Monthly archives: February, 2016

Kickstarter ends tomorrow. Then we can rest.

My Kickstarter campaign ends tomorrow! I have backed several projects in the past and often heard that “you should not expect to get any rest during the campaign.” Well, that has certainly been true for my family and a couple close friends of mine. I could not ask for more publicity, attention, or support. I thank all of you for that.

I had an old boss and friend at an Internet Service Provider who was working on a project to run fiber optic cable in a large city. He told me that there were people in that city who considered it their duty to stop his project. They would sabotage it, create alliances against it, vote nay in committees and council meetings, and do whatever they could do to prevent it from succeeding. All for no apparent reason. Well, I’m finding the “I thought of this ten years ago” people. And the “you cannot do this” people, and the “why are you so mean” people, and there seem to be people who just don’t want me to succeed.

If you don’t like or understand The Jolly Roger Telephone Company bot, then it’s simply not for you. That was the best advice I’ve read from Seth Godin. And he has dispensed a lot of good advice. I cannot expect unanimous support, but I’ve been ripped rather quickly from my protective-introvert-shell and I am working on developing the shields to protect myself from this criticism. To my supporters, thank you.

So the Kickstarter is not looking good. I must be realistic and assume this is not going to get funded. Please be patient because it may take me a while to pay the infrastructure costs, incorporation fees, insurance, and legal services in order to set up an inexpensive subscription service. I do have a lot of plans to disrupt unsolicited telemarketing. And to be funny, entertaining, and effective at the same time.

When this Kickstarter ends, I do not believe I will be able to send notes to my backers. Kickstarter does not share those email addresses with me until the campaign is funded. It is an amazing tool and has certain reasonable restrictions that protect backers. Since all this is new to me, I assume I will not get your email addresses.

So to the 600 backers, I truly thank you and I ask you to email me at roger -at- jollyrogertelephone.com, follow me on Facebook at facebook.com/jollyrogertelephone, watch my web site at jollyrogertelephone.com, or follow @JollyRogerTelCo on Twitter. I will post updates as I provide more bots, more numbers, more languages, more countries, and more options. I am especially interested in collecting your telemarketer scams in all their various flavors!

What an amazing journey February 2016 has been. Thank you!

Roger

 


Roger will be on 99.7 WTN in Nashville, TN today at 3:00-ish Central Time!

John Maddox from SeriousStartups.com has invited me to his talk show today! I’ll be on during the 5:00 hour Central Time on 99.7 WTN and also available on iHeartRadio at https://t.co/mvoJZZHMy5

We’ll be talking about the Jolly Roger Telephone bot and the Kickstarter campaign! I’m very excited and look forward to it. Thanks John!

Roger

 


Roger on All Things Considered on NPR!

I’m such a huge fan of this show. Thank you Art Silverman! It’s always nice to meet other people who love telephones too. Let’s save the landline!

http://www.npr.org/2016/02/25/468149405/jolly-roger-telephone-company-uses-software-to-entrap-telemarketers

 

 


Threats and intimidation from an air duct cleaning scammer

This is my scariest call. I get calls all the time from this air duct cleaning company. It makes me happy to think about all the time I have wasted from these horrible scammers, but this call was a little chilling when I listened to it a few hours later. I was actually worried about this guy showing up at my house the next day.

As soon as this call was over, he called back again. Now, my robot is not supposed to answer the same caller-id within an hour, but since he is calling from a fake caller-id, the robot did pick up. He said “yeah” at the beginning, and then just listened to the robot make little acknowledgement sounds for almost three minutes. CREEPY!

Those of you who have been listening to all my calls are probably tired of me talking about how we need to end these scammers. I would NOT want this guy calling you, your parents, or your kids. Thanks for your support through this crazy February. And let’s create more bots to waste the time of as many scammers as we can. You can hear a call center full of these people in the background. Making appointments, charging deposits on credit cards. Repeat.


Hello all telecom professionals!

One of the best things about all this attention from the Jolly Roger Telephone Telemarketing Bot has been that I have made many new friends through this crazy journey. Although the world of telecommunications is a small one, I don’t get to work with many “voice” people. Thanks to this robot I have met many telecom folks all over the world and I’m looking forward to keeping in touch with all of you.

For several years, I have been blogging at RogerThePhoneGuy.com, but I have never used my last name on that site. I guess it’s time to come clean and acknowledge that JollyRogerTelephone and RogerThePhoneGuy are both me, Roger Anderson.

Next month, I will attending the Channel Partners Expo in Las Vegas where I will be discussing my recent business partnership with CallsByCloud.com.

CallsByCloud is an extremely useful telecommunications testing utility. The first time I used it, I loved it so much that I have now partnered with them and have even published several training videos on their tutorial page. I encourage you to check it out at CallsByCloud.com and read my post about it at RogerThePhoneGuy.com.

And if you are going to the 2016 Channel Partners Expo in Las Vegas on March 16th through the 18th, then please let me know so I can say hello in person!

Thanks everyone!

Roger


Need more buzz! Entering the final week of Kickstarter!

Here’s my dilemma.

telephones + marketing = telemarketing

I built a robot to thwart telemarketing. I’m kinda biased against it. But now I need your help to raise money to continue to thwart telemarketing. And I hate asking for money because I feel like a telemarketer. Do you see the position that I am in?

