Letter: Telemarketers Have No One to Blame But Themselves

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Sorry, but that last editorial about John Kerry and President Bush and telemarketing jobs lost just doesn't float my boat ("Having It Both Ways," Feb. 16). Best line I saw was that projected job losses haven't happened. Do we know how many have happened?

I blame this legislation on undisciplined direct marketers bombarding people with intrusive phone calls and trying to hide behind free speech claims. Really, nobody to blame but themselves. I was reminded of that last night on returning to an Albany apartment after time away at home to find several calls from credit card debt consolidation people waiting for me and telling me of my pre-qualification. ... Yes, I have credit cards. But each one is paid off each month. No targeting or discipline to this at all, has to be just phone calling down a general list hoping to find someone. Loved the line that all I had to do was call and give somebody my credit card balances to confirm qualification. (I love the "you've won a free vacation" ones almost as much.)

Sorry, but this is a case of an industry shooting itself in the foot several times over. No tears here from someone who indeed believes in and practices focused marketing by phone, mail, e-mail or whatever - after I've done proper research and list selection and know that there is some match between the offer and the person I'd like to contact. People who can't do that can rot. Or at least not call me.

Bob Johnson, Senior vice president and director of strategy, Creative Communication of America



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