Friday, May 16, 2008

Computer-generated phone calls from stores

Does anyone else not like getting computer-generated phone calls about sales from stores at which they've shopped? I swear, from now on, when they ask me if I have a phone, I'm going to tell them no.
At least once a week, I get calls from Catherine's telling me about some sale or other, or that they have new arrivals (DUH! I get that same information in my email on a weekly basis). If I want to shop at Catherine's, I will shop there whether they have a sale or not (because they almost always have something on the clearance racks that I like). I don't shop at Catherine's online because what they have online just doesn't look the same in a picture as it does on a hanger in person. I refuse to buy pants there because they seem to think that all fat women have short legs (they don't carry an inseam over 30" and mine is 32").
I went to their website and filled out one of those "contact us" forms asking if there is any way I can get my phone number removed from their list. I told them that if I want to shop at Catherine's, and can afford it, it doesn't matter if there's a sale on or not or if they have new merchandise or not. I'm tired of running to answer the phone and then have it be some computer telling me about a sale. I also don't like to check the answering machine just to find a bunch of computer-generated sales calls on it, they take up space better left for more important calls I may have missed while I was out (on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being most important, computer-generated sales calls rate about a negative 5 for me).
DH and I have debated about getting rid of our landline phone altogether, but we wouldn't save any money by doing so; it's bundled with our cable and cable internet, and there is no bundle that's just cable and internet :( And we do have family that calls us on the landline if they can't get us on our cell phones (why will people call and leave a message on an answering machine on a landline, but not leave a voicemail on your cellphone?).
I've shopped at Lane Bryant and they asked for my phone number when I paid, and I've never gotten a computer-generated call from them about sales and new arrivals, so why does Catherine's do it? I mean, they're owned by the same company, after all. And does Fashion Bug do this? It's been ages since I've shopped there, but I don't recall ever getting any calls from them either. I do get calls every once in a while from Payless Shoes, maybe every other month. It's getting to the point that when I hear a computer-generated voice, or a recorded voice, I don't even listen to the whole message, I either hang up or erase it if it's on the answering machine.


  1. I don't give out my phone number to any store that asks for it - I tell them "I don't give out my number." (Also, if they tell you they can't proceed without it, I tell them to make one up.)

    I'm also unlisted. In other words, I haven't had this problem.

  2. I don't give my phone number at purchase. However, I had to return something to the Avenue last fall and they refused to accept my return unless I gave them my address, email, and telephone number. When I objected, I was told that if I refused to provide the information, I would not get my money back. As a result, I no longer shop at the Avenue.

  3. I've gotten calls from Avenue in the past. It's so annoying. I'm not giving out my number anymore.

  4. Heh, that would be SO annoying. Anytime a store asks for my number when ringing me up I just say, "No." They sometimes look surprised but they have never pushed.

  5. gourmetgoddess - Wal-Mart does the same thing if you return something without a receipt, they even want to see your driver's license. I can understand that they think they're going to prevent fraud on returns by asking for all that information. I think they use phone numbers to see if you're a repeat customer and track purchases, but all the same, from now on I'm just going to tell stores that I don't have a phone. Their data isn't secure enough anymore to prevent identity theft (although anyone who steals my identity is only going to get bills, they sure as hell won't get any credit, and they can have those bills).

  6. I am wondering if gourmetgoddess had told them she didn't have a phone (at all) what they would have done? I know quite a lot of people who don't have land lines or cell phones...

  7. bri - yeah, and there are people who still don't have computers, so don't have an email address, or if they do have a computer, they don't have internet access yet.

  8. The reason people will talk to your answering machine but not your voice mail is if you are there you might pick up. At least I think that's why they talk to my machine. Most of the time when the phone rings I don't answer it anyway if I'm busy. Even when I'm not busy if I don't recognize the caller ID I don't answer it. If there is something they want me to know they need to leave it in a message or we might play phone tag for weeks.


Comment moderation is enabled. If you're a troll and trying to slander someone or just being generally an asshat, your comment probably won't see the light of day. If you want to have a reasonable, civil discussion, welcome, and feel free to comment.
To the troll at IP: ,, your comments will not be published, nor will they be read. They will be automatically deleted. Get a life, sad sack.