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Oops, Dave Barry Does It Again 733

Posted by timothy
from the free-nights-and-weekends dept.
agdv writes "After the success of his first article providing the phone number of the American Teleservices Association, and the ensuing reaction by said organization, columnist Dave Barry attacks again, providing the ATA's new phone number. Read all about it! (the number is 317-816-9336, long distance charges may apply)."
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Oops, Dave Barry Does It Again

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  • by mooface (674033) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @09:56AM (#7136619)
    I like the idea of calling the association, but I am more enthusiastic about contacting the heads of the association at home, during dinner. It would be a real shame if someone were to dig up those folks numbers....
  • by another misanthrope (688068) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @09:56AM (#7136620)
    ...I can't get a hold of the national do not call list too see if Dave's on it or not.

    don't wanna get hit with that 2K fine ya know...
  • by slobbit (466842) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @09:57AM (#7136622)

    I'd call and say,
    "Please hold for an important message..."

  • by Praedon (707326) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @09:58AM (#7136625) Journal
    He serves a valid point... They call you, and it is extremely rude to call someone who doesn't want to be called.. So they sit there and say that what he did was rude.. hes just doing what they are doing to prove a point.. And he should keep doing it till Telemarketing is destroyed, and the agency comes up with a BETTER idea, like say perhaps getting permission to call?
    • by Skater (41976) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:15AM (#7136692) Homepage Journal
      I really wonder what kind of person would run a company that is so obviously reviled. I mean, at some point my survival instinct would kick in and say, "Wow. I'm doing something people really, really hate. And they know who I am. And there are some real wackos out there. Hmm..."

      It reminds me of a friend that worked for US Airways. Her job? "I overbook flights." That always got an interesting reaction from people, although none that I saw were actually nasty.

      --RJ
    • by cybermace5 (446439) <g.ryan@macetech.com> on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:24AM (#7136740) Homepage Journal
      They have already had that idea. They are running promotions where you get a mailing asking you to choose which type of soda/pop/Coke you prefer, and they will send you a free 12-pack. However in fine print it reads that you agree to accept telemarketing calls.

      I don't know exactly how this works, but if you once slip up and do something like this, have you blown it for good? How far can the business relationship clause be taken? I think there should be a way to "reset" your do-not-call status in some way, essentially saying that you wish to have all current "business relationships" to be considered dissolved, and under no circumstances wish to receive solicitations from any company. Because once your name gets into the "business relationship grapevine," can you say "do not call me again" fast enough to keep your number from spreading like the latest royal family gossip?
  • by Karamchand (607798) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:00AM (#7136629)
    It seems they don't just need a new phone number (again!) but soon they'll also need a new (additional!) web server ;-)
    • by squarefish (561836) * on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:22AM (#7136728)
      yeah, whoever posted this should have had thier url as the very first link in the story- /.'ers don't even read the topic before they start clicking the new links, but having to RTFA first- link is at the bottom- will prevent their site from getting the amount of traffic it truely deserves.

      So, click here [ataconnect.org]
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:00AM (#7136630)
    I love telemarketers. I can be as amazingly offensive to them as I like because they're being fucking irritating and interrupting me; and if they reply in the same manner they could get fired. It's the most stress relieving activity I've ever encountered. Probably pisses them off though.

    Shame.
  • by sczimme (603413) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:02AM (#7136634)

    From the article:

    And I am, frankly, tempted to reveal to you here that the American Teleservices Association (www.ataconnect.org/) seems to have a phone line working (at least for now) at 317-816-9336.
    ...
    ... that's just plain rude. So I am taking the high road.


    Whew! That was close. We wouldn't want Mr. Barry to sully his relationship with the ATA by posting such scandalous info. Kudos to you, sir, for your strenuous efforts to maintain some level of decorum!

    However, I have no such relationship... :-)

    American Teleservices Association 317-816-9336
    American Teleservices Association 317-816-9336
    American Teleservices Association 317-816-9336
    American Teleservices Association 317-816-9336
    American Teleservices Association 317-816-9336

    Have a nice day!
  • by Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:06AM (#7136649)
    - Get a 1-900 number
    - Anonymously tip off Dave Barry, telling him my number is an ATA number
    - Wait for Dave Barry to post my number on the innurnet
    - profit
    • Re:Note to self (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Jerf (17166) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:16AM (#7136702) Journal
      Perhaps surprisingly for a humor columnist, Dave Barry actually does his research, so this probably wouldn't work. (He jokes a lot about how easy being a humor columnist is but a big part of his success is how much work he puts into it.)

