I was getting a lot of spam calls on my cell phone. One, in particular, had been calling incessantly. I do not answer numbers I do not recognize, so I looked them up.
THE NUMBER calling was 703-637-9245. There are many reports from people who have been bothered by these people. It turns out they are Direct Line Technologies, based in Arlington, Virginia. Alumni Associations for colleges (and other organizations) use them to solicit donations.
I earned my Bachelor’s from Florida State University and have been an Alumni Association member off and on, although I haven’t received a whole lot of benefits from it other than discounts at the bookstore.
The Association used to call directly from Tallahassee, but after repeated requests for them to leave me alone, they finally did.
Now, they are back at it. So, I wrote an email to the Alumni Association that went something like this:
I have been relentlessly called by Direct Line Technologies, at 703-637-9245. They are apparently an alumni fundraising outfit contracted by colleges and others.
I do not, and never will, answer these calls and am only assuming they are calling on behalf of FSU.
If this is indeed true, please make them stop. It is possible they are scamming people by purporting to be from FSU (or some other colleges) and doing so without your knowledge, but I have complained in the past about being barraged by calls directly from the Alumni Association itself and had asked that to stop, which it has.
I have looked online for reports on this number and there are quite a few. FSU has been mentioned in some as have the University of Michigan and some others.
I hope that FSU is not using this service to solicit donations.
As an FSU grad and a father of one, I find this form of harassment distasteful. If you get others complaining, and you are not using their “service” then it might be a good idea to investigate further.
In either case, it’s really annoying.
A Positive Response!
I was pleased to find a reply email only 15 hours later. The response was very nice and went something like this:
Thank you for your feedback regarding our recent calling campaign, I have forwarded your complaints to our senior administrators as well.I will be happy to remove you from this calling campaign and any future calling done on our behalf.
The bottom line is, I seem to have solved the problem of being harassed by these telemarketers. I do think colleges should re-think their solicitation techniques as it really leaves a bad taste that the school I still care deeply about is doing this.
A Popular Subject
I loved going to college and having four degrees, from four different schools, kinda makes me a “big college fan.” I really wish the alumni associations would do a better job of reaching their potential members and offer more value. Since I graduated from Utica College, I have received nothing, nor have I ever heard from Rutgers. Maybe some alumni association person reading this will take this to heart and come up with some cool ways to engage potential members. Thank you.