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"Do not call" quiz answers

Refresh your memory on "do not call," including National Do Not Call Registry regulations, with the answers to's quiz.

1) Answer: B.

According to call center expert Donna Fluss, the basic do not call rule for an outbound call center is that enterprises can call a customer with whom they have a pre-existing relationship.

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2) Answer: D.
The "do not call list" is a registry of phone numbers in the United States that telemarketers are prohibited from calling in most circumstances.

Political organizations, charities, survey takers and companies with which a consumer has a pre-existing relationship are exempt from the restriction, although they must comply with some rules. Once your registration goes into effect (usually three months after you apply), organizations can call to ask you to take a survey or make a donation, but they cannot try to sell you anything. In the case of a pre-existing relationship, a company can call you for up to 18 months after a purchase, delivery or payment, although if you ask them not to call again they are required to honor your request. All organizations must refrain from calling anyone who asks them not to do so and must maintain their own "do not call" lists of such numbers.

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3) Answer: A -- True.
Bluegreen, an operator of vacation timeshares, is just one company that's getting creative to avoid following the restrictions of the National Do Not Call Registry, according to a recent Business Week article.

Bluegreen lures potential "leads" from kiosks in hundreds of malls across the U.S. Innocent shoppers are wooed by a sweepstakes offer – not knowing that when they sign up for the contest, they are agreeing to be called on by Bluegreen and more than a dozen of its affiliates. (Unless these shoppers are smart enough to read the fine print.)

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4) Answer: A -- True.
According to call center expert Donna Fluss, an outsourced call center is allowed to call a mortgage lender's customers because the lender already has a relationship with those customers.

"Presumably, you have such a relationship when functioning as an "outsourcer" representing a mortgage company, since you are acting as their agent and dealing with their customer," Fluss said. "However, you still have to be careful to observe all applicable call center outbound calling regulations. I suggest that you contact the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and/or the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for more information."

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5) Answer: A -- True.
The Telecommunications Industry Association's 2004 Telecommunications Market Review and Forecast indicated that "do not call" compliance will drive call center investments.

According to a 2004 article on destinationCRM -- DNC Compliance and Overseas Investment Lead Call Center Agenda -- "Part of the spreading impact of do-not-call restrictions will be an uptick in predictive dialer equipment sales, as telemarketers are forced to upgrade to more sophisticated systems to comply with regulations. "

As The Telecommunications Industry Association's report coauthor Arthur Gruin said, "That's going to produce a near-term upward bump in the marketplace of double-digit increases in 2004 to 2005. I think this legislation is requiring folks to upgrade their systems to do more things than they thought they would need to."

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6) Answer: C.
A study conducted by San Mateo, Calif.-based CRM vendor E.piphany in late 2003 revealed that executives were concerned about "do not call."

Jon Miller, senior director of marketing and analytic applications at E.piphany, told that a primary concern was their ability to replace the revenue generated from outbound calls following the legislation.

The answer, according to Miller and many industry analysts, is to capitalize on calls coming into a company and use them to cross-sell and up-sell.

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7) Answer: A -- True.
According to a recent article in BusinessWeek -- Skirting the Do Not Call Registry -- the FTC reported that only 2.3% of the nearly 150 million registered households filed complaints last year.

"Compliance overall by the telemarketing industry is excellent," said Lois Greisman, director of the FTC's division of marketing practices. "The Do Not Call list is working."

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8) Answer: A
Most states operate their own "do not call" registry in addition to the list run by the Federal Trade Commission. The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) has a comprehensive list of state-by-state do not call registration on its website.

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9) Answer: B.
In Pennsylvania, residents who signed up when the state "do not call" registry was launched in the summer of 2002 will see their numbers drop off if they don't renew by Sept. 15, 2007, according to Do-not-call list proves to be popular destination, a recent article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

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10) Answer: D.
Telemarketers are required to buy a national list for $7,000 or $29 for a list per area code (the first five are free), according to David Torok, a lawyer for the FTC Bureau of Consumer Protection in Americans hang up on telemarketers, an article from the San Francisco Chronicle in 2003. A telemarketer who disregards the "do not call" registry can be fined up to $11,000 for each call.

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