      This is a surprisingly change over a lot of people punditing about world events, who's "research" seems to consist of skimming over one biased source of news like CNN and then misinterpreting that to fit their biases even more. It's almost a pity Dave Barry is a humor columnist in a way.
  • by cioxx (456323) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:10AM (#7136664) Homepage
    This "idea" is really not that great second time around.

    Firstly, it's Sunday in US. Chances are no one is there. By tomorrow, it'll drop off the first page (although I realize Barry has his followers)

    Secondly, it's not a toll-free number. You have to pay long-distance charges, hence there is no actual damage done to the association people might want to annoy.

    Can we let it go? The laws are fucked up. How about publishing the numbers of those congressmen who voted against DNC list? I don't see what this campaign is going to accomplish. Go after the gatekeeper.
    • by bc90021 (43730) *
      Actually, it will still cost them money:

      "An ATA staffer has spent about five hours a day for the past six days monitoring the voice mail and clearing out messages."

      (From the article, sorry, I know I shouldn't have read it first. ;) )

      Don't forget, for the people in the 317 area code, it is a local call, and for those of us with cell phone plans that include unlimited nights and weekends on a national plan, it doesn't cost a thing. ;)

    • by Guppy06 (410832) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @01:08PM (#7137542)
      "Firstly, it's Sunday in US. Chances are no one is there. By tomorrow, it'll drop off the first page (although I realize Barry has his followers)"

      Voice mail, as was mentioned in TFA you didn't R.

      "You have to pay long-distance charges, hence there is no actual damage done to the association people might want to annoy."

      Wasted man-hours.

      "Can we let it go?"

      If they can't, why should we?

      "How about publishing the numbers of those congressmen who voted against DNC list?"
      • Rob Bishop (R-UT)
        • Washington, DC Office: 202-225-0453
        • Ogden, Utah Office: 801-625-0107
      • Tim Ryan (D-OH)
        • Washington, DC Office: 202-225-5261
        • Warren, Ohio Office: 330-373-0074
        • Youngstown, Ohio Office: 330/740-0193
      • Lee Terry (R-NE)
        • Washington, DC Office: 202-225-4155
        • Omaha, Nebraska Office: 402-397-9944
      • Jeff Flake (R-AZ)
        • Washington, DC Office: 202-225-2635
        • Mesa, Arizona Office: 480-833-0092
      • Ted Strickland (D-OH)
        • Washington, DC Office: 202-225-5705
        • Marietta, Ohio Office: 740-376-0868
        • Wheelersburg, Ohio Office: 740-574-2676
        • Boardman, Ohio Office: 330-965-4220
        • Martins Ferry, Ohio Office: 740-633-2275
      • Ron Paul (R-TX)
        • Washington, DC Office: 202-225-2831
        • Freeport, Texas Office: 979-230-0000
        • Victoria, Texas Office: 361-576-1231
        • Western District (14) Office: 512-753-5553
      • Tom Tancredo (R-CO)
        • Washington, DC Office: 202-225-7882
        • Centennial, Colorado Office: 720-283-9772
      When complaining, refer to House Resolution 395 (Do-Not-Call Implementation Act), which they saw fit to vote against on 12 February 2003 at 5:17 PM.
  • by WindBourne (631190) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:10AM (#7136668) Journal
    I would say that it is slashdotted, But I suspect that it is more like "americaed".
  • Opt-In List ? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jalilv (450956) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:10AM (#7136671) Homepage
    Instead of having a opt-out list there should be an Opt-in list. The people who want to be called will enlist giving their explicit permission to telemarketers. It would clear the confusion and make it easy for everyone. Most of the people do not want to be called but they may not enlist in opt-out list and may end up getting calls. The opt-in list will solve the problem. To be fair, the telemarketers will be given one chance to call everyone and ask their permission to call in the future. They will get their answer right then and there from the horse's mouth ;-)

    Btw, Kudos to Dave!!!

