred dollars they can buy a fully qualified marketing list that contains accurate and timely contact information the likes of which is not normally seen by these companies. This information is absolutely invaluable and it will be used to aggressively market to people on that list.

Companies such as carpet cleaners will call to offer a one room cleaning absolutely free. Then when they are at your house they will try to sell you on more rooms. And even if they can’t, you now have a relationship with them so the next time they call they don’t have to offer something for free.

Non-profits and political organizations that previously had no idea of your existence will now be free to pester you mercifully.

The No Call List makes no sense. Don’t be a sucker; don’t sign up.

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