Since I launched this Kickstarter three weeks ago:

  • My Facebook posts have reached 27,000 people. My “post engagement” is over 10,000, and I have 2300 likes.
  • My WordPress blog has 217,000 views with my best day at 45,000 hits.
  • My YouTube channel has over 1,000,000 views with 2200 subscribers, 2.8 million minutes of watch time, and 99% likes vs. dislikes (who are these 32 people?)
  • My telemarketer robot has received 92,000 telephone calls. At peak (when I was on the front page of Yahoo!) I received 67 simultaneous calls. Each day, I get between 2,000 and 3,000 calls for about 3,000 minutes of “talk time”.
  • My recordings have been heard on the radio in Los Angeles (and likely more); I have been interviewed on the radio on local and national radio programs in the USA. I have also been interviewed on New Zealand and South African radio, BBC World Service, and have appeared on Television in Australia and in-studio on TWiT.tv in the USA.
  • I have been featured online on Gizmodo, Reddit, CBSNews.com, TheBlaze.com, Metro.co.uk, PCWorld, Sydney Morning Herald in Australia, Business Insider, Washington Post, Mashable, Mental Floss, Maxim, and have been translated into German, Swedish, French, and Dutch. These are not “re-posts”, but new articles.
  • I have been interviewed for print stories in the New York Times, San Francisco Herald, and even a French trade magazine (unfortunately, none of these have been printed yet).

By all accounts, I could not ask for more attention or notoriety. I am extremely grateful and humbled by all this attention. My professional aspirations are to simply be a good telephone guy. I just want your phones to work and for you to use them and be happy with them. That’s it!

But now I can taste the opportunity to make a dent in unsolicited telemarketing – a practice that I loathe. It clogs the network, it reduces satisfaction with telephones, it causes people to change their numbers, or worse, disconnect their service.

Which brings me back to the opening paragraph. I hate asking for money. For my entire professional life I have earned my money through a simple exchange of my services as a telephone guy. This crowdfunding thing is out of my comfort zone. All this social media is too. I am confident that all of you reading this are better at raising money than I am. So please help. I only have a few days left and I am very far from the fundraising goal of $46,000. Can I make this work without the crowdfunding? Yes, I will probably make it work. But it will be much easier to build the infrastructure, partnerships, and legal protections with some working capital. I have a day job, kids, and a mortgage. And ironically, going viral has been very expensive.

Please take to Twitter and all other forms of social media and spread the word. You hate unsolicited telemarketing? The Jolly Roger Telephone Company has a solution. A realistic solution that, at the very least, turns your telemarketers into entertainment, and might even end them. Right now, Kickstarter is the key to making this happen as soon as possible.

Thank you all,

Roger


Roger appears on TWiT.tv The New Screensavers with Leo Laporte on February 20th!

It was a huge thrill to be on Leo Laporte’s show yesterday. I was on “The New Screensavers” to discuss the Jolly Roger Telephone robot. I have been a big fan of Leo Laporte for many years and used to watch The Screensavers on Tech.tv. This telemarketing robot has taken me on such an incredible journey! This is all so new to me and I was so nervous, but the team at TWiT.tv turned it into a very fun day.

The interview with the robot starts at about 35 minutes into the show. But please also watch at about one hour and 15 minutes when Leo thanks my wife for knitting a bee for him.

Eventually, I’ll figure out how to embed this video from twit.tv. For now, here is the link.

https://twit.tv/shows/new-screen-savers/episodes/41?autostart=false


Roger Live on Studio 10 in Australia!

Here is the clip of my appearance on Australian TV! These guys were amazingly fun and friendly. I never expected to appear on TV at any time in my life. What a crazy ride this has been!


Studio Ten Australia calls my telemarketer bot live on the air!

I had the pleasure of being on Australian TV this morning! I don’t have the video yet, but they called my bot during the segment and it was fun for all. I even think my telemarketer bot enjoyed it!

Here is the audio of the call!


TWO Sydney Australia Numbers to this Telemarketing Robot Thanks to Both 2Talk and ClearVoiceOne!

I asked for a carrier to sponsor an Australian number and TWO CARRIERS came through on the same day. I was just going to use the first one that delivered but seriously, 2Talk and ClearVoiceOne were delivered on the same day and both teams could not have been friendlier!

The good news is Australia will be the first international site that will have male and female robots. This is a call to any Australians interested in being a telemarketer bot. You’ll need to have a good microphone and an acoustically-friendly place to record (i.e. quiet with no echo). Please Facebook messenger me or email me at roger -a- jollyrogertelephone.com if you are interested.

I am going to be on Australian television tomorrow morning, February 19th, on Studio 10 at 9:05 AM! I am extremely excited about this. It is my first TV appearance! I have another scheduled in the US for Saturday the 20th. I love talking about this robot.

Anyway, here are the instructions for adding the bot using the Australian telephone number. It is still my voice with the American accent.

Thanks everyone! I’m looking forward to hearing some Australian telemarketers. Facebook message me, or email me (roger -a- jollyrogertelephone.com) if you get a good one and want a recording of it.

Thanks again,

Roger