Re: Need Help With a Telephone Mystery

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Funny, one of my numbers is similar to a Pharmacy and I get a steady,
but not excessive, trickle of people asking about their medications
(several a month) ... Well, you can't get that angry with poor sick
people, who are just trying to get some help with their medicine, so I
don't play any tricks, like some people I know do, when they get a
sloppy dialers or the poor of sight.

I feel a bit guilty, when I could correct the dialer, since they are
mistakiing one number that looks like another, or perhaps a number
gets transfigur\\red when hand written?

Instead, I tell them they are misreading one of the numbers and I get
similar calls on occasion and not to worry ... hoping they will write
the correct down after a correction and begin to remember it, so I
won't get called back again:)

I attribute the rash of ever increasing wrong numbers to cellphone users
who are distracted and I'm sure many more digits dialed from behind the
wheel or other circumstances wher the dialer doesn't give full atention
to the task.

A forgotten 800 provider seems like it could be very difficult to
trace, since it's just a pointer we pay some cellco or other to direct
cals.  Seemed like there was a centralized way to search for the LOA
info(I think this is the form used to transfer 800 numbers biling, but
I could be wrong. Letter fo Agency IIRC)

Are there any automated dialing tools for playing back the name of the
the Telco carrying an 800 line? Something like dialing 1-700-555-4141
that plays back the Long Distance Carrier. If the Toll Free and LD were
the same this would be easy , but often they are not. Or 700-4141 to
get the local provider.

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: I have always thought (here I go,
thinking for myself again!) it would be good if any future expansion
plans for the telephone numbering system included a 'check digit'
system, where (let us say someday we got expanded to 8 or 9 digits on
local calling or maybe 11-12 digits for 'long distance') the last or
perhaps the first digit was mathematically constructed as is done with
many or most credit card numbers presently. Unless the person doing
the dialing got the remaining digits _absolutly correct and in the
right order, the call would fail to complete. Ergo, no more wrong
numbers period, unless the caller just coincidentally happened to
reverse a couple of the digits in just the right order, for example as
the old multiply by 1-2-1-2 existing number, then add the digits
across and subtract the total from 10 routine is done. Likewise, it
would be virtually impossible to just make up a number on the fly and
get it correct without a lot of forethought. They could almost do that
now with our seven/ten/eleven numbers in use, simply calculate what
the check-digit would be and expect the caller to include it when
dialing the desired number, as the eighth, eleventh or twelvth digit
presented. PAT]


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