Who is Canada's worst telemarketer?
There’s no shortage of reasons Seinfeld is the greatest sitcom to grace television, but what sets the show even further apart is its ability to speak for the masses.
So when, in the fourth season, Jerry gets a pesky call from a telemarketer, he says exactly what we’d all like to.
-“Oh, gee, I can’t talk right now,” he says to the caller, who’s promoting a new long distance phone plan. “Why don’t you give me your home number and I’ll call you later?”
-“Uh, well, I’m sorry,” the telemarketer replies. “We’re not allowed to do that.”
-“Oh, I guess you don’t want people calling you at home.”
-“Well, now you know how I feel.”
Not surprisingly, it’s one of the most referenced scenes from the show, and – wouldn’t you know it? – it’s relevant again.
Rarely do Canadians get to fight back against telemarketers. Best we can do is, while someone leaves the dinner table to answer an inopportune call, scream, “Check who it is first! So help you God, don’t answer that phone if it’s not from a number you recognize!” At least, that’s the routine my parents always do.
But today is a day when telemarketers get their due. According to the Canadian Press, Rogers Communications is getting dinged $275,000 for their too-aggressive automated calling practices, having been caught spamming its prepaid mobile customers with robo-messages on how to buy more minutes.
The CRTC brought down the hammer on Rogers (who will donate the $275,000 to two Canadian schools) and it’s not the first time the watchdog has cracked down. Last December, according to CP, it charged Bell Canada $1.3 million for breaking telemarketing rules, which dictate companies can’t subject customers to automated calls without their prior consent.
Anyhow, hopefully every Rogers customer sleeps a little easier tonight knowing they haven’t been alone in getting hassled by the company’s telemarketers. Yet the ruling also lets us highlight Rogers, Bell and other notorious, ruthless solicitors.
Who routinely spams you with telemarketing phone calls? Who is Canada’s worst telemarketer?
By Jason Buckland, MSN Money
Posted by: Russ | Mar 25, 2021 9:18:15 AM
What about the influx of US telemarketers now calling into Canada and ignoring our Do Not Call list. It would be nice to see the CRTC go after some of those folks as they seem to be getting rather prevalent these days...
If the CRTC and the US won't police these folks then the US is fair game for Canadian telemarketers, I'd start by harassing Obama...
Posted by: Matt | Mar 25, 2021 9:30:44 AM
Yes, it is those calls you get from the States that really irk me. It seems that no one is willing to police these companies. I also wonder how much business these calls really generate. Seriously, who gives out credit card info over the phone these days anyways??
I also cannot believe the number of local calls I get asking if I want my ducts cleaned!
Posted by: Maryanne | Mar 25, 2021 9:30:53 AM
Now the Politicians are at it. And...when you hang up, the line stays connected to their recorded message until it is over. What right do they have to tie up your phone line?????
Posted by: Kandy | Mar 25, 2021 10:29:39 AM
I received a call from a telemarketer from the states, trying to sell me a holiday in Florida. The call came in around 11pm, (a little late at night I'd say). I thought when I answered, it might be a family emergency. When I realized it was just a telemarketer, I asked him if he knew where he was calling as it was 11pm here, and that i was not impressed, as I was sleeping, and hung up. The telemarkerter called back right away, and made a threat, saying that if I ever hung up on him again, he would come and slash up my pretty little face and throat. I called the police right away, but they had no way to find out who it was, and the number that was left on my phone, you could not call back. Needless to say, I did not get back to sleep that night, and was afraid for awhile after that, as you never really know where these people are calling from, and what other information do that have about you. I DO NOT answer any calls I do not recognize anymore. If its important, they will leave a message.
Posted by: Matt | Mar 25, 2021 10:49:57 AM
To Kandy: I've had a similar experience where I questioned the caller and he responded by threatening to call me non-stop and giving my number to other telemarketers. I just laughed because I knew it was a load of s@#t. Really, 'reputable' (if their is such a thing) telemarketers follow a script and stop short of harrassing you before hanging up.
I have since discovered a 'block' function on my phone and I use it for all numbers that I've identified as a telemarketer. As well, I have NOT registered my number with the Do Not Call List because I found that it actually increased the number of calls I was receiving.
Posted by: Karen | Mar 25, 2021 10:57:55 AM
I'd highly suggest never registering on a Do Not Call list. This is basically another list that is given to telemarketing companies to call to sell different products. I have worked in telemarketing companies in the past. Not all are scams. I do empathise with people getting telephone calls at inopportune times. Unfortunately, these jobs are shift jobs. If you're working from 5-9, you have to be dialing. Just like any job, you can't just sit back and do nothing. Ideally they would not want to bother anyone while they're eating dinner as that would definitely not result in a sale. The client would be upset just by the mere fact that you called them. At one point, a call center I was working at was selling an "anti-telemarketing device" as well as a service to get on the "Do not call list". Any one who registered on these products were them made leads out of- clearly suckers in their minds. Didn't last past the training. I have morals.