    - Jalil Vaidya
  • Call Collect (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:11AM (#7136672)
    If you call collect they still get a call. They'll probably reject the charges, but the phone will still ring.

    Do you accept the charges from "An Angry Phone Customer"?
  • Busy.... (Score:5, Funny)

    by disc-chord (232893) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:13AM (#7136682)
    Wow, /. a phone number in the early morning hours of a sunday. Nice work guys! Let's see if we can keep it that way for a while.
    • Busy *Update* (Score:5, Informative)

      by disc-chord (232893) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @11:26AM (#7137042)
      The mail box on this number is full... but the system let's you jump to all other mailboxes!

      Listen to the message, go through the menu, hit 1 to access other mailboxes or you can use the company directory (Hint [216.239.59.104] Hint [216.239.59.104]) to leave messages for all your favorite ATA associates!

      I believe the mailboxes are all 3 digit numbers, the number Dave Berry Posted is mailbox #104.
  • UK (Score:5, Interesting)

    by larien (5608) * on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:15AM (#7136691) Homepage Journal
    Here in the UK, we have the TPS [tpsonline.org.uk] (Telephone Preference Service) which is our "do not call" registry. Funnily enough, the UK economy has not gone down the tubes with the introduction of this (well, no worse than it usually does).

    Using "free speech" rights to quash the list in America is, in my opinion, an abuse of the constitution. Mind you, it's not the first time it's been mangled and abused for the benefit of some interested party.

    • Re:UK (Score:3, Funny)

      by phillymjs (234426)
      Here in the UK, we have the TPS

      I like the new cover sheets on their reports!

      /me ducks

      ~Philly
  • telemarketers on cnn (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Tancred (3904) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:16AM (#7136699)
    I saw a few minutes on telemarketers on CNN a few days ago and they rolled out the same excuses Dave Barry ridicules. They said they were hardworking people, just like the rest of us. They actually argued that it was bad because it would put people out of work.

    In a later discussion on the same show someone pulled out the lame-sounding but apt question - should stealing cars be legal just because it puts people out of work if it's illegal?. Some dufus responded, saying it was an invalid argument since stealing cars is illegal. Finish the thought and you've got "...stealing cars is illegal and calling people who don't want to be called is legal". So the dufus had a rather circular argument - it should be legal because it's legal. I was rather annoyed that nobody called him on it.

    Anyway, it's fun to watch this one from the sidelines. I haven't had a landline in 3 years. :)
  • by Lumpish Scholar (17107) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:19AM (#7136709) Homepage Journal
    The telemarketers are trying, no matter what the consequences are to others, to defend their right to make calls.

    The politicians are trying, no matter what the consequences are to others, to react to popular demand (not a terrible thing) but to defend their right to make calls. (The "unconstitutional" argument is that charities, churches, and politicians can still call, but businesses can't.)

    But we can be part of the problem, too. Not in demanding to eat dinner, or work from home, uninterrupted; that's fair. On the other hand, when we take out our frustration on the underpaid guys on the other end of the line -- instead of politely saying, "please put me on your company's do-not-call list, have a nice day" -- then we, too, are pursuing our agendas no matter what the consequences are to others.

    And the next time you get a call, be as angry as you want at the caller's employer, but remember: you're only one layoff and twelve months of unemployment away from the person calling you.
  • by eggoeater (704775) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:20AM (#7136717) Journal
    I usually just hang up on them. I have a friend that listens intently, maybe asks some questions, then says 'Hold on while I get my credit card.' Then he puts the phone down and doesn't check back for at least a half hour. One telemarketer he did this to called him back later from his home to bitch about all the time wasted from making a quota or some BS like that.
    I actually work in a call center (service ONLY, no telemarketing) and I've heard of some unusual things happening. People calling from their car and getting into a wreck because they're trying to read an account number from their checkbook; some guy even had a heart-attack right when he called, the phone rep (who luckily already had his account info) called the paramedics for him. That's not a time when you want to hear 'Your call is very important to us....'
    -Steve
    • by Artifex (18308) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:55AM (#7136874) Journal
      Your friend could have gotten the telemarketer fired. Also, if he called from home, your friend could have started calling him daily, "just to see how the job is going."

