Monday, May 28, 2007

Dealing with text message spam

A couple of months back I failed to use my better judgment and unleashed my phone number onto a website that allows you to schedule a call to be made to your cell phone, say during a social event, to make you seem more popular. Let's be clear. I was just testing it to see how it worked, and for your information, I couldn't keep up with the recording's fast paced conversation. Regardless of whether this slip was the cause of my small misfortune, I start receiving about 30 spam messages a month on my Verizon Wireless phone. This was OK back when text messages (sans texting plan) cost a mere 10 cents. On calling customer service, they informed me I could fill out a form and block particular email addresses from sending me messages. Since spammers don't use real email addresses (or at least not their own), there wasn't value to be gained by using that form.

Fast forward to a couple of weeks back, Verizon increases the cost of sending and receiving text messages by 50% (sans texting plan). I'm starting to think of switching to Cingular and using an upcoming Apple iPhone just to avoid paying the $3 spam tax. Luckily, there's a feature to turn off receiving text messages from the internet as well as from

If you're a VZW customers can rid yourself of internet stalkers and spammers, go to to change your text preferences (account registration necessary).

SOURCE: Lisa from Verizon Wireless 611


Cogito said...

> schedule a call to be made to your cell phone, say during a social event, to make you seem more popular

for similar function, u d use google to remind u "event" via sms. Just change the tone of incoming sms..oopps.

Will said...

Hey Cogito, that's a good idea. But, what made the 'service' sound cool was that the recording actually engages in a fake conversation with you! For example, it'll ask you a question and it'd pause for a couple of seconds for your response. You could even put it on speaker phone if you're confident enough.

chess h said...

> make you seem more popular...

There's a reason I can think of for using this service that is much less damaging to the ego than the one above: the fake "bail me out" phone call for possible blind dates or potentially unenjoyable yet mandatory social events. Almost sounds like we're writing a bad sitcom at this point... :)

Will said...

Good news is that I've gotten no spam since/yet. Chess, I won't post any links but I think the site had your choice of conversation /: ) Definitely useful to have an exit strategy.