162 results back to index

pages: 284 words: 92,688

Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Start-Up Bubble by Dan Lyons

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Airbnb, Ben Horowitz, Bernie Madoff, bitcoin, call centre, cleantech, cloud computing, corporate governance, disruptive innovation, dumpster diving, fear of failure, Filter Bubble, Golden Gate Park, Google Glasses, Googley, Gordon Gekko, hiring and firing, Jeff Bezos, Lean Startup, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, minimum viable product, new economy, Paul Graham, pre–internet, quantitative easing, ride hailing / ride sharing, Rosa Parks, Sand Hill Road, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, Snapchat, software as a service, South of Market, San Francisco, Stanford prison experiment, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, telemarketer, tulip mania, uber lyft, Y Combinator, éminence grise

“You’d try to do something, like run a query, and the system would just blow to shit. Every day there was an outage.” But Halligan knew how to sell. Among his first hires were a head of marketing and a head of sales. Those guys assembled an old-fashioned phone sales operation, with an army of low-paid telemarketers who would badger companies into signing up for a one-year subscription. The salespeople targeted small business owners, whose needs were relatively simple and who were, typically, not very tech savvy. Eventually some customers would become disenchanted with the software and refuse to renew for a second year. By then HubSpot’s telemarketers would have found new customers to replace the ones who were leaving. By 2011, HubSpot had about five thousand customers. That year, the company raised a new round of funding and used the money to acquire a company with good engineers.

I can’t tell if the people around me actually believe this rubbish we’re being fed. They seem to, but maybe they’re just playing along. As for me, I am completely transfixed. I’ve never seen or heard anything like this. Have you ever received a call from one of those annoying telemarketers and wondered what it must be like on his end of the phone? How many people are in the room where he is sitting? How does he talk people into buying whatever he’s selling? How did he learn how to do this? How does he rationalize what he does? The online version of that telemarketer’s world is the one that I’ve now entered. I’m in the Land of Spam, learning how to send email to lists of names in the hope that some teeny tiny percentage of the recipients will open my message and buy something. It’s appalling, but also fascinating. I have to learn more.

He stands ten feet away from me, wearing a headset and reciting variations of that script, again and again, all day long, in a booming voice. He laughs, he roars, he cracks himself up. He asks questions, gets hung up on, dials again. All. Day. Long. There are dozens more like him in this room. This is the telemarketing center, and it reminds me of the boiler-room operations you see in the movies, with people arranged in rows, some standing, some sitting, packed in close to each other, barking into headsets. Imagine Glengarry Glen Ross, but instead of four sales guys there are a hundred, and they are all in their early twenties, all talking at once, all saying the same things, over and over again. To be sure, the telemarketers at HubSpot are not selling penny stocks or fake real estate. They are selling a real product. I don’t see anything fraudulent or illegal in what they are doing. It’s just tacky and low-tech.

pages: 385 words: 123,168

Bullshit Jobs: A Theory by David Graeber

1960s counterculture, active measures, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, Bretton Woods, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, David Graeber, Donald Trump, equal pay for equal work, full employment, global supply chain, High speed trading, hiring and firing, informal economy, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, knowledge worker, moral panic, post-work, precariat, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, single-payer health, software as a service, telemarketer, The Future of Employment, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, Travis Kalanick, universal basic income, unpaid internship, wage slave, wages for housework, women in the workforce, working poor, Works Progress Administration, young professional, éminence grise

Rather, I’m referring to people whose jobs have an aggressive element, but, crucially, who exist only because other people employ them. The most obvious example of this are national armed forces. Countries need armies only because other countries have armies.12 If no one had an army, armies would not be needed. But the same can be said of most lobbyists, PR specialists, telemarketers, and corporate lawyers. Also, like literal goons, they have a largely negative impact on society. I think almost anyone would concur that, were all telemarketers to disappear, the world would be a better place. But I think most would also agree that if all corporate lawyers, bank lobbyists, or marketing gurus were to similarly vanish in a puff of smoke, the world would be at least a little bit more bearable. The obvious question is: Are these really bullshit jobs at all?

(Even if you count industrial workers globally, including the toiling masses in India and China, such workers are still not nearly so large a percentage of the world population as they used to be.) But rather than allowing a massive reduction of working hours to free the world’s population to pursue their own projects, pleasures, visions, and ideas, we have seen the ballooning not even so much of the “service” sector as of the administrative sector, up to and including the creation of whole new industries like financial services or telemarketing, or the unprecedented expansion of sectors like corporate law, academic and health administration, human resources, and public relations. And these numbers do not even reflect all those people whose job is to provide administrative, technical, or security support for these industries, or, for that matter, the whole host of ancillary industries (dog washers, all-night pizza deliverymen) that only exist because everyone else is spending so much of their time working in all the other ones.

Say what you like about nurses, garbage collectors, or mechanics, it’s obvious that were they to vanish in a puff of smoke, the results would be immediate and catastrophic. A world without teachers or dockworkers would soon be in trouble, and even one without science-fiction writers or ska musicians would clearly be a lesser place. It’s not entirely clear how humanity would suffer were all private equity CEOs, lobbyists, PR researchers, actuaries, telemarketers, bailiffs, or legal consultants to similarly vanish.1 (Many suspect it might improve markedly.) Yet apart from a handful of well-touted exceptions (doctors), the rule holds surprisingly well. Even more perverse, there seems to be a broad sense that this is the way things should be. This is one of the secret strengths of right-wing populism. You can see it when tabloids whip up resentment against tube workers for paralyzing London during contract disputes: the very fact that tube workers can paralyze London shows that their work is actually necessary, but this seems to be precisely what annoys people.

Care to Make Love in That Gross Little Space Between Cars?: A Believer Book of Advice by The Believer, Judd Apatow, Patton Oswalt

Albert Einstein, Donald Trump, illegal immigration, Saturday Night Live, side project, telemarketer

Allison • • • Dear Allison: I am having trouble finding a job because I have a degree in English and everyone knows that is a fake degree. Should I do telemarketing or just let the earth have me? Michelle Portland, OR Dear Michelle: I would like to help you but, frankly, your letter is breathtakingly insensitive to those of us who majored in telemarketing. Are you under the impression that you can simply waltz into a telemarketing position without ever taking courses like “Introduction to Telemarketing: Conceptions of the Sensory,” “Telemarketing Perspectives: The Poetics of American Humanism,” or even “Gendered Identities: An Introduction to Black Queer Telemarketing”? And your equally cavalier approach to taking your own life—“let the earth have me”—betrays an utter ignorance of how much hard work and scholarship goes into suicide.

pages: 731 words: 134,263

Talk Is Cheap: Switching to Internet Telephones by James E. Gaskin

Debian, packet switching, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer model, Silicon Valley, Skype, speech recognition, telemarketer

The marketing trend is to sell the entire router so the broadband phone service is sure you'll be getting a new router that has some extra Internet Telephony support features built in. 4.1.3. Adding Extension Phones Everyone loves extension phones because we hate to jump up and start running when we hear the phone. Call us spoiled by the cell phones in our pockets, but running from room to room to answer a wrong number isn't much fun. When we get a wrong number, or worse, a telemarketer, we don't appreciate our impromptu exercise program because then we're too out of breath to curse at the telemarketer. Unfortunately, your broadband phone must be plugged into your broadband router or telephone adapter, and you only have one of those units. Certain digital phones can be plugged directly into your Ethernet network, but you probably don't have Ethernet RJ-45 ports all over your house, either. Answer? Go cordless. Not just so you can carry the phone around the house, but because new cordless phones include optional handsets that you can put all over the house.

(VoicePulse now offers this service, which they call Line Unavailable Forwarding.) 911 Dialing Not exactly the same as the 911 that the telephone company provides, but close. (See "911 Support," later in this chapter). Refer-A-Friend Convince a friend to sign up for your broadband phone service, and your service will reward you. Check out Table 5-1 for more details. VoicePulse offers Telemarketer Block, which may be worth changing your phone service for, all by itself. Lingo offers Automatic Call Rejection, which refuses calls with numbers blocked out or listed as anonymous, common tricks of telemarketers. Packet8 offers call blocking of anonymous calls as well. One way for companies to get more business is to encourage their happy customers to become salespeople. Car dealers call these "bird dog fees" (at least in Texas) when you send them a new customer. For the hunting-impaired, bird dogs flush out the game, and you're flushing out new customers for the salesperson.

The marketing trend is to sell the entire router so the broadband phone service is sure you'll be getting a new router that has some extra Internet Telephony support features built in. 4.1.3. Adding Extension Phones Everyone loves extension phones because we hate to jump up and start running when we hear the phone. Call us spoiled by the cell phones in our pockets, but running from room to room to answer a wrong number isn't much fun. When we get a wrong number, or worse, a telemarketer, we don't appreciate our impromptu exercise program because then we're too out of breath to curse at the telemarketer. Unfortunately, your broadband phone must be plugged into your broadband router or telephone adapter, and you only have one of those units. Certain digital phones can be plugged directly into your Ethernet network, but you probably don't have Ethernet RJ-45 ports all over your house, either. Answer? Go cordless. Not just so you can carry the phone around the house, but because new cordless phones include optional handsets that you can put all over the house.

pages: 119 words: 36,128

Dead People Suck: A Guide for Survivors of the Newly Departed by Laurie Kilmartin

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, call centre, Elon Musk, epigenetics, Mark Zuckerberg, Minecraft, obamacare, Peter Thiel, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, TaskRabbit, telemarketer, Uber for X

REMEMBER: The extended version of “Enter Sandman,” allows anyone to mourn their dead mother in satisfying 13-minute chunks. The First Time You Tell a Telemarketer, “She Can’t Come to the Phone Right Now Because She Is Dead.” My parents had the same telephone number for 46 years. Every reverse home mortgage salesman on earth had it. The Do Not Call registry reduced the number of sales calls, but didn’t eliminate them. Whenever my parents’ landline rang, their modus operandi was to let it go to voicemail while they hovered over the phone. If they knew the caller, they’d yank the receiver off the hook and shout, “HOLD ON!” Telemarketers never got through, but they also never stopped trying. I was home when one called shortly after Dad’s death. “Hello. Is…Ron…K…Kil—” “Kilmartin. No, he’s not here, he’s dead.”

Morphine, Unregulated and in Your Refrigerator Dying People Get Obsessed with Some Weird Shit SHIT GETS REAL (REAL DEAD) Never Leave Your Dying Loved One’s Side Unless of Course It Is to Have Sex Dying People Can Hear Every Word You Say The Real Obit: He Died at Home, Surrounded by People Who Were on Their iPhones MY LOVED ONE JUST DIED, NOW WHAT? Don’t Call the Mortuary Just Yet: The Case for Hanging Out with the Body Overnight Your Parent Died before You Got to the Hospital, AKA One Final Attempt to Make You Feel Guilty Your Long Dark Night of Old Testament-Style Lamentations Bad News: Grief Is Not a Calorie Burner The First Time You Tell a Telemarketer, “She Can’t Come to the Phone right Now Because She Is Dead.” Morternity Leave: You Deserve at Least Six Weeks Off After You Give Death CELEBRATING THEIR LIFE Cremation: Hire a Professional or DIY? You Live in My Mom’s Childhood Home, Mind If I Spread Her Ashes on Your Lawn? For Lapsed Catholics Only: Yes, You Will Step Foot in That Church Again Our Dad Was a Vet: Can We Ever Unfold This Flag?

No, he’s not here, he’s dead.” Sometimes they would hang up. Sometimes they would express condolences. The go-getters would express condolences, then ask if Mrs. Ron Kilmartin was still alive. While they are odious, telemarketers are useful. You need practice informing someone that your loved one is dead. You’ll be saying it a lot in the weeks and months after they pass. Cell phone companies, health/auto/life insurance providers, and the Social Security Administration all need to be contacted. Why not practice in the comfort of your parents’ home, on people you will never talk to again? Here are a few responses that helped me become a natural: •Ron is not available right now, but everything he owns is. Please stop by and pick out a pair of pants. •You are more than welcome to speak to Ron. Let us know if he responds.

pages: 1,631 words: 468,342

Home Comforts: The Art and Science of Keeping House by Cheryl Mendelson

biofilm, Broken windows theory, clean water, deskilling, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, Indoor air pollution, indoor plumbing, Jacquard loom, Own Your Own Home, sensible shoes, spice trade, Telecommunications Act of 1996, telemarketer

These restrictions leave many permitted uses of automatic dialing machines, but none that poses a threat to the peace and privacy of the home. The FCC’s rules on telemarketing are otherwise rather soft. When you are solicited, if you tell the telemarketer that you want to get off its list, it is required to put you on a “do-not-call” list, which is good for ten years, and to stop calling you. But this doesn’t stop a dozen other telemarketers from calling you; each one has to be informed individually. You will not even be put on the do-not-call lists of a telemarketer’s affiliates unless you specifically request this. Moreover, the rule regarding the “do-not-call” list does not apply to nonprofit organizations or calls that are not made for a “commercial” purpose. The FCC regulations also prohibit telemarketing before 8:00 A.M. and after 9:00 P.M., but this does not help people who work at night and sleep during the day, napping babies, sick people, and people who are just busy or troubled or whose dinner has been interrupted too many times.

The regulations do usefully oblige the person making the call to provide his or her name, the name of the person or organization on whose behalf the call is made, and a telephone number or address at which that person or organization can be reached. A second federal act, the Telemarketing and Consumer Fraud and Abuse Prevention Act of 1994 (sometimes called the “Telemarketing Act”), aims primarily at preventing fraud, but its provisions bear upon privacy issues as well. The FTC has prescribed rules enforcing this act that, among other things, forbid telemarketers to call someone repeatedly or continuously with the intent to annoy, abuse, or harass him or her; to call someone who has previously stated that he or she does not wish to receive calls from the telemarketer; to call before 8:00 A.M. or after 9:00 P.M.; or to fail promptly to disclose the identity of the seller, that the purpose of the call is to sell something, and the nature of what is being sold. (By the way, unless you tell the telemarketers never to call again, they can call you as often as they like so long as they do not intend to annoy, abuse, or harass you.)

We should not need to unlist our telephone numbers to enjoy peace and privacy and to be protected from those who want us to buy products that are advertised as available in far too many other places as it is. Besides, even unlisting your number does not guarantee immunity. Telemarketers get hold of it one way or another, and once it is on someone’s computer database, it tends to circulate. Moreover, fraud and high-pressure tactics in telemarketing have become scandalous, resulting in a number of high-profile prosecutions. Yet, for reasons that are hard to comprehend, the laws protecting us from harassment and invasion of privacy through our own telephones are not so effective as they should be, and there is reason to fear that improvement will be slow in coming. In the meantime, some telephone companies are working on a technological solution to the problem of telemarketing calls, at least for those who have Caller ID. (See page 775.) For example, some companies have created a service that screens calls that block Caller ID information and calls that show up on Caller ID as “unknown.”

pages: 562 words: 146,544

Daemon by Daniel Suarez

Berlin Wall, Burning Man, call centre, digital map, disruptive innovation, double helix, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, game design, high net worth, invisible hand, McMansion, offshore financial centre, optical character recognition, peer-to-peer, plutocrats, Plutocrats, RFID, Stewart Brand, telemarketer, web application

“I don’t know how you got this number—” “You just lost your job. I can give you a big news story. Are you interested?” Anderson just stood there, trying to decide. What was this, some sort of telemarketing scam? Was it another stalker? “I didn’t hear you say anything. Do you want the information? Just say ‘yes’ or ‘no.’” She tried to imagine what Christiane Amanpour would do. “Okay. I’m listening.” “‘Okay’ is not ‘yes’ or ‘no.’ You must understand before we continue that this is not a person. This is an interactive voice system. It can only understand certain things you say.” Anderson hung up. Damned telemarketers. Her phone rang again almost immediately. She let it go to voice mail. Psycho telemarketers. She looked around for someone who might be staring at her. No one seemed to be watching. Her phone beeped, and the text VOICE MESSAGE appeared on her display.

The muted chatter of a hundred operators in orange jumpsuits came to his right ear—the ear not covered by a headset. An unarmed guard paced a catwalk above him behind a steel mesh barrier. The Warmonk, Inc., prison-based telemarketing facility in Highland, Texas, was privately owned and operated under contract to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. It was connected to the maximum-security prison of the same name by a covered pedestrian bridge. The prisoners’ labor was ostensibly used to defray the costs of their incarceration. At thirty cents an hour, they gave Indian telemarketers a run for their money. Like almost half the guests of the Texas Department of Corrections, Mosely was black. Prisoner #1131900 was his new name, and he was four years into a twenty-five-years-to-life stint for a third drug-trafficking conviction.

What have you been in?” Mosely laughed again. “Othello at the Public, if you can believe it. Just the matinees, though.” “And now you’re doing this?” “Oh, I know—kill me now, right?” “I’m sorry.” She laughed again. He could almost hear her twirling the phone cord around her finger. “You have such a great voice, Charles.” “Thank you, miss.” TeleMaster tracked the activities of individual telemarketers down to the second. Average number of seconds between phone calls, average number of seconds for each call, average number of calls per day, average sales close percentage—all calculated automatically through the VOIP-enabled software package marketed in North America under the brand name TeleMaster, but in Europe and Asia under the impenetrable name Ophaseum. Sales associates had only a couple of seconds after completing one call before they heard the line ringing for the next.

pages: 310 words: 82,592

Never Split the Difference: Negotiating as if Your Life Depended on It by Chris Voss, Tahl Raz

banking crisis, Black Swan, clean water, cognitive bias, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Donald Trump, framing effect, friendly fire, iterative process, loss aversion, market fundamentalism, price anchoring, telemarketer, ultimatum game, uranium enrichment

And because these accusations often sound exaggerated when said aloud, speaking them will encourage the other person to claim that quite the opposite is true. ■Remember you’re dealing with a person who wants to be appreciated and understood. So use labels to reinforce and encourage positive perceptions and dynamics. CHAPTER 4 BEWARE “YES”—MASTER “NO” Let me paint a scenario we’ve all experienced: You’re at home, just before dinner, and the phone rings. It is, no surprise, a telemarketer. He wants to sell you magazine subscriptions, water filters, frozen Argentine beef—to be honest, it doesn’t matter, as the script is always the same. After butchering your name, and engaging in some disingenuous pleasantries, he launches into his pitch. The hard sell that comes next is a scripted flowchart designed to cut off your escape routes as it funnels you down a path with no exit but “Yes.”

Then she smiled. “You get the next position.” At that time, there were five other people aiming for the same slot, people who had psychology degrees, experience, and credentials. But I was on the road to the next hostage negotiation training course at the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia, ahead of everybody else. My career as a negotiator had officially begun. “NO” IS PROTECTION Think back to the telemarketer at the beginning of this chapter. The obvious reply to his question—“Do you enjoy a nice glass of water?”—is “Yes.” But all you want to do is scream, “No!” After a question like that you just know the rest of the phone call is going to be painful. That, in a nutshell, distills the inherent contradictions in the values we give “Yes” and “No.” Whenever we negotiate, there’s no doubt we want to finish with a “Yes.”

Gun for a “Yes” straight off the bat, though, and your counterpart gets defensive, wary, and skittish. That’s why I tell my students that, if you’re trying to sell something, don’t start with “Do you have a few minutes to talk?” Instead ask, “Is now a bad time to talk?” Either you get “Yes, it is a bad time” followed by a good time or a request to go away, or you get “No, it’s not” and total focus. As an exercise, the next time you get a telemarketing call, write down the questions the seller asks. I promise you’ll find that your level of discomfort correlates directly to how quickly he pushes you for “Yes.” My colleague Marti Evelsizer was the one who first opened my eyes to why “No” was better than “Yes.” Marti was the FBI’s Crisis Negotiation Coordinator in Pittsburgh at the time. She was a dynamo and a negotiating genius, which earned her huge respect both within the Bureau and with the local police.

pages: 247 words: 62,845

VoIP Telephony with Asterisk by Unknown

call centre, Debian, framing effect, packet switching, telemarketer

Asterisk can be used for many things and has features includin Private Branch Exchange (PBX) Voicemail Services with Directory Conferencing Server Packet Voice Server Encryption of Telephone or Fax Calls Heterogeneous Voice over IP gateway (H.323, SIP, MGCP, IAX) Custom Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system Soft switch Number Translation Calling Card Server Predictive Dialer Call Queueing with Remote Agents Gateway and Aggregation for Legacy PBX systems Remote Office or User Telephone Services PBX long distance Gateway Telemarketing Block Standalone Voicemail System Many of the world's largest telephone companies have committed to replacing their existing circuit switched systems with packet switched voice over IP systems. Many phone companies are alread transporting a significant portion of their traffic with IP. Many calls made over telephone compan equipment are already being transported with IP. Packet switched voice over IP systems are in principle as efficient as a synchronous circuit switched systems, but only recently have they had the potential to achieve the same level of reliability as the public switched telephone network or proprietaryPBX equipment.

SoftHangup: Soft Hangup Applicatio StopMonitor: Stop monitoring a channe StopPlaytones: Stop playing a tone lis StripLSD: Strip Least Significant Digit StripMSD: Strip leading digit SubString: Save substring digits in a given variabl Suffix: Append trailing digit System: Execute a system comman Transfer: Transfer caller to remote extensio VoiceMail: Leave a voicemail messag VoiceMail2: (deprecated) Leave a voicemail messag VoiceMailMain: Enter voicemail syste VoiceMailMain2: (deprecated) Enter voicemail syste Wait: Waits for some tim WaitForRing: Wait for Ring Applicatio WaitMusicOnHold: Wait, playing Music On Hol Zapateller: Block telemarketers with SI ZapBarge: Barge in (monitor) Zap channe ZapRAS: Executes ZaptelISDN RAS application Here are the the same applications listed by group. General commands ADSIProg: Load Asterisk ADSI Scripts into phon Authenticate: Authenticate a use ChangeMonitor: Change monitoring filename of a channe GetCPEID: Get ADSI CPE I SendDTMF: Sends arbitrary DTMF digit SendImage: Send an image fil SendURL: Send a URL System: Execute a system comman Transfer: Transfercaller to remote extension Wait: Waits for some tim WaitForRing: Wait for Ring Applicatio WaitMusicOnHold: Wait, playing Music On Hol Billin NoCDR: Make sure asterisk doesn't save CDR for a certain cal ResetCDR: Reset CDR dat SetAccount: Sets account cod Asterisk cmd SetCDRUserField: Set CDR User fiel Asterisk cmd AppendCDRUserField: Append data to CDR User fiel Call management (hangup, answer, dial, etc) Answer: Answer a channel if ringin Busy: Indicate busy condition and sto Congestion: Indicate congestion and sto Dial: Place an call and connect to the current channel DISA: DISA (Direct Inward SystemAccess) Hangup: Unconditional hangu Caller presentation (ID, Name etc CallingPres: Change the presentation for the calleri LookupBlacklist: Look up Caller*ID name/number from blacklist databas LookupCIDName: Look up CallerID Name from local databas PrivacyManager: Require phone number to be entered, if no CallerID?

General commands ADSIProg: Load Asterisk ADSI Scripts into phon Authenticate: Authenticate a use ChangeMonitor: Change monitoring filename of a channe GetCPEID: Get ADSI CPE I SendDTMF: Sends arbitrary DTMF digit SendImage: Send an image fil SendURL: Send a URL System: Execute a system comman Transfer: Transfercaller to remote extension Wait: Waits for some tim WaitForRing: Wait for Ring Applicatio WaitMusicOnHold: Wait, playing Music On Hol Billin NoCDR: Make sure asterisk doesn't save CDR for a certain cal ResetCDR: Reset CDR dat SetAccount: Sets account cod Asterisk cmd SetCDRUserField: Set CDR User fiel Asterisk cmd AppendCDRUserField: Append data to CDR User fiel Call management (hangup, answer, dial, etc) Answer: Answer a channel if ringin Busy: Indicate busy condition and sto Congestion: Indicate congestion and sto Dial: Place an call and connect to the current channel DISA: DISA (Direct Inward SystemAccess) Hangup: Unconditional hangu Caller presentation (ID, Name etc CallingPres: Change the presentation for the calleri LookupBlacklist: Look up Caller*ID name/number from blacklist databas LookupCIDName: Look up CallerID Name from local databas PrivacyManager: Require phone number to be entered, if no CallerID? sen Ringing: Indicate ringing ton SetCallerID: Set CallerID SetCIDName: Set CallerID Name SoftHangup: Request hangup on another channe Zapateller: Block telemarketers with SI Database handling DBdel: Delete a key from the databas DBdeltree: Delete a family or keytree from the databas DBget: Retrieve a value from the databas DBput: Store a value in the databas Extension logic - strings, application integratio AbsoluteTimeout: Set absolute maximum time of cal AGI: Executes an AGI compliant applicatio Cut: String handling functio DigitTimeout: Set maximum timeout between digit EAGI: Executes an AGI compliant applicatio EnumLookup: Lookup number in ENU Goto: Goto a particular priority, extension, or contex GotoIf: Conditional got GotoIfTime: Conditional goto on current tim Macro: Macro Implementatio NoOp: No operatio Prefix: Prepend leading digits (Obsolete Random: Make a random jump in your dial pla Read: Read a variable with DTM ResponseTimeout: Set maximum timeout awaiting respons SetGlobalVar: Set variable to valu SetVar: Set variable to valu StripLSD: Strip trailing digit StripMSD: Strip leading digits (Obsolete SubString: Save substring digits in a given variable (Obsolete Suffix: Append trailing digits (Obsolete Sounds - background, musiconhold et BackGround: Play a file while awaiting extensio DateTime: Say the date and tim Echo: Echo audio read back to the use Festival: Say text to the use Milliwatt: Generate a Constant 1000Hz tone at 0dbm (mu-law Monitor: Monitor a channe MP3Player: Play an MP3?

pages: 301 words: 100,597

My Life as a Goddess: A Memoir Through (Un)Popular Culture by Guy Branum

bitcoin, different worldview, G4S, Google Glasses, Joan Didion, Kickstarter, Mark Zuckerberg, oil shale / tar sands, out of africa,, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Rosa Parks, Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, telemarketer

I was proud of myself. By this point in my career, I’d gotten fired from that one legal job, then I’d gotten hired by a company that telemarketed for high-end tech clients. I briefly quit that job to be campaign manager for a woman running for Oakland City Council, then realized that she expected the job to be something more akin to a body servant than a political consultant, so I quit her campaign and begged the telemarketing place to take me back. They did. She won her campaign and became one of Oakland’s least successful mayors.1 I stayed at the telemarketing job over a year after that, but eventually, I realized, I had to face my real life. I convinced the HR manager at the telemarketing place to include me in a bout of layoffs2 so I could receive unemployment, and I started aggressively applying for jobs as a lawyer.

The successful acquisition of two jobs and the ensuing ten months of job-having had sort of taught me I was capable of survival. But more than that, doing stand-up meant I was happy, and despite my cynical thoughts to the contrary, part of me was certain that following what made me happy would be the right path. I got a semi-bullshit job selling high-end tech solutions over the phone. It was basically tech-boom telemarketing. It didn’t matter. I had decided to stop worrying about what my career and path were and focus on making a life that seemed rewarding. Plus there were two sassy ladies who worked there who liked to get chips ’n’ margs after work. For the better part of a year, that was my life. I did stand-up nearly every night. I did a job I didn’t care about every day, and it never gave me any problems. Finally—for the first time in this book, maybe—I was just being me.

pages: 204 words: 73,747

This Is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare by Gabourey Sidibe

call centre, Mark Zuckerberg, Snapchat, telemarketer

She said she was, and she suggested I get a job as a hostess or waitress. She asked if I had computer skills and suggested I try telemarketing. I knew that jobs hosting and waiting was a market cornered by actors and models, but telemarketing felt like something I could probably do. I was great over the phone. I had a pleasant speaking voice that didn’t at all match what I look like in person. I thought a job over the phone would probably be ideal until I remembered my failure to sell anything to people without crying. Listen, I could lie to you and say that I happened upon phone sex by accident while looking for telemarketing jobs, but who would that fool? We’re friends now! You know me! As soon as my therapist suggested “telemarketing,” I heard “phone sex.” Must be my brain disease. I liked reading the Village Voice for its articles about art shows, concerts, and stories about people living “alternative” lifestyles.

pages: 257 words: 76,785

Shorter by Alex Soojung-Kim Pang

8-hour work day, airport security, Albert Einstein, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, business process, call centre, carbon footprint, centre right, cloud computing, colonial rule, disruptive innovation, Erik Brynjolfsson, future of work, game design, gig economy, Henri Poincaré, IKEA effect, iterative process, job automation, job satisfaction, job-hopping, Johannes Kepler, Kickstarter, labor-force participation, longitudinal study, means of production, neurotypical, performance metric, race to the bottom, remote working, Second Machine Age, side project, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, women in the workforce, young professional, zero-sum game

Founded in 2011 by Gray, Byrne, and managing director Robert Copeland, Pursuit was built on a model of contracting with major technology companies to sell their products to other large businesses, not cable TV providers trying to upsell retirees on package internet-and-phone contracts. This requires training, and then retaining, highly skilled telemarketers. “You could be speaking with the CFO of a FTSE 250 business about their financial plans for the coming year, so you have to have a deep commercial and credible conversation with him,” Lorraine says, and that means “a lot of training at the beginning to get our team up to speed.” It also requires having employees who understand the economics of the business better than the average telemarketer. Employees at the average company think that “you put in long hours and you’ve done a good job,” Lorraine explains to me, “but actually, if you just speak to answering machines for twelve hours a day, that means nothing.

FOUR-DAY WEEKS DECREASE TURNOVER After they implemented a four-day week in 2015, Pursuit Marketing’s annual turnover rate dropped to 2 percent, a remarkably low figure in an industry where job-hopping is common. Not only has that helped keep productivity high and justified their higher-than-average investment in employee training, it’s also saved the company more than a quarter million pounds on recruitment. In Glasgow, corporate recruiters usually charge about £4,000 to hire a single telemarketer; thanks to the four-day week, the company was able to grow from 50 to 120 people without paying any recruitment fees at all. The four-day workweek also makes it easier to recruit people, and it makes it harder for other companies to steal them. “I’ve had competitors try to steal my people,” Goodall Group founder Steve Goodall says, “and the four-day week has kept them.” Most of the companies that have implemented shorter workweeks for a few years report a drop in turnover.

Free Fridays helps them learn about how to better pace themselves when building new, complex technologies, and that even—or especially—when working on difficult problems, it’s important to build in time for breaks and avoid burning yourself out. On Helping People Adjust to Shorter Hours Lorraine Gray, Pursuit Marketing: We have to continually reinforce with the team that there is no expectation for them to come in on Fridays at all, and we want them to walk away at half five on Thursday and enjoy those three days off. Everyone knows what success looks like in their own role; whether they’re a telemarketer, they’re in the IT department, finance department, digital marketing, they all do what’s required of them to be profitable to the business and make bonuses and sales, and so they all leave on that Thursday knowing that they’ve achieved that. There should be no feeling of guilt or doubt that they’re going to come in on Monday and be in trouble for not being in on Friday. As a leader, you have to move away from thinking in terms of getting the most time out of people (presumably as a way of wringing the most value out of them) and think instead in terms of getting the most value out of people.

Digital Accounting: The Effects of the Internet and Erp on Accounting by Ashutosh Deshmukh

accounting loophole / creative accounting, AltaVista, business continuity plan, business intelligence, business process, call centre, computer age, conceptual framework, corporate governance, data acquisition, dumpster diving, fixed income, hypertext link, interest rate swap, inventory management, iterative process, late fees, money market fund, new economy, New Journalism, optical character recognition, packet switching, performance metric, profit maximization, semantic web, shareholder value, six sigma, statistical model, supply-chain management, supply-chain management software, telemarketer, transaction costs, value at risk, web application, Y2K

Copying or distributing in print or electronic forms without written permission of Idea Group Inc. is prohibited. The Revenue Cycle 137 • Field marketing: These capabilities are similar to enterprise marketing, though these are aimed at marketing initiatives at the regional or field level. • E-marketing: Marketing campaigns over the Internet are enabled here. Capabilities include catalog management, content management, personalization, one-toone marketing and customer segmentation. • Telemarketing: Telemarketing capabilities using call lists and interactive scripts are enabled in this function. • Channel marketing: Marketing efforts can be coordinated with channel partners by providing relevant information, consistent branding, appropriate incentives and measurement tools. Sales functionalities are geared toward sales teams. The idea is to establish a consistent sales process that supports sales activities.

Information on the Internet courses through various conduits such as optical fibers, telephone lines, satellite transmissions and microwave emissions, to name a few. Copyright © 2006, Idea Group Inc. Copying or distributing in print or electronic forms without written permission of Idea Group Inc. is prohibited. 4 Deshmukh Exhibit 1. Structure of the Internet Wide Area Networks Local Area Networks Telephone Lines Telephone Lines Dedicated high bandwidth lines ve wa cro ns Mi iatio d Ra Optical Fibers s Wireles Wireless Exhibit 2. Tele-marketing, t-tailing, or e-tailing? Think of the vast potential of the market — total population of 10 million, about 12 cities having population greater than 200,000 and an annual national income of $10 billion. Dreams are made up of this stuff? This is the U.S. of the 1880s. Richard was an agent of a railway station in North Redwood, Minn., having plenty of spare time on hand. A Chicago company shipped gold-filled watches to a local jeweler, but the jeweler had never ordered those watches.

All of the leading ERP vendors offer CRM tools, and numerous software vendors sell CRM tools for organizations of all sizes, Copyright © 2006, Idea Group Inc. Copying or distributing in print or electronic forms without written permission of Idea Group Inc. is prohibited. 136 Deshmukh Exhibit 4. The functional view of SAP CRM •Enterprise sales •Field sales •E-selling •Telesales •Channel sales •Channel commerce •Analytics •Enterprise marketing •Field marketing •E-marketing •Telemarketing •Channel marketing •Analytics Marketing Service •Enterprise service •Field service •E-service •Customer service •Channel service •Analytics Sales Analytics •Analytical scenarios •Analytical methods Supply chain SAP R/3 ERP Siebel Corporation being the market leader in this segment. SAP and Oracle tools are primarily used in this book, though different software suites are used when appropriate.

pages: 385 words: 111,113

Augmented: Life in the Smart Lane by Brett King

23andMe, 3D printing, additive manufacturing, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, agricultural Revolution, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Amazon Web Services, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Apple II, artificial general intelligence, asset allocation, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, bitcoin, blockchain, business intelligence, business process, call centre, chief data officer, Chris Urmson, Clayton Christensen, clean water, congestion charging, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, deskilling, different worldview, disruptive innovation, distributed generation, distributed ledger, double helix, drone strike, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, Fellow of the Royal Society, fiat currency, financial exclusion, Flash crash, Flynn Effect, future of work, gig economy, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Hans Lippershey, Hyperloop, income inequality, industrial robot, information asymmetry, Internet of things, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, invention of the telephone, invention of the wheel, James Dyson, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job-hopping, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Kodak vs Instagram, Leonard Kleinrock, lifelogging, low earth orbit, low skilled workers, Lyft, M-Pesa, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, megacity, Metcalfe’s law, Minecraft, mobile money, money market fund, more computing power than Apollo, Network effects, new economy, obamacare, Occupy movement, Oculus Rift, off grid, packet switching, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, Ray Kurzweil, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Metcalfe, Satoshi Nakamoto, Second Machine Age, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), self-driving car, sharing economy, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, smart transportation, Snapchat, social graph, software as a service, speech recognition, statistical model, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, strong AI, TaskRabbit, technological singularity, telemarketer, telepresence, telepresence robot, Tesla Model S, The Future of Employment, Tim Cook: Apple, trade route, Travis Kalanick, Turing complete, Turing test, uber lyft, undersea cable, urban sprawl, V2 rocket, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, white picket fence, WikiLeaks

These features were weighted according to how automatable they were, and according to the engineering obstacles currently preventing automation or computerisation. The results were calculated with a common statistical modelling method. The outcome was clear. In the United States, more than 45 per cent of jobs could be automated within one to two decades. Table 2.3 shows a few jobs that are basically at 100 per cent risk of automation (I’ve highlighted a few of my favourites):8 Table 2.3: Some of the Jobs at Risk from Automation and AI Telemarketers Telemarketers Data Entry Professionals Procurement Clerks Title Examiners, Abstractors and Searchers Timing Device Assemblers and Adjusters Shipping, Receiving and Traffic Clerks Sewers, Hand Insurance Claims and Policy Processing Clerks Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators Mathematical Technicians Brokerage Clerks Credit Analysts Insurance Underwriters Order Clerks Parts Salespersons Watch Repairers Loan Officers Claims Adjusters, Examiners and Investigators Cargo and Freight Agents Insurance Appraisers, Auto Damage Driver/Sales Workers Tax Preparers Umpires, Referees and Other Sports Officials Radio Operators Photographic Process Workers and Processing Machine Operators Bank Tellers Legal Secretaries New Accounts Clerks Etchers and Engravers Bookkeeping, Accounting and Auditing Clerks Library Technicians Packaging and Filling Machine Operators Inspectors, Testers, Sorters, Samplers and Weighing Technicians One often voiced concern is that AI will create huge wealth for a limited few who own the technology, thus implying that the wealth gap will become even more acute.

Low friction interfaces also have optimal presentation of information so that readability and usability are high. 20 Ian Parker, “The Shape of Things to Come—How an Industrial Designer became Apple’s Greatest Product,” New Yorker, 23 February 2015, 21 Henry Blodget, “Uber CEO Reveals Mind-Boggling Statistic That Skeptics Will Hate,” Business Insider, 19 January 2015. 22 Todd Spangler, “Streaming overtakes live TV among consumer viewing preferences,” Variety, 22 April 2015, 23 Tesla uses Tegra chips in its cars. 24 “Meet the Robot Telemarketer Who Denies She’s a Robot,” Time, 13 December 2013, 25 Taken from Bill Gates’ speech at the Microsoft Developers Conference on 1st October 1997 26 A. M. Turing, “Computing Machinery and Intelligence,” MIND: A Quarterly Review of Psychology and Philosophy vol. LIX, no. 236. (October 1950), 27 Test Car A and Test Car B became Ajay and Bobby, respectively.

Within 20 years, these devices will be AIs that have enough basic intelligence to cater for any need we might have that can be executed or solved digitally, along with interfacing with our own personal dashboards/UIs, clouds and sensor networks to advise us on our physical health, financial well-being and many other areas that we used to consider the domain of human advisers. Figure 3.11: Family robot Jibo is billed as a personal assistant and communications device for the home. (Credit: Jibo) Can You Tell You Are Talking to a Computer? In December 2013, Time magazine ran a story entitled “Meet the Robot Telemarketer Who Denies She’s a Robot”24 describing a sales call that Washington Bureau Chief Michael Scherer of Time received. Scherer, sensing something was off, asked the robot if she was a person or a computer. She replied enthusiastically that she was real, with a charming laugh. But when Scherer asked, “What vegetable is found in tomato soup?” the robot said she didn’t understand the question. The robot called herself Samantha West.

pages: 252 words: 78,780

Lab Rats: How Silicon Valley Made Work Miserable for the Rest of Us by Dan Lyons

Airbnb, Amazon Web Services, Apple II, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, basic income, bitcoin, blockchain, business process, call centre, Clayton Christensen, clean water, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, cryptocurrency, David Heinemeier Hansson, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, full employment, future of work, gig economy, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, hiring and firing, housing crisis, income inequality, informal economy, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job satisfaction, job-hopping, John Gruber, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, knowledge worker, Lean Startup, loose coupling, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, McMansion, Menlo Park, Milgram experiment, minimum viable product, Mitch Kapor, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, new economy, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, Paul Graham, paypal mafia, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, precariat, RAND corporation, remote working, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, Ruby on Rails, Sam Altman, Sand Hill Road, self-driving car, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, six sigma, Skype, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, software is eating the world, Stanford prison experiment, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, TaskRabbit, telemarketer, Tesla Model S, Thomas Davenport, Tony Hsieh, Toyota Production System, traveling salesman, Travis Kalanick, tulip mania, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, universal basic income, web application, Whole Earth Catalog, Y Combinator, young professional

For the past ten years I’d been living with constant job insecurity. In the magazine business, the next layoff always loomed. At long last, I could relax. At HubSpot, my job would be secure. Or so I thought. Within a few months, I came to understand that this fast-growing start-up offered even less job security than any of the failing magazines where I’d been working before. Turnover was tremendous, especially in sales and telemarketing. What’s more, the company did not see high turnover as a problem. They were proud of it. They considered it a badge of honor. It demonstrated that the company had a “high-performance culture” where only the best of the best could survive. Weirder still, when they fired someone they called it “graduation.” We would get an email saying how “awesome” it was that so-and-so was “graduating,” taking their “superpowers” on to a new adventure.

The money-losing business model helps explain why VCs have invented the new compact and believe in treating employees so poorly. The VC and founders are not trying to build sustainable companies. So why should they care about providing employees with stable, long-term careers, or distributing wealth among the workers? Workers are merely the fuel that generates sales growth. You hire an army of young telemarketers, who hit the phones all day long. You give them impossible quotas and “burn them out and churn them out.” Employees can (and should) be underpaid, overworked, exhausted, and then discarded. When the IPO finally happens, a few people at the top get incredibly rich, and everyone else gets little or nothing. My fear is that in their desire to imitate Silicon Valley tech companies, companies from other industries will adopt its methods and mores, including its new compact with labor and its high-stress, anti-worker philosophy.

Back then, we used tech. Today, it feels like tech is using us. Computers have become unfathomably more powerful, pervasive, and intelligent. Technology connects the supply chain to the sales department to the accountants in the finance office. Tech tracks the humans who work in customer service and support—and in some cases just handles customer support on its own, without any humans needed. Tech tells telemarketers if they’re hitting their quotas and warns them if they’re falling short. Tech decides which people should be hired and which should be fired. The company itself can come to feel like a kind of computer, a big thrumming electronic machine that we humans get plugged into. Hoping to save money, companies now automate every aspect of their organization, from sales and marketing to customer support.

Working the Street: What You Need to Know About Life on Wall Street by Erik Banks

accounting loophole / creative accounting, borderless world, business cycle, corporate governance, estate planning, fixed income, greed is good, old-boy network, risk/return, rolodex, telemarketer

And the salesperson is always ready to sell the client his or her next bonds (Mercedes). 5 6 | W o r k i n g t h e St r e e t If you’ve got some leanings in this direction, and you like cars, it might be the place for you. RETAIL SALESPERSON OR TELEMARKETER? Retail salespeople, the ones who sell stocks and bonds to Mom and Dad, are like those dreaded telemarketers who call at dinner to try to sell you magazine subscriptions or long-distance calling plans. On Wall Street they are known, collectively and harshly, as the “great unwashed” (curiously enough the term seems to have stuck). These are the legions of cold-calling brokers who try to sell odd lots (small amounts of securities) by phoning unsuspecting people at home, reading off of manuscripts and making recommendations prepared by the research analysts. Their modus operandi is just like the telemarketer trying to sell you a subscription to Sports Illustrated or Vogue. You know the pitch: “You should buy this security [magazine] because it’s good value for your money.

pages: 121 words: 24,298

The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield

delayed gratification, edge city, fear of failure, telemarketer

RESISTANCE ONLY OPPOSES IN ONE DIRECTION * * * Resistance obstructs movement only from a lower sphere to a higher. It kicks in when we seek to pursue a calling in the arts, launch an innovative enterprise, or evolve to a higher station morally, ethically, or spiritually. So if you’re in Calcutta working with the Mother Teresa Foundation and you’re thinking of bolting to launch a career in telemarketing. . . relax. Resistance will give you a free pass. RESISTANCE IS MOST POWERFUL AT THE FINISH LINE * * * Odysseus almost got home years before his actual homecoming. Ithaca was in sight, close enough that the sailors could see the smoke of their families’ fires on shore. Odysseus was so certain he was safe, he actually lay down for a snooze. It was then that his men, believing there was gold in an ox-hide sack among their commander’s possessions, snatched this prize and cut it open.

A PROFESSIONAL ACCEPTS NO EXCUSES * * * The amateur, underestimating Resistance’s cunning, permits the flu to keep him from his chapters; he believes the serpent’s voice in his head that says mailing off that manuscript is more important than doing the day’s work. The professional has learned better. He respects Resistance. He knows if he caves in today, no matter how plausible the pretext, he’ll be twice as likely to cave in tomorrow. The professional knows that Resistance is like a telemarketer; if you so much as say hello, you’re finished. The pro doesn’t even pick up the phone. He stays at work. A PROFESSIONAL PLAYS IT AS IT LAYS * * * My friend the Hawk and I were playing the first hole at Prestwick in Scotland; the wind was howling out of the left. I started an eight-iron thirty yards to windward, but the gale caught it; I watched in dismay as the ball sailed hard right, hit the green going sideways, and bounded off into the cabbage.

pages: 386 words: 91,913

The Elements of Power: Gadgets, Guns, and the Struggle for a Sustainable Future in the Rare Metal Age by David S. Abraham

3D printing, Airbus A320, carbon footprint, clean water, cleantech, commoditize, Deng Xiaoping, Elon Musk,, glass ceiling, global supply chain, information retrieval, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, new economy, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, reshoring, Robert Metcalfe, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, South China Sea, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, Tesla Model S, thinkpad, upwardly mobile, uranium enrichment, WikiLeaks, Y2K

Chad Bray, “Regulator Fines Barclays Over the Pricing of Gold,” New York Times, May 23, 2014, 6. “Metal Bulletin, 60% of voters rejected MMTA-LME online pricing proposal,” November 30, 2009, accessed October 30, 2014, 7. Nigel Tunna, interview by David Abraham, Ganzhou, China, August 11, 2013. 8. In 1992, several Canada-based telemarketing companies sold indium directly to investors at inflated prices before going out of business several years later, after law-enforcement investigations in the United States and Canada. Robert D. Brown Jr., “Indium,” in Minerals Yearbook, Vol. 1, Metals and Minerals (Washington, DC: U.S. Bureau of Mines and U.S. Department of the Interior, 1996), accessed October 30, 2014, 9.

., 72 BHP Billiton, 58 Big Bertha gun, 160–61, 275n12 Big Data (Cukier and Mayer-Schönberger), 119 Bissel, Richard, 159 Bloomberg News: on CBMM, 42 on Colombian tungsten trade, 109 Boeing, 113, 128, 130–31 Boiridy, Mia, 85 Bombs, from airplanes, 279n33 Boogaart, Gerald van den, 33–35 Boron, 21, 26, 116, 121 Boston Consulting Group, 212 Boyle, Dominic, 163 Bre-X (exploration company), 59 Britain: export bans during WWI, 162–63 tungsten, actions on during WWII, 239n28 British Geological Survey, on Chinese production of critical materials, 236–37n18 Bronze, 157 Bronze Age, 12, 157, 274n7 Broxo company, 115 Bubar, Don, 55, 64 Bukit Merah, Malaysia, pollution in, 183 Burns, Stuart, 147 Business models, need for change in, 223–25 By-product production, 79–80 Cadmium, 3, 116, 148, 159, 167, 181, 258n3 Cadmium-tellurium thin films, 148–49 Calculators, 118–19 Canada: indium sales via telemarketing, 251n7 mining workforce, age of, 85 Carbon emissions, 152–53, 266n5, 281n2 Carnegie Mellon University, 211 Carneiro, Tadeu: on CBMM, 43, 46, 64–65 lack of investment worries, 54, 64 on niobium, 44 as spokesperson for CBMM, 41 on sustainability, 152, 153 Cars, 141–48 Cassiterites (tin ore), 105–6 Castilloux, Ryan, 116 Catalytic converters, 144–45 Caterpillar, 212, 223–24 CBMM (Companhia Brasileira de Metalurgia e Mineração), 39–46, 54, 62, 64–66, 152–53, 242n6 Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), 158 Centronics, 214 Ceramics, in wireless networks, 124 Cerium, 2, 35, 74, 75, 104, 140–41 CERN, Large Hadron Collider, 81 CFLs (compact fluorescent lightbulbs), 150 Characteristics of rare metals, 3–4 Chicago Board of Trade, 101 Chicago Mercantile Exchange, 101 Chile, ore grade of lithium mines, 285n33 China: antimony production in, 289n16 CBMM ownership in, 42 coal demand in, 208 critical material production, 236–37n18 defense expenditures, 278n31 environmental issues, 153–54, 173–77, 281n2 export ban on rare earth, x, 212 Hong Kong, relationship with, 102 Japan, conflict with, x, 15, 22–25, 165 Jiangxi, ore processing in, 77, 82–85 low-energy lighting production in, 152 material production costs, 240n33 rare earth elements supply chain, control of, 32–37 rare earth permanent magnets in, 137 rare metal exchanges, 96–98 rare metals industry in, 194–200 refining in, 75, 82–85 regulatory environment, 99–101, 103–5, 202, 240n34, 288n11 steel demand in, 11 technology use in, 218 tungsten production in, 289n16 WTO membership of, 200–203 China Securities Regulatory Commission, 99, 101 Chinese Society of Rare Earths, 176 CIA (Central Intelligence Agency), 158 Circular economies, 225 Cisco, 218 Clean energy technologies, 290n27 Cloud storage, 122 CO2 emissions, 152–53, 266n5, 281n2 Coal, 149–50, 178, 207, 208 Cobalt, 3, 18–21, 25, 28, 78, 101, 121, 128, 147, 219, 235nn5–6, 260n15 Cohen, Ronald R., 179–80, 184 Colombia: mineral trading as funding for conflicts in, 109 tungsten production in, 48 Colorado School of Mines, 79, 86–87, 296n23 Committee on Natural Resources (U.S.

., 292n1 Gussack, David, 185 Gutenberg rut, 292n1 Habord, James, 29 Haig, Alexander, 19 Halada, Kohmei, 177–78, 179 Halliburton, 86–87 Hamano, Masaaki, 21 Hastings, Richard Norman (“Doc”), 210 Hatch, Gareth, 138, 147 Heavy metal, 175 Heavy rare earths, 57, 75, 194, 205 Hess Corporation, 86–87 High-performance materials, need for, 169, 171–72 High-tech products, 179, 215 High-tech supply chain, 33 Hiranuma, Hikaru, 187 Hitachi Corporation, 186–87, 189–90, 197 Hittites, weaponry, 157 Hong Kong, relationship with China, 102 Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (HKEx), 101–2, 253n21 Hotel e Termas de Araxá, 38 “How Forward Integration along the Rare Earth Value Chain Threatens the Global Economy” (Boogaart), 34 Hudson Metals, 93 Hunter, Duncan, 28–29 Hydraulic mining, 158 IEA (International Energy Agency), 124–25, 136, 208, 228–29 IFixit, 216 Illegal mining and trading, 102–12 Incandescent bulbs, 150 Incentives, for rare element production, 226 India: energy demand in, 208 recycling in, 191 steel production in, 64 Indium: characteristics of, 3 pricing of, as by-product production, 80 processing of, 78 telemarketing sales of, 251n7 trading of, 97, 103, 205 uses of, 2, 13, 123, 187, 264n33 Indonesia: defense expenditures, 278n31 illegal minerals trade in, 105–8 social media use in, 126–27 Industrial accidents, 70, 81 Industrial products, resource demands for, 179 Industrial recycling, 185–86 Infrastructure, technological innovation in, 217–18 Inner Mongolia, export controls supporting, 202 Inner Mongolia University of Science and Technology, 196 Innovation distortion, 140, 154 Integrated circuits, 117–18 Intel, 8, 168, 214 IntelliMet, 70 Intercontinental ballistic missiles, 279n33 Intermetallics, 205 International Energy Agency (IEA), 124–25, 136, 208, 228–29 International Materials Agency, need for, 229 Internet cafés, 126, 127 IntierraRMG, 51 Investments, in rare metals mining, 49–54 InvestorIntel Technology Metals Summit, 50–51 Investor types, 60–61 iPhone, 1–3, 10 Iridium, 144 Iron, 13, 20–21, 26, 29, 57, 71, 78, 157–58, 163, 176, 178, 189, 197, 200, 235n6, 294n14 Iron Age, 12, 13, 157 Iron Dome (Israeli weapon system), 13 Jaffe, Robert, 148, 208–9, 210, 212–13 Jaffe, Sam, 151 Jakarta, Indonesia, construction in, 10–11 Japan: CBMM ownership in, 42 China and, x, 15, 22–25, 36, 165 government policies, effects of, 227–28 minor metals trading in, 89–90 Osaka, pollution in, 181 rare metal security strategy, 203–5, 212 recycling possibilities in, 187 U.S. embargo against, 30 Japan Institute of Metals, 219 “Jesus Phone,” 1 Jet engines, 128 Jiangxi, China: ore processing in, 77, 82–85 pollution in, 173–75 Jiangxi Rare Earth Association, 198 Jobs, Steve, 1, 2, 3, 9 Johnson, Clarence “Kelly,” 155, 158 Johnson Matthey, 186 Junior mining companies, 49–54, 59.

pages: 238 words: 46

When Things Start to Think by Neil A. Gershenfeld

3D printing, Ada Lovelace, Bretton Woods, cellular automata, Claude Shannon: information theory, Dynabook, Hedy Lamarr / George Antheil, I think there is a world market for maybe five computers, invention of movable type, Iridium satellite, Isaac Newton, Jacquard loom, Johannes Kepler, John von Neumann, low earth orbit, means of production, new economy, Nick Leeson, packet switching, RFID, speech recognition, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, the medium is the message, Turing machine, Turing test, Vannevar Bush

Abstracting money from its legacy as a thing will make it easier for still smarter things to manipulate it, helping them better act on our desires. WHY ... should things think? the rights of people are routinely infringed by things, and vice versa • dumb computers can't be fixed by smart descriptions alone • useful machine intelligence requires experience as well as reasoning • we need to be able to use all of our senses to make sense of the world Rights and Responsibilities Telemarketing. Thirteen unlucky letters that can inflame the most ill-tempered rage in otherwise well-behaved people. The modern bane of dinnertime: "click ... uhh . . . Hello ... Mr. Gersdenfull, how are you today?" Much worse than I was a few minutes ago. The most private times and places are invaded by calls flogging goods that have an unblemished record of being irrelevant, useless, or suspicious. Answering these calls is a pointless interruption, listening to the answering machine pick them up is almost as bad, and shutting off the phone eliminates the calls that I do care about.

My wife and I spent a few years getting to know each other before we moved in together, making sure that we were compatible. I wasn't nearly so choosy about my telephone, although I certainly wouldn't tolerate from a spouse many of the things it does. The phone summons me when I'm in the shower and can't answer it, and when I'm asleep and don't want to answer it; it preserves universal access to me for friend and telemarketing foe alike. Letting the phone off the hook because it has no choice in whether to ring or not is akin to the military excuse that it's not responsible for its actions because it's only following orders. Bad people won't go away, but bad telephones can. A telephone that can't make these distinctions is not fit for polite company. If a computer is connected to the telephone it's probably used for e-mail, and if it's used for e-mail there's probably too much of it.

., 171, 172 Santa Fe Institute, 118 Satellites, communications, 99-100 Science-The Endless Frontier, 172 search engines, 134 security versus privacy, 57 224 + semiconductor industry, 72 Sensormatic, 153 Shannon,C~ud~5, 128,176,188-90 shoe, computer in a, 50, 52, 102-3, 179 shoplifting tags, 153 Shor, Peter, 158, 159 Silicon Graphics, 140 Simon, Dan, 158 skepticism about technological advances, 122 Small, David, 22-23 Smalltalk, 138 smart cards, 81, 152 smart money, 77-91 cryptography and, 80-81 as digital information, 80 distinction between atom-dollars and bit-dollars, 83-85 freeing money from legacy as tangible asset, 79, 91 global currency market, 83 linking algorithms with money, 86-88 paying-as-you-go, 82 precedent for, 80 standards for, 88-91 smart name badges, 206 Smith, Joshua, 144, 170-71 sociology of science, 119 software, 7, 53, 156 belief in magic bullets, 121 CAD, 73 for children, 138 remarkable descriptions of, 108-9 upgrades, 98, 108-9 Soviet Union, 121-22 speech recognition, 140 spirit chair, 169-70, 179, 193, 202 spread-spectrum coding techniques, 165, 166 standards: computer, 88-90, 126 smart money, 88-91 Stanford Research Institute, 139 INDEX Stanford University, 54 Starner, Thad, 47, 57-58 Steane, Andy, 159 Steelcase, 202, 203, 204 Stradivarius, designing digital instrument to compete with, 32-33,39-42 Strickon, Joshua, 55 Sumitomo, 77 supercomputers, 151, 177, 199 surveillance, 57 Swatch Access watches, 152 Szilard, Leo, 176 technology: Bill of Things' Rights, 104 Bill of Things Users' Rights, 102 daily use of, 58 freedom of technological expression, 103 imposing on our lives, 95, 100-2 invisible and unobtrusive, 44, 200, 211 jargon, 107-22 mature, 10 musical instruments incorporating available, 38 wisdom in old technologies, 19, 24 telemarketing, 95, 101 telephones, 175 access to phone numbers, 100 invasion in our lives, 95, 101 satellite, 99-100 smart cards, 81 widespread dissemination of, 99 television, 10, 99, 202 high-definition, 6 Termen, Lev, 144 Tetzel, Johann, 96 "There's Plenty of Room at the Bottom," 161 thermodynamics, 175, 176 Things That Think, 202-7 privacy and, 207-10 stratification of society and, 210-11 INDEX 3D graphics interface, 141-42 3D printer, 64-65, 70-71 3001: The Final Odyssey (Clarke), 51 Toffoli, Tomaso, 132 transistors: invention of the, 175 study of, 179 Turing, Alan, 127-28, 131, 135, 166 Turing test, 128, 131, 133-34, 135 281, 210-11 Underkoffler, John, 145-46 U.S.

pages: 235 words: 62,862

Utopia for Realists: The Case for a Universal Basic Income, Open Borders, and a 15-Hour Workweek by Rutger Bregman

autonomous vehicles, banking crisis, Bartolomé de las Casas, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, Branko Milanovic, cognitive dissonance, computer age, conceptual framework, credit crunch, David Graeber, Diane Coyle, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, full employment, George Gilder, George Santayana, happiness index / gross national happiness, Henry Ford's grandson gave labor union leader Walter Reuther a tour of the company’s new, automated factory…, income inequality, invention of gunpowder, James Watt: steam