      I was called once by a roofing service. When I said go away, they hung up... but their system didn't totally disconnect. I heard some other dialing and voices in the background, so after a minute I said hello. A different guy answered, called me by someone else's name, and started the same pitch. I was sooooo tempted to say "yes, please come give the free inspection, come in through the back, ok?"

      Also, everyone please consider calling the number in my sigfile and leaving a generic complaint. An update on the situation: MBNA called me multiple times asking me if I wanted to change my card from an Audobon Society Platinum Visa (where the Society makes a tiny amount of profit) to some generic MBNA Platinum Mastercard. I told them no multiple times, and they finally stopped calling, but two days later I got a letter congratulating me on being "approved" for an "upgrade" from the Visa to the Mastercard. I guess they just decided they'd slam my account over so they could stop paying out to the Audobon Society.

      Moral of the story: MBNA engages in devious practices, including slamming and using telemarketers who don't respect wishes of existing customers, and should be avoided.
  • by CooCooCaChoo (668937) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:26AM (#7136748)
    Remote shocking device to allow the victim of telemarketing to send a 4000amp charge down the line to the person at the call centre.

    Another would be for the US to declare war on Telemarketing. Why? well, when ever GWB has a speech, guess what happens? the phone rings. When the phone rings, GWB loses his "connection with the American public". If you get rid of the telemarketers, you get a loyal listening audience ;-)

    Could you imagine the speech?

    "My fellow Americans, our country is under attack by spam, telemarketing and faxes. This group constitutes a Triangle of Trash. We must unit as a people to purge this scourge from this great nation of ours. Countries who current allow these communication terrorists to operate in their country have to make a decision, they are either with us or against us."
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:26AM (#7136752)
    Betsy Devine's blog has this quote:

    "The number Dave Barry printed is now disconnected. And of course it is illegal as well as wrong to make prank phone calls. The law stands firm against the kinds of jokes played by 9 year-old kids!

    But surely it's a fair use of free speech to call the ATA's legislative branch, whose toll-free number is listed on their contact page as (866) 500-4272, and urge them to lobby for better Do Not Call laws."

    Surely.
  • ATA response (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ArmorFiend (151674) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:37AM (#7136788) Homepage Journal
    I predict the ATA uses Caller-ID to harvest the phone numbers of everyone who calls them, then states that they have a "prior business relationship" with them, and starts calling them back.
    • by anticypher (48312) <anticypher&gmail,com> on Sunday October 05, 2003 @11:33AM (#7137084) Homepage
      The bad thing about toll-free numbers, and special-toll numbers (1-800, 1-888, 1-900, etc. in the U.S.) is that the dialing number is always passed to the terminating equipment. Nothing[1] you can do can block this number from being delivered.

      But with a normal number (1-317-ppp-nnnn), it is possible to block your number. Use calling ID suppression (*67 or whatever your CLASS activation code is) before dialing this number, so they can't claim "prior business relationship".

      the AC

      [1] Its possible to make calls without a traceable ID, but its difficult and requires an SS7 [openss7.org] connection
  • A new business model (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Albanach (527650) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:39AM (#7136796) Homepage
    Could there be a new business model in opt-in calling? Essentially marketers could cut down on the number of people they call, reducing their costs and increasing their success rate. With a higher success rate they get higher profit margins, that would allow them to either pass on discounts to those who do opt in, or even to pay people who are willing to be called and listen to the sales pitch.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:45AM (#7136826)
    American Teleservices Association, Inc.
    +1 (818) 766 5324
    +1 (800) 441 3335
    http://www.ataconnect.org/
  • by Potor (658520) <farker1@[ ]il.com ['gma' in gap]> on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:45AM (#7136827) Journal
    The list does not ban charities and political fundraising, but only commerical calling. The hard sell of charities and polital fundraising is, to my mind, more annoying than any commercial solicitation.
    . Placing your number on the National Do Not Call Registry will stop most, but not all, telemarketing calls. You may still receive calls from political organizations, charities, telephone surveyors, the business of insurance (to the extent that it is regulated by state law), or companies with which you have an existing business relationship.
    http://www.donotcall.gov/
  • by smartin (942) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:50AM (#7136847)
    The number of assholes calling had dropped off in that last while leading up to the Oct 1st date. Now since Oct 1st we've recieved more calls than we have in the previous month. It seems that with things in a state of limbo the telemarketers are figuring on getting as many calls in as they can.

