Between the Do Not Call List and dropping our landline last year, I don’t get nearly as many chances to screw around with telemarketers as I used to. But apparently Roger Anderson does, so much so that he felt compelled to build himself a phone answering artificial intelligence bot to automate the process.
Anderson, who works in the telecom industry and has a better understanding of how telemarketing call-in techniques work than most, first created a call-answering robot that tricked autodialers into thinking there was an actual person answering the phone. So instead of the machine automatically hanging up after ten seconds, a simple pre-recorded “hello?, hello?” message would have the call sent to a telemarketer who would waste a few precious moments until they realized there really wasn’t anyone there.
But Anderson then wondered just how long his robot could keep a telemarketer on the line for. It turns out, for surprisingly long.
7 minutes and 56 seconds in this case.
It’s almost amazing how the guy doesn’t even quite clue in the second time through the there’s a bee on my arm bit.
The best thing about this is that Anderson isn’t hogging all the fun for himself, so if you’d like to let your own irritating telemarketers have a conversation with this thing, here’s how.
1. Press “add call”
2. Dial my robot at 214-666-4321 While you’re dialing, keep chatting into your phone like you’re trying to get Mr. Jones (“yeah – phone for you”, “okay, he’s coming hang on…”, etc)
3. Press “Add call” or “Merge call” or “Conference” or whatever will add the robot to the conversation.
4. MUTE YOURSELF so your background noise doesn’t affect the conversation.
5. Listen to the call, and hang up when the telemarketer hangs up.