The air-horn-blasting technique recommended by the retired police detective obviously wouldn't work nearly as well as suggested, because the PSTN's dynamic range of is intentionally capped at a small fraction of that of human hearing. But some of the other techniques in this article are pretty clever.
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How to torment telemarketers
Blasting an air horn, putting the telemarketers on a lengthy hold,
for ideas on combating 'Rachel from cardholder services.'
David Lazarus4:52 PM PST, January 13, 2014
I almost feel sorry for telemarketers. Almost.
Last week, I solicited advice from readers about the best ways to get telemarketers to stop bugging you, especially robocallers like "Rachel from cardholder services," which the former head of the Federal Trade Commission branded "public enemy No. 1."
Judging from the avalanche of responses I received, I can say with confidence that many of you are not only fed up with these pests, you're more than happy to exact a little revenge in the form of pranks and time-wasting tactics.***** Moderator's Note *****
Bernis S is right: an air horn isn't effective. However, the tones from an ordinary touch-tone phone are actually /much/ louder on the other end of a call than they sound when you push the button. You can say "I'll get my wife on the intercom, and force the marketeer to listen to two or three attempts to "transfer" his call before he gives up.
It's all about money: the most expensive factor to "Rachel" and her friends is the "hit ratio" of successes versus failures. When you answer the phone, /please/ take one for the team and do what you can to waste the human's time. If even a small fraction of victims fought back this way, "Rachel" would be out of business in a month.
Bill Horne Moderator