Posted by: Yvonne | Mar 25, 2021 11:08:42 AM
when I get a phone on my cell, I phone back at 5 in the morning and tell them that I will phone them again at that time for got a whole week if they phone me again.
Posted by: Collin | Mar 25, 2021 11:38:32 AM
As I have a business to business Call Person (10 am MDT - 4 pm MDT). I have to agree with most, that home telemarketers are a really pain in the rump. With that being said, any telemarketer who calls my line, I tell them very bluntly, "I hire a business telemarketer, so I give you the grace of 1 minute of my time to pitch whatever you have to pitch. Go". If in one minute they have failed to communite the top features or reasons why, I tell them to ensure they brush up on the one minute pitch, nevermind trying to keep me on the phone for wasted 5 - 10 minutes. I cannot say one thing and do another, so I give them 1 minute out of my 1440 minutes a day I am blessed with. Not all telemarketing is ill willed or a scam, relate it to a honest mechanic, or a truthful politician, you never know, you may find a good one.
Posted by: NRT | Mar 25, 2021 1:23:58 PM
I hand over the phone to my 2 year old as soon as I relaize its a telemarketing call. It is just fun after that. 'I want tonkah thruck' etc. within a minute the call drops. Try this, it really works.
Posted by: DuctCleaners | Mar 25, 2021 1:27:37 PM
BELL is nowhere near the worst offender....
We get calls from duct cleaners on a daily basis....what whole industry should be charged!!! Most annoying people ever.....
Posted by: John | Mar 25, 2021 1:29:03 PM
If I get a telemarketer, I just ask for their website. If they don't have one, they are not reputable, and if they do, I just say, "I'll check it out online," and hang up.
Posted by: Sue | Mar 25, 2021 1:32:23 PM
Rogers. Hands Down. If it's not text msgs, it's promotional recordings. It's NON-STOP. I have them saved as " Annoying, don't Answer" for my caller ID.
Carnival Cruises are bad too. I get a phone call every two days to let me know about their 72 hr sale. How long is this 72 hour sale going to go on for? I never answer, but they leave messages. Bout time I call them and complain.
Posted by: WudUp | Mar 25, 2021 1:33:37 PM
Wow - your parents are just like my parents. *Every* time we get a call during dinner, they always say, "Check who it is first!"
The worst we get are automated messages saying we won a trip to some exotic island. Our telemarketer calls are pretty random, just various companies: carpeting, Bell, T.O. Star. Usually there's no answer on the other end when we pick up.
Posted by: Jessica | Mar 25, 2021 1:44:18 PM
You can also answer and tell them to remove you from their call list. I;ve done this in the past and it has helped.
Posted by: Trixie | Mar 25, 2021 3:43:29 PM
I agree with Karen. Stay off the "do not call list." It is a list and therefore someone is going to get their hands on it and use it.
Posted by: LEXI | Mar 25, 2021 4:24:02 PM
I also hand my phone to my 20 month old son when its Telemarkters or collections..lol. But I get tired or yelling at them so I just hang-up whe I "win a free trip" or whatever the call is. I got better things to do than waste my time on them.
Posted by: Rogers_Chris | Mar 25, 2021 5:09:28 PM
This is Chris from Rogers and I wanted to give everyone a little background:
The calls in question were to tell pre-paid customers that their service would be interrupted if they didn’t purchase more minutes. We believe we followed the rules but have voluntarily stopped these calls since there seems to be some uncertainty in the interpretation. Also, to avoid the time and expense of going to Court, we have come to a settlement that the CRTC has agreed upon.
$175, 000 was donated to the Ecole polytechnique de Montreal and $100,000 to the British Columbia Institute of Technology.
Hope this helps!
Posted by: Dave | Mar 25, 2021 5:14:08 PM
I managed a telemarketing program many years ago, and my cardinal rule with my team members was that we should only call people at their workplaces between 9 and 5pm. Our sales rate was 4 times higher than the industry norm because we showed respect for the people we called. Don't call people at home, after dinner, or on Sunday...period! Any "sales" you achieve will be to seniors or people who really do not need anything you are offering. I know that telemarketing can be done ethically and professionally. I also know that most telemarketing firms today are unethical and unprofessional. When I get a call I tell them yes, it sounds great, sure I will buy it, then ask for their address so that I can visit and get information about the product face to face...hahahaha...they hang up on me!
Posted by: DDD | Mar 25, 2021 6:22:39 PM
They all SUCK !
Posted by: Dan | Mar 25, 2021 8:17:15 PM
It's actually really easy with caller id. If we don't know the number, we don't pick up. If it's really important the caller will leave a message. If they don't leave a message it's not important! I love call display, it stop's me from being nasty to pests.