Give False Names To Confuse Telemarketers

Give False Names To Confuse Telemarketers

It’s not nice to lie, but it’s also not nice to get repeatedly called at dinner time by someone trying to flog you a mobile phone or pretending that you’re a Telstra customer when you’re not. If the Do Not Call list isn’t quite cutting it for you, giving a false name is one way of potentially scaring off telemarketers — or at least making them easier to detect.

The Lists and Notes blog outlines the technique, which essentially involves giving a false name for the person in the household or office who can make a decision related to that product. Not only does that make pursuing the current call pointless, it also gives you a flag if someone rings up and asks for the same name in future — you’ll know it’s a telemarketer straight away:

This won’t appeal to everyone. I loathe talking to telemarketers, so as soon as I work out that’s what’s happening, I hang up without further interaction. But if you lack my ability to ignore all normally accepted manners, or just fancy being a little playful, it’s a strategy worth considering.

[Lists And Notes]


  • Even answering the phone “Domino’s Morley”, “Joe’s Morgue. You Kill ’em, We Chill ’em” or Just simply “Hello?…. Hello?… Hello?… Is anyone there?…. Hello?… come on, this isn’t funny… I can’t hear you, I’m hanging up”

    I’ve used that last one a few times and its really funny to hear them say “hello?, hello? Can you hear me now?” back two or three times followed by “this must be a bad line, I’ll call you back on a better one”. I’ve only ever had one call back and after repeating the process, they were gone for good. Ah, many lulz to be had.

  • I’m still a fan of screening calls though the answering machine, myself. Not only do we not get telemarketers, I don’t have to deal with in-laws either.

  • +1 for Angus’s method. It works best if you just hang up without saying a word as soon as your telemarketer detector flickers. I find that if you are consistent with this you tend to get less calls over time.

  • A trick I learned from a mate was to let them rant on so you seem interested. Then at the end you say in your creepiest seduction voice “before we proceed further with the deal, I have one question…. what are you wearing?”.

    If they send you through to a supervisor, ask them the same thing. It’s worked for me quite a few times and no longer get calls from them.

  • i dont have a home phone anymore but loved it when they called me because i used them for my own amusement.

    try the seinfeld approach; when you first answer tell them you are busy but interested and how long will they be at work for. then say you wont be available til after they finish work but would be happy to call them back if they give you their home or mobile number. of course they dont like to do that which means you can say in your sincerest voice ‘oh i understand, you dont want people calling you at home’ to which they always say ‘yes’ and you can say ‘well now you know how i feel’ and hang up.

    my favourite though is to imitate characters from little britton. ‘i’m a lady …’ always throws them or ‘if you’d asked me on a wendesday’ etc

  • My favourite technique is to pretend they’ve called to buy something off me. I go into a sales pitch and start blabbing on about how I can help them and ask them to clarify exactly what it is their company is looking for. It totally bamboozles the poor telemarketer.

    The start arguing, trying to explain they are the ones selling and it’s all I can do to keep from dying in fits of laughter.

  • My favourite is to say uh huh enough to get them going then put the phonw on loudspeaker and leave the phone on a table or something. The background noise makes them believe you’re there, the lack of response means they keep on reading their sheet and you get to get on with what ever you were doing before…
    Longest one was a 5 minute hold on chatting away to thin air. He would’ve been pissed he wasted 5 minutes of sales time! Haha!

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