Friday, June 27, 2003

Getting over my hang-ups

I was feeling pretty excited about the new service offered by the federal government that forbids telemarketers to wake you up in the morning, interrupt your dinner, hang up before you answer, and otherwise act as the human form of spam. Like several hundred thousand other ticked-off Americans, I hurried over to the registration Web site,, and entered my home number, my cell-phone number, and the number of my mother-in-law, who is convinced all those telemarketer hang-ups are really crooks casing the joint to see when no one's home. In the process, I found a few things that dampened my enthusiasm, like the fact that the blocking doesn't apply to banks, surveys, charities or politicians, which right there account for about three-quarters of the calls I'd hoped would be blocked. It also doesn't start until October 1, which means that telemarketers are probably going to be blitzing us during the summer months in a last-ditch attempt to annoy the heck out of the American public. Then, too, the site (undoubtedly due to the unanticipated torrent of visitors) was slow and glitchy, and the verification e-mail that was supposed to arrive in minutes took hours, and then arrived in duplicate. But I went ahead and completed the registration anyway. If it prevents one call that hangs up before I answer it or one sales pitcher who won't hang up when I do, it will be worth it.

No comments: