The man who rang is not with Sainsbury’s

You know it used to be exciting to see “international phone call” on my caller display.

Not any more.

No, it’s not that I’m a blase international jet setter who isn’t impressed by these things.

It’s that I’m being trained by telemarketers. Like Pavlov’s dog, I am now conditioned to expect irritation when I see that message.

Because, more often that not, it will be a call centre somewhere else in the world (I’m guessing India) trying for the umpteenth time to get me to change my electricity supplier.

Today, it’s “Sainsbury’s” with a “fantastic offer”. Oh puh-lease. No it isn’t really Sainsbury’s, its someone who has probably never even seen a Sainsbury’s who tomorrow will be pretending to be Tesco. Or Jack the Ripper for all I know.

In these outsourced times, it seems to me that brands are stretching credibility to absurdity with this kind of thing.

What is the point of spending millions on advertising and store design and undermining it by, well, lying to me? (And I mean lying, and not in the excusable sense that Seth Godin talks about).

Anyway I’ve now registered with the UK’s telephone preference service in the hope it cuts down on this kind of intrusion.

2 thoughts on “The man who rang is not with Sainsbury’s

  1. steven streight aka vaspers the grate

    When a telemarketer calls I just let them ramble on whilst I put the phone next to the stereo speakers, and turn the volume up.

    Nobody likes loud classical music, hundreds of years old, moldy and outmoded and insane classical music boredom.

    Sometimes I hear the exasperated teletormentor saying “Hello? Are you still there? Mr. Streight?”

    I just walk away and take a nap.

  2. Earl Mardle


    I’ve noticed this in the US a lot lately; people use caller ID. If they recognise the number, they pick up, if they don’t or it is blocked, they wait till the machine picks up.

    If its a friend calling from a strange phone, they pick up, otherwise you can talk to their machine. It is so customary that no-one even notices any more, they expect to wait 4 rings when calling a new number, the whole household waits till the machine picks up.

    When I get caught out by the “surveys”, my reply is that I charge for any information they want to collect, give me an order number at $1 a minute, minimum charge $15, or go away.

    Hopefully resulting in addition to Earl’s number “leave this clever sod alone, he wastes people’s time”


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