Dave Barry Has Left the Building

Share this article:
It seems that Dave Barry doesn't like telephone calls much. Or e-mails. But he does like the U.S. Postal Service. So if you want to tell him thanks for his recent love letter to telemarketers, you'll have to write a letter. He's pretty much above any more direct contact than that. The Miami Herald columnist wrote that the public hates the telemarketing industry "even more than it hates France, low-flow toilets or 'customer service.' " He then urged his readers to call the American Teleservices Association and included the ATA's toll-free number. Since then, ATA executive director Tim Searcy said the organization has been inundated with calls by the thousands.


A fan must have notified Barry of our online story last week because there was a message posted from him on his Web site: "Gosh, that must have been awful! Imagine! Receiving unwanted phone calls! Without warning! How could anyone DO such a thing?" The Herald also wrote a follow-up story. " 'I feel just terrible, especially if they were eating or anything,' " the Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and author said Wednesday. " 'They have phones like the rest of us have phones. Their attitude seems to be if you have a phone, people are allowed to call you.' " The Herald likes to mention Barry's Pulitzer Prize whenever it can, but oddly leaves out references to "Dave's World."


Interestingly, trying to contact Barry for follow-up questions isn't as easy as it may seem. His Web site doesn't include a way to contact him, though it does sell "Dave Barry for President" T-shirts and bumper stickers. The Herald's Web site features a section on Barry that says, "The way to reach Dave is to write him a letter, using the U.S. Disgruntled Postal Worker Service." (Hmm, is he trying to help the postal service boost First-Class mail volume?) It then says you can't send him an e-mail because it clogs up his computer, so you should write a letter. But if you really, desperately, urgently need to get in touch with him, you can call a number at the Herald. However, calling that number pretty much will lead you on a wild goose chase.


We tracked down Barry at his home number (no, we won't print it) and found out that: one, he is more cordial over the telephone than his answering machine messages would leave you to believe; two, cute witticisms don't flow out of his mouth every time he opens it; and, three, he really, really hates telemarketers.


Share this article:

Sign up to our newsletters

Follow us on Twitter @dmnews

Latest Jobs:

More in Opinions

The Challenge of Changeable Customers

The Challenge of Changeable Customers

When it comes to behavioral targeting, I'm never surprised by the ads I'm served on my personal Mac.

Spoiled for Choice: Answers

Spoiled for Choice: Answers

Sterling Worldwide is hiring a new VP of sales and marketing. Should the CRM expert or the data person get the job? See what our readers has to say.

Peering Into the Marketing Future

Peering Into the Marketing Future

You've heard it many times before: The only constant is change. Not really. Sometimes, the only constant is stubborn resistance. This year we'll see a mix of both.