    I used to tell them simply that i'm not interested and hang up. Now i tell them i'm on the list, call them names and generally abuse them. I can't understand what would make a telemarketer think that they would have a successfull call to someone who has actively taken measures that indicate that they explicitely don't want to receive them.
  • by rikomatic (673311) <rikomatic@nospaM.yahoo.com> on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:53AM (#7136869)
    .... is that there's nothing in it for me. Obvious Barry struck a deep nerve when he published the telemarketing firm's number. I think its the "something for nothing" nerve.

    Why should I give you five minutes of my time on the telephone when you have nothing to offer me? I watch TV ads because I am being served "free" television shows. I look at pop-up ads (well, not really) because I have to get through them to get to the web content / porn that I am looking for. Billboards at least try and entertain or titillate me.

    Telemarketing does nothing for me. Maybe if when they called I got 50 cents off my my phone bill each month I wouldn't get so ticked. In Europe, when you buy some sim cards for your cell phone, you can call a special code that will give you free local minutes on your cell, but first you have to listen to a 45 second commercial. I'm happy to listen to their little ad for the free minutes.

    Surely these companies can come up with incentives for people to listen to their damn spiels. Every other form of advertising does.
  • by SpaceRook (630389) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:56AM (#7136885)
    When I moved down to Northern VA and first got my phone, I was getting tons of telemarketing calls. But then I did something simple. The second I realized a call was a telemarketer, I said: "I'm sorry, but I'm not interested. Please take my number off your list." Click. That's it. I went from getting an average of 2 calls a day down to zero. Really. I hardly ever got called after I started doing that.
  • by Therlin (126989) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @10:58AM (#7136897)
    They've been calling me for years, therefore I'd like to think that we have a business relationship.

    That's good enough for me to call them and say hi and sell them some of my programming services.
  • by CrystalFalcon (233559) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @11:46AM (#7137149) Homepage
    A comprehensive list of phone numbers to telemarketing call centers [salesvantage.com]

    I am sure they want to talk to people, as lonely as they must be.

    Let's start from the top? I'll start from the top myself, and I'll have my fax machine start from the bottom.
  • by Tony Hammitt (73675) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @12:15PM (#7137265)
    Forward your home phone to that number during dinner. Your friends will know to call you back later and the telemarketers will be calling themselves! :)
  • One Word (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Thorin_ (164014) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @12:35PM (#7137366)
    I've got ne word for you.

    "Collect"

    The real purpose of calling the number is to annoy the telemarketers. Calling collect makes it even more annoying and it saves you from getting charged for the call. :)
  • by Avihson (689950) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @12:35PM (#7137368)
    Can someone show me just where in the Bill of Rights it talks about Corporations?

    In all the law and criminal justice classes I have been taking these past 2 years, I always got the impression that the Constitution and, more specifically, the Bill of Rights defined:
    the limits that the Government can infringe on the Pre-existing rights of Human Beings

    Corporations are entities created by governments, and therefore have only the rights granted to them by those governments.

    Now point me to a link that proves me wrong --
  • by mwdib (56263) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @12:44PM (#7137418)
    1. The ethics of this:
    Hmmm. The golden rule . . . do unto others. I don't think that applies much to a marketing association, but I guess I'd apply it to the notion of calling individuals at home.

    2. It's who you do business with:
    Interestingly enough, I have two phone companies.
    One is Cox Communications. Within a couple of days of getting that phone number, I was beseiged with telemarketers and it has never let up.
    I've also got a number from Sprint. I've had that number for a couple of years. Not a single telemarketing call.

    3. A rant
    So I call Qwest to get a home phone number. They generously offer to charge me only $3 or $4 per month to NOT publish my phone number.
    Okay.
    Can you say ex-tor-tion?
    I come to your store and generously offer to charge you only $500 per month to NOT set your store on fire.
    It's a great business plan: pay me to not do something. Sort of like a SCO license, I guess.

