Archive for the ‘resisting telesales’ Category

The subway aleph.

April 21, 2019

Imagine that all the subway systems in the cities in the world were connected.

Simul imagine everything is instrumented. No privacy, every tap you open, every track of music you listen to, every key you press, every time you swallow is recorded…

Instead of planes, trains, buses, and long car journeys, you just go to the nearest city with a subway, get on at Buchanan Street Glasgow, and off at 96th Street Manhattan, or Piccadilly London, or Avtozavodskaya …

You think back to a time of analogue technology when in some places listening to the wrong radio station could get you shot.

Perhaps instead there’s randomness. You get on at St George’s Cross Glasgow, intending to go to Kelvin Hall, but suddenly you are passing through Clemenceau in Brussels, or Foggy Bottom or Timiryazevskaya. Disoriented, you get off: find a cafe and drink an espresso or a vodka. Then back to the subway…

Will reading the wrong blog lead you to being unemployable, or reducing your social credit, if not actually getting you shot?

Will you ticket work? Will your card let you into this strange system?

What language do the buskers sing in? Where are the shops that are advertised? Do you dare to talk to your fellow passengers, and will they understand you if you open your mouth? Is everyone affected, or is this purely personal?

Is the Aleph on the subway or in you? Do you dare to investigate?


Telesales resisted

November 18, 2009

I had a telecoms reselling company phone me this evening trying to sell me cheaper telephone calls, and lower line rental on my BT line. I know how these things work: they purchase in bulk from BT, and re-sell cheaper than BT does. Not a bad business, nor do I have any particular attachment to BT (though I do like their broadband service). So why didn’t I purchase this?

Firstly, I hate being put on the spot by a cold-calling telesales person. I know that the people on the other end are sitting in a call centre somewhere, and are paid by results, so I do have some sympathy with them. But I still don’t like being cold-called. And I couldn’t get rid of these people: first they phoned me while I was eating: I did tell them this, so they phoned back. I must have asked too many questions because the girl on the end of the line put me on to her supervisor.

Secondly, I like to make purchases when I want to. Not when I’m put on the spot. Not even to save money. Their salesperson explained what he was selling, and I even found his company on the net, so I knew that he really was genuine. But it was his pressure to close the sale there and then that finally got too much for me. ┬áMy innate bloody-mindedness kicked in, and I explained politely that I really didn’t want to buy, and didn’t want them to phone me back. I had to do this three times before they really took the message. They clearly believe in their product (and they are probably right as well, but that’s not the point).

So, I’m probably paying over the odds for my telephone line. So what? That’s my problem! If I want to fix it, I’ll fix it – in my own time! There’s plenty of resellers out there who package up BT lines and calls (now that legislation forces BT to open the market to them). But I’ll organise it myself, thank you very much.