Saturday, November 3, 2012

How To Do Telephoning

This is a Public Service Announcement.

This is how a phone call proceeds:

Person A dials number of Person B.

Person B answers phone.

Person B: Hello, this is Person B.

Person A: Hello Person B, this is Person A. I am calling you for Reason C, which I shall now elucidate.

Person B: Excellent I am all ears.

You may have noticed something quite significant about the above, namely that Person A is a person, and when Person B answers the phone, Person A speaks to Person B, and tells Person B why they're calling.

This is NOT how a phone call proceeds:

Person A sets computer to automatically dial number of Person B.

Person B answers phone.

Person B: Hell, this is -

Person A's Computer: Hello, this is an important call from Person A. Please hold the line while we play you some music, and wait until Person A is ready to deal with you.

Because you see, if Person A calls Person B, Person A should ALREADY BE READY to talk to Person B. If Person A is NOT ready to talk to Person B, Person A should WAIT until Person A IS ready, before making that call. As opposed to programming a recording to tell Person B to waste Person' B's time listening to hold music UNTIL Person A is ready.

Or in other words, if YOU are calling ME, you better TALK to me as soon as I answer.

Or more pertinently, if YOU are a company, and for the sake of argument let's call this company "GE", because that is its name, and YOU are trying to waste my time by calling me with a recording that tells me to hang on until you have a real person available, then FUCK YOU GE, I am HANGING UP STRAIGHT AWAY.

Do you understand, Person A and/or GE and/or anyone else who does this? I'm NOT listening to your recording. I'm NOT holding the line. You have something to say, call me up and SAY it. Don't call me up and tell me to wait until your saying-things ducks are all in a row.

Because we live in a CIVILISED SOCIETY, and this is how we DO THINGS, and I refuse to participate in your UNCIVILISED telephony practices.



Who's with me?


FreeGuy said...

YEAH! PHONE MANNERS RAGE! STOP THE PHONES! DESTROY THE JOINTS PHONES! We will decide who calls our phones and the manner in which we are called! We will not be told to hold the line by this company! Not now, Not ever!

Angela Aldred said...

My mum told me they were taught this technique at Secretary School in the 80's- aka 'age of power dressing/everything.'

You were served the telephony equivalent of a red tie, crisp white shirt and navy suit. I hope the hold music was 'Karma Chameleon' for continuity's sake.

Katie said...

Automated calls almost make me regret having a mobile, because it denies me the satisfaction of hanging up on them with unnecessary violence.

Anonymous said...

It's a way of making outbound calling efficient. You have a large call centre, not everybody answers the phone, you know that an agent will be ready to deal with the call in a short while (<10 seconds maybe) so you speculatively dial a couple of numbers. First one to answer wins the agent.

Makes sense for the call centre. Not the best experience for the customer, but on the other side of the coin it demonstrates how they value their relationship with you...

Kylie Dunn said...

I always hang up on them, I think it is the height of arrogance to think that you can call me and put me on hold straight away. I would actually be interested to know who the mindless robots are that would actually tolerate this and stay on hold (apart from those people who may do so to tell them off and then hang up - I'm not that overtly hostile).

I also hang up if I'm not placed on hold but I have to say hello three times and still get no response. I know this is how they work with dialling but you are trying to sell me something, I shouldn't have to wait for you.

Paul C said...

I've never been subjected to this, but it does sound supremely annoying.

Much like people who won't answer blocked numbers.