  • by Egotistical Rant (42993) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @12:45PM (#7137426)
    This happened about two years ago:

    You may have seen a gizmo called a "TeleZapper" advertised on late-night TV, which purports to scare telemarketers away. Understanding its operation requires just a little familiarity with telemarketing technology, which I'll attempt to distill here: the telemarketing firm has a system called an "autodialer" which works sequentially through a list of phone numbers in a marketing database. After dialing a number, the system listens for one of three things: a person's voice, in which case the system then either plays a prerecorded sales pitch or connects an unfortunate person working as an automaton to deliver an "interactive" sales pitch (this is why sometimes you answer your phone and get a pause followed by a telemarketer asking "Hello?" even though you're the one answering the phone); a fax tone, in which case the system might either deliver a fax advertisement, or remove the phone number from the database and move on to the next in the list; or it might hear what's called a "SIT tone," which is that series of three ascending beeps you hear when you've dialed a disconnected number...such numbers are of course of no value to the telemarketing firm, so upon hearing this, the system will delete the number from the database and move on. What the TeleZapper does is intercept incoming calls, play a SIT tone, then (if they don't disconnect, as an autodialer would) put the call through to your actual telephone. I've heard one can achieve much of the same effect simply by putting the SIT tone at the start of their answering machine message...I had a WAV file of the tone on my computer somewhere, and just never got around to doing that.

    Anyway, with the bulk of the techno-babble out of the way...

    It was around noon on a Saturday that I received one of those delightful prerecorded sales calls. But this one was different. Normally, telemarketers block their phone number from Caller ID, so if one subscribes to that service they'll only see "Unknown" when such a call arrives. For some reason, this one didn't...my phone displayed the number from which the autodialer was working. That's odd.

    Normally I'd shrug and go back to whatever I was doing. But I was just getting over the flu, stuck at home on a rainy Saturday, bored to tears. I just had to try something. Something evil.

    I selected the "Call Log" option on my phone, which brought up the last incoming number...the autodialer...then pressed "Dial." Of course, the number was busy...the autodialer was inflicting its annoying sales pitch on someone else at the moment, and would be doing that all day. And even if it wasn't, the autodialer isn't programmed to answer an incoming call. But...but...if I could time my call just right, I'd finish dialing just as the autodialer is picking up to make its next call. As I said, I'm stuck at home, nothing to do...so...hang up, redial, busy. Hang up, redial, busy. Lather, rinse, repeat. Then, after only about a minute of this...hang up, redial, sound of autodialer trying to dial the next number in its database! I managed to intercept it!

    Like a dog that finally catches up with the rabbit, I wasn't exactly sure what to do with it now. I cleared my throat. Since this wasn't a SIT tone, nor a fax beep, the autodialer interpreted this as a voice "answering" the phone and delivered its prerecorded sales pitch. Feh.

    When it got to the end of the recording, it then attempted to drop the line and dial the next number. However, in another one of those phone technicalities, this won't work because I had initiated the call; only I can drop the line. Due to the chance timing, the autodialer had answered my call. So I'm still connected to the autodialer, and hear it try to dial the next number, blissfully unaware that it doesn't even have a dial tone.

    So I try another experiment. Though I'm still a bit scratchy with a sore throat, I whistle my best approximation of the ascending SIT tone. And immediately, the autodialer tries to drop the line and proceed with an
    • The SIT tone (Score:4, Informative)

      by goon america (536413) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @05:29PM (#7139124) Homepage Journal
      For any interested parties, here is the SIT tone, .wav gzipped then base64 encoded [fourmilab.ch] into ascii:

