One of the winners of the FTC’s anti-telemarketer campaigns has posted a demo video, and I must say, it looks a bit more promising than I thought it might be. Take a look for yourself:
I should note that the price of conditional call forwarding, upon which this system relies, is the sort of thing that phone companies guard zealously.
Now if only we had this option:
In November 2011 Lee Beaumont paid £10 plus VAT to set up his personal 0871 line — so to call him now costs 10p, from which he receives 7p.
The Leeds businessman told BBC Radio 4’s You and Yours programme that the line had so far made £300.
Regulators are, as regulators will be, snippy:
But the premium number regulator Phone Pay Plus says the public should think twice before setting up their own lines.
They say phone line providers must meet consumer protection standards, which include transparency, fairness and complaint handling, which would mean clearly setting out the cost of each call to any organisation that rang: “Premium rate numbers are not designed to be used in this way and we would strongly discourage any listeners from adopting this idea, as they will be liable under our code for any breaches and subsequent fines that result.”
This is why the machine should get it: “Thank you for calling 1-900-ME. This call will be billed at 99 cents per minute, with a two-minute minimum, taxes not included. How may I direct your call?”