What do you do to telemarketers?

Inspired by this thread - What Missionaries Have You Gotten - I began to wonder what people do to get rid of unwanted telemarketers and door to door salespeople/missionaries.

The telemarketer one bugs me, I have gone from trying to politely back out of the conversation as quickly as possible without trying to be overly rude (didn’t work, they always have a line - it’s their job) -to saying ‘sorry, but I’m not interested’ (again, didn’t always work, some would say thanks and let you go, but then you get the others who give you the spiel to keep you on the phone…) -to now just hanging up without a word spoken from my end.

This is what I’m reduced to, which is sad as I’m not really that happy about hanging up on people as they are just trying to get by doing their job, professional pests or not.

My father puts it on speaker and walks away :stuck_out_tongue:

Apparently they can get fairly abusive about that :eek:

My uncle used to see the missionaries coming and take off his clothes before he answered the door… he’s mellowed out a bit now.

Does anyone have tried and tested methods they use?

I say “Please don’t call again” the second I realize it is a telemarketer and hang up. I’m on the DNC list and they shouldn’t be calling my number to begin with. Life is too short to waste any time on telemarketers.

Because of the Do Not Call List, telemarketers aren’t even supposed to be calling me. Now normally, if the Caller ID displays “unknown number” or a number I don’t recognize, I don’t pick it up. But I might if I’m bored. In that case, I’ll immediately ask for the company name, address, etc., so I can send them a letter and report them to the FCC. They usually hang up as soon as I ask for an address.

I just say “Not interested!” and hang up, but I’m on the DNC list so it doesn’t happen that often these days and when I do get one they are recorded messages.

Why in God’s name do you have a landline phone? Simplest way to deal with telemarketers: Get with the times and ditch that archaic gadget.

But to answer your question, I tell them I was just about to get in the shower with my brother, or some variant of that.

I hang up without speaking once I realize what it is.

If I recall correctly from my telemarketing days (I worked in the administrative offices of a TM company), the DNC list does not apply if the list of names/phone numbers is supplied to the telemarketing company by a company to whom you have given your information. That is, for instance, if you have a credit card, usually in the fine print somewhere there is a place where you have to “opt out” of being called for offers from that credit card company, or from third party companies that “partner” with your credit card company. In other words, the DNC will get you off some lists, but not all.

The telemarketers have scripted rebuttals prepared to most common responses. For instance, if you say, “I’m not interested,” their response is, “The free trial period gives you the chance to evaluate the program with no risk.” And so on.

The easiest way to end the call if you don’t want to be rude is to simply say, “No, thank you.” There is no response for that. If they attempt to rebut, just say, “No, thank you. Please don’t call again” and hang up. There is no need to continue to engage them and waste your time, and you have been polite.

They never get a chance. I don’t have a landline, and on my cell phone, I don’t answer calls from numbers I don’t recognize.

I Google unknown numbers, and if I find they’re linked to telemarketers, I add the number to a profile I named STFU. It mutes the ring and doesn’t vibrate. Beyond my missed call notification, I never have to deal with them.

So long as they remain polite, I tell them that I am not interested and break the connection. It’s more effective to hit the FLASH button than the OFF button on my home phone. But I see no reason to be rude to them. They are doing a soul-crushing job, and in my experience most are in that position because they have little other choice, not because they want to be. Why make it harder for them?

Because there’s often a few seconds lag between me answering with my name, and them beginning to speak (I’m guessing between the computer recognising a voice, and the call being transferred to a person), if I hear silence for a few seconds (combined with a ‘withheld’ number), I hang up straight away. If they start talking and are obviously telemarketers - which is not hard to work out - I hang up without talking. If they’ve tricked me into hearing their full spiel, I say ‘sorry, not interested’, and hang up before they have a chance to continue.

I can talk very fast, so I say, “not interested, thanks very much goodbye” without letting the person get a word in.

“Please put me on your do-not-call list for this company and any other companies that you solicit for.”

*“They are doing a soul-crushing job, and in my experience most are in that position because they have little other choice, not because they want to be. Why make it harder for them?”
Agreed. I’ll quickly say that I’m not going to take part in whatever it is. Most of them take it fairly well and wish me a good day, which I reciprocate.

Once, I said, “Uh, I’m just leaving.” The guy says - when are you coming back? - and I say, “I’m not comin’ back.” He laughs and says “fair enough” and that was the end of that.

If they try to persist I say, “look I’m just trying to save you some time, get it?”

If they’re really pushy, I’ll say ok, go ahead. They’ll deliver the whole spiel, pause, and then ask for my response. I just say, “well, you didn’t believe me when I said I wasn’t interested. Maybe you’ll believe me now.” Click.

I’m more willing than most to play the “No, really, I’m not interested” game. It sometimes costs me an extra 30 seconds to get off the phone, but I guess it’s worth it to me. It just feels wrong to hang up without bringing the conversation to a proper conclusion. Only once has it gotten to the point where I had to interrupt the caller and say, “Sorry, but I’m hanging up now.”

Unless it’s a company I’m already doing business with, I just say no thank you and end the call. I see no reason to be rude about it.

I never answer an unknown number. I have been letting my 3 year old answer them recently though. He doesn’t put the phone up to his ear, he just holds the phone at arm’s length and yells “hello?.. what’s your name?”

I have a standard response: “We do not accept telephone solicitations of any kind at this number. Please put it on your Do Not Call list. Goodbye.” And then I hang up.

Just hang up once I know it’s a marketing call. My phone simply does not exist for their convenience, and I owe them nothing. It is postively, obnoxiously, rude for them to call at all and they do not deserve any form of mannered response. I don’t care that their work is tough: the mere fact that a form of employment is available does not mean that such employment is not by its very nature uncivil.

My only problem is that my work involves receiving calls out of hours from people with strong accents, so I have to be careful who I hang up on.

I agree that telemarketing is rude, intrusive, obnoxious, and unacceptable. But I don’t see any reason to “do” anything to telemarketers. Like the OP’s father putting them on speaker–is he trying to punish them or something? Doing something mean to the guy on the other end of the phone won’t change anything. (and I don’t count just hanging up as “mean.”)

And to those of you who say that they won’t “let” you off the phone…why do you need their permission to hang up? Hang up when you want to hang up.

I just say “Thanks, I’m not interested. Have a good day” and hang up. Doesn’t matter what rebuttals they might use because I don’t wait for them to respond.

Last time I got a car-warranty scam call, I was at my computer, so I pulled up the Rickroll song on Youtube and put the phone up to the speaker once I got to the human. One other time I talked to them and asked them why they didn’t know what kind of car I have, and they promptly hung up. I hate those fuckers, they don’t just call on the phone, they’re also scamming people.

I also went on their website once and filled in an inquiry form a couple times, listing upscale cars and using phone numbers and email addresses from some government anti-fraud agency in their state, and using the name of the head of the agency.