      H4sICK4SHj4AA3NpdC10b25lLndhdgDtm/lSGlkYxcl/8+e8wf AA8xKpTKyyatREcAEEweCKikHckB13RcUFFRUXRGM0ieMTzr1N 07n0ertpsIHPVKpSwZP8hNPf+c6t7u72trbnXyZT3/vejyNTQf OfJpPpHfr1z7OJ+f3O9IfJ6wl6rOh74s3xtRSYHHY7ei2fOjs6 Oru6e2wu7/jMfGRlO3N6WXh4+vny+vr68vPpoXB5mtleiczPjH tdtp7uLvztnyy9DvfwZGApvpY+zF3dPT7/+u/19b+XH9/vb86z e5vJ5eD06NBAv/VzV0dHR9dna//A0Oh0cDm5uZc9v7n//uMFf/ uv58e7q9xhei0GLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMAC LMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLMACLM ACLI3Kkt1dDQd9mMBi6el3fvHNhlfTx+jF78/Pj/fXuYOtxOLM mMfRZ7VYe+3uUf9CfDNzdl18fHp++la4zO6uRYKTpHx5JX18cY vliDl3uJVYIuXTC/GNzNlVSX6XP9lbi8xNDnPyiQBPvp3E8gFW PjI9H9vYPyXl0bmpsnwAy1M7R5z8HMu/jg+x8sGy/I6Tr2P5oK 0XvY7eyfFACMnPOfnRdipEyqfmo+tY/o2RX53ur0fnp0YG7Vje h+RfQ6ntI/wxIPnD7fnRTioUmECfFqLrtQ0OT81F1/dO8oz8Ec s3YvPTpHwpuX3IyS+QfDkw8YWRow8Oy9c4efHqNMPI3azcMzaD 5TlOfpxewXJnWT4ZjJDys8xGfGF6lJU7sDyxxZPP+ji5F8t3s5 eFkvz6LLMZX/CT8sXE1kHu+v4RywuXx+nV8KzPy8l9wfAqKT/Y jC8iuYOVj/oXE5sHpK0YVzpZX3ixK7H8Acv5rnSIuHKV58owth Vr6hsFU+f5pp4QmDpJmnpkeiG2kTmVNfXOsaIriwJXMqYemmBc WSHnuTK2Tpp6nzA160rO1KwrCTnjyn3Slesxnqn5rpQ2dZHC1D xXzkX4pl7gTM24MilwJc/Uu9m8gitvWFdieZjC1A6BqdHryNRZ RVMnGFP3MXK3hKldpKklR62YqeVH7YFw1G7yRm1QedTKmDoqML WWUUuaWm7UxlSP2nEcjEhe3ajtLY1aGVN7+PJjeVOLjFo5U2sb tRVyuVE75i/JSVdypiZGLStnXOknXbkY55maP2qr2R8URi3N/i ActR6FUetiXSm2P4R03x/yhKn5o5Z+f9AyagX7A3/UUuwPBc7U m8L94aAsr2LU0u4P6ketmv2BP2pV7Q+Ko1bD/qA8aun3B/FRy8 pLo3a4wpVi+wM5avflRq2u+4PyqFWzP3jp9gfqUcs3tZ+3P8iP WtbUcqOWfn8wRFXj7w/Gr2rV7w+tWtX4piZHrV9rVVMytbaqpn Z/qEtV66eoasT+IF7VUsauantQ1Yxb1eRNTVvV8rpXNcH+AFUN qhpUNTX7g1xVo94fmrKqZfmjVoej3sapajU96n3Tqia2P1RV1U RNbeCqRrE/1KmqKe8PjVzVFPcHg1U1sf1Be1VTYeoGq2p8Uzd7 VRPsDy1b1X7vD4pVjeKoF6oaVDWoarWvale6VDWa/QGq2htVtV 1jVzWqo96GrGoqj3opq5rc/qC5qtmgqtX0rhz1VU2fu3LEqtp+ 01U15f2hLlVN7f7Q/FXtqIZVTXF/UKxqvLty/DW4Kweq2htVtY qjXoErb+9l9geoarJV7d6QVU24P1RT1XLVVzUj3JWjT1WTPerV UNV02R+0V7W40atagz9AoVTV3uYBisaqapr2B6hqDV3VKPaH6q ua0NTVVjVS3tRVrQZHvXWqaiPqqtob3JWjtqrV4gGK2la16veH Vq1q+j1AQYxaJVNrq2pq94e6VDXlByhyNPtDhSvPMutR/DcOmw NfIhE8XQrFIuPAMPo5XXabYxC9R8zx1t198Rb9GyvL6NNz2u0O ZpiiN+cavXCD3tgUE/92+wCOiCQeRMX7O+S2rQR+R9ELzqGxry Fk5Mtb9AKmjeG7txw2O7Yo+klO8rfo/2aymgd1pQCVXgkRUAkC KklALSXRVSCEGsdQWQkoPLE4KJ80lJOBmpqL4TecBzXAQp2XoI 4w1KgA6loS6qwCaja8RkBFCKgoAbUaDnBQ85RQ/jLUDCXUXJVQ OUmoGwEUuhJTKJkZKJTqzFXqKEEtl6GYm+rQ5MNQLmmoSQ7qNn +yKwF1jKHGfkNts1Bo/CUXqaB2MVRRGiovgEJ+xlCXCAoNqaEy VLwMhcYPmp1jHgYKR1YJ6q4M5ZaGsqmDYi4yBDUX3aCCmiGhjp SgDkiowPIqARUloCIE1FpktgQ1WAGVxVDj0lADNFDlKz+OY4sH VWChvCUoH4ZiZ+TpHgXUSAXU7xnpLs9IFipBQIVSadVQ+yJQw5 JQeHBXCTVMQJ1UQLnKUPJpUmTThIWSTJNKqEMOyulBaSIONcGD oo+4otqIK0PVIeLooEQjbkzfiMtIpklOl4hTD0UbcTNqI67a3J WOOGHu4mWTGNwJIk1ClRE3pRRxPjLipKD4Efc7d1VFnKrczSjk 7kUllCDi9MxdOwtFF3FV5G6ACoob3K6aRdyW2oijyd0RDVAhDb krFnGyUHpGXFY84taINIkQgzta74grQ6mMOBkoQcQtsjPSU4q4 C/mIg2r51tWyXhFn+GopGnE7lGkC1bJO1VIm4vSulqojDqqlhm opE3FVVku9Ig6qJVTLZqyWoqenhqiWKiNOJnclIw6qZatXS30i

