Following Up on Your Followup

 

To all those people on Ricochet who called and wrote in the last week wondering about how my wife and I were doing after our traffic accident… oh, wait. Not a single one of you called or wrote. You all have pretty much minded your own business and I cannot express how much that’s appreciated.

Regardless of your lack of concern over my well being, you wouldn’t have been able to reach me if you wanted to. Just this morning, between 8:30 and 9am ET there were eight unsolicited calls from lawyers and chiropractic “injury recovery centers” reminding me that every day that goes by is a lost opportunity to claim what’s “rightfully” mine.

For the longest time the only people who knew my cell phone number were family, a handful of friends (Yes, I have a few) and the crewing departments of the networks. Now, thanks to the accident and subsequent police report, I’m probably already on dozens of call lists. If I didn’t have pain and suffering in the immediate aftermath of the accident these people are determined to make me have it now. If you see a headline that reads “Ohio Man Plows Car Into Call Center” try not to be judgmental. Thanks.

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  1. Hoyacon Member
    Hoyacon
    @Hoyacon

    • #1
  2. Seawriter Contributor
    Seawriter
    @Seawriter

    See. That is the reason I keep a land line.

    • #2
  3. Jim Chase Member
    Jim Chase
    @JimChase

    Glad you both are okay – if that is indeed what we can glean here reading between the lines.  I would think that a follow-up incident involving the aforementioned call center might somewhat exacerbate your problem with unsolicited calls, but that’s just me.  Oh, and I would advise not listening to your Reds games while driving.

    • #3
  4. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    It’s not our imagination that marketing has become far more personal suddenly and more insistent and frequent.

    It’s getting scary out there. My husband has been getting calls from people with noticeably foreign accents asking him about our “national grid” account. These callers have accurate information about our home and our account. My husband has put the callers on the speaker phone setting so I can hear them too. At the end, the callers ask for personal account information, which makes my husband laugh and hang up. He has been saying to me for the past month, “Under no circumstances ever say the word ‘yes’ to these robo callers.” For some reason, a recorded “yes” will entitle the callers to clean out our financial assets. I worry that they are so accurate that many people who get such calls will believe they are real. It’s hard not to think that.

    There have been recent tremendous changes in how big data is being used, and it is why Facebook is under the gun right now. Facebook was formed in 2004. In the fifteen years it has been in operation, it has amassed an amazing amount of data on us. None of us worried too much about big data because it was anonymous. In order for businesses or the government to be able to use the data in any way, they would have to be able to put it together with a name, not just an Internet provider (IP) address.

    But there is now a company called Acxiom that can bridge that gap. Today much of that data can be paired to individuals by name. Furthermore, Nielsen and Facebook have some sort of new relationship and new machine-learning programs that will create targeted ads and marketing push pieces at lightening speed. These are new additions to the marketing and advertising practices people are used to dealing with.

    I read a book this past winter that was both scary and fascinating on how companies will be marketing to us in the future. It’s by William Ammerman, and it’s called The Invisible Brand: Marketing in the Age of Automation, Big Data, and Machine Learning. The last third of the book brings up the ethical dilemmas we are facing as business owners, consumers, and voters with these rapidly occurring changes in how the world works.

    My opinion is that any and all personal data should be created and stored with a self-destruct instruction that kicks in after six months with no exceptions. When we all agreed to let businesses collect and store information on us, we were under the impression that it could not be connected to us personally. Because that has changed, I want to see these data collections destroyed periodically.

    • #4
  5. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    We follow a policy for our home phone and cell phones: if you don’t recognize the number, don’t answer.  Combined with voicemail, this works for us.

    • #5
  6. Dr. Bastiat Member
    Dr. Bastiat
    @drbastiat

    I’m glad you folks are ok.

    • #6
  7. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    My hope is that the suddenness of these changes will prompt the American people to initiate a national dialogue on the proper accumulation, storage, and use of personal data.

    When people realize what’s stored about them in these data warehouses, they will act, I am confident. It’s our healthcare information, our credit history, our employment history, our insurance claims history, our purchases, our Internet browsing history, our media consumption, our online matchmaking and dating history, and our DNA profile. Artificial intelligence bots will be able to manipulate that stored data in ways we cannot imagine right now.

    • #7
  8. Hoyacon Member
    Hoyacon
    @Hoyacon

    Stad (View Comment):

    We follow a policy for our home phone and cell phones: if you don’t recognize the number, don’t answer. Combined with voicemail, this works for us.

    Our policy as well, but it may not work forever because of spoofing.  I actually received a call from myself (per caller ID) the other day.  It’s probably a matter of time before calls come from recognizable numbers/names that aren’t actually those persons.

    • #8
  9. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    Hoyacon: I actually received a call from myself…

    As did I. This is a phishing scam directed at both AT&T and Verizon customers. “We need you to verify your account…”

    • #9
  10. GFHandle Member
    GFHandle
    @GFHandle

    Trump’s FCC has told the carriers that they expect caller authentication to be in place within the year or else….they will do it. And there is a bill (with prog Markey) to increase fines and civil penalties. 

    Should they also go back to making it illegal for lawyers to advertise?

    • #10
  11. Kozak Member
    Kozak
    @Kozak

    Hey, if you want to block spam calls in a fun way and drive the callers crazy, try this…

     

    Robokiller App.

     

     

    • #11
  12. Sweezle Member
    Sweezle
    @Sweezle

    I am glad you & your wife are fine. If only we could sue all the lawyers who file lawsuits to extort businesses and drive up the costs of medicine, insurance, all products, health care and numerous other items. And how do we shut down robo calls using our personal phone number to appear on caller ID?

    • #12
  13. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Dr. Bastiat (View Comment):
    I’m glad you folks are ok.

    Oh yeah, same here!

    • #13
  14. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Hoyacon (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):

    We follow a policy for our home phone and cell phones: if you don’t recognize the number, don’t answer. Combined with voicemail, this works for us.

    Our policy as well, but it may not work forever because of spoofing. I actually received a call from myself (per caller ID) the other day. It’s probably a matter of time before calls come from recognizable numbers/names that aren’t actually those persons.

    We get spoofs all the time from callers pretending to be local.  If I’m not busy, I usually check the numbers online.  Many are robocalls, but every once in a while we get a wrong number.  If they start spoofing family members, then we have a problem until we get new numbers.

    • #14
  15. Hank Rhody, Drunk on Power Contributor
    Hank Rhody, Drunk on Power
    @HankRhody

    EJHill: oh, wait. Not a single one of you called or wrote.

    How can you say that, when I sent call after call informing you of the free clinical examination and legal advice that you deserve after your accident?

    • #15
  16. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    Well played, Drunk. Well played.

    • #16
  17. Chris Campion Coolidge
    Chris Campion
    @ChrisCampion

    Kozak (View Comment):
    Hey, if you want to block spam calls in a fun way and drive the callers crazy, try this…

     

    Robokiller App.

     

     

    That’s epic.

    • #17
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