  • by Erisian (13823) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @01:28PM (#7137621)
    For those of us in the United States may wish to remember that MANY CELL PHONES HAVE FREE LONG DISTANCE. Not that I would suggest we ab^h^huse that little detail.
  • by karlandtanya (601084) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @01:34PM (#7137648)
    I suggest that cmdrtaco designate ONE person to send an email to the ATA.

    The designated person could print Dave Barry's article as a pdf, and email it to the appropriate ATA employee. This would resolve the concern they announced after the last article.

    Just in case they don't have a pdf reader, the designaged person could open it up in the gimp and save it as a .bmp, then email it. Remember to render it at sufficient resolution that it is easily readable.

    Take email server rejections on "too large attachment" into account when you render the .pdf as a bmp. An 8.5x11 bmp, at full color will yield the following file sizes at the following resolutions.

    24dpi ~.5M

    34dpi ~1M

    76dpi ~5M

    107dpi ~10M

    600dpi ~300M

    If you are not the designated person, don't send the email. Don't send the email in many different file sizes to see where the ATA's email server borks. Don't send the email to every ATA email address you can find. Don't send the email more than once.

    From their previous complaint, I'm sure the ATA would be grateful for such a service.

  • by bobdotorg (598873) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @02:32PM (#7137923)
    Wouldn't it be a shame if this ended up in a few hundred usenat posts:

    Tim Searcy
    Executive Director
    tim@ataconnect.org

    Bill Morris
    Finance Director
    bill@ataconnect.org

    Lynne McCauley
    Director of Member Services
    lynne@ataconnect.org

    Mitchell Roth
    Government Affairs Counsel
    mitch@ataconnect.org

    Brad Rateike
    Manager of Member Services
    brad@ataconnect.org

    Jason Perry
    Marketing Manager
    jason@ataconnect.org

    Karl Jacobs
    Manager of Special Projects
    kjacobs@ataconnect.org

    Robert Fanger
    Manager of IT Systems
    bobf@ataconnect.org
  • by Brett Glass (98525) on Sunday October 05, 2003 @03:12PM (#7138229) Homepage
    Maybe the best way to discourage telemarketers is to create a public registry of their telephone numbers, which the public can then call to voice their opinions about telemarketers in general. (The telemarketers could hardly complain about this; after all, it's "free speech" and political speech to boot.) A continuous campaign might have an effect.

Real Users find the one combination of bizarre input values that shuts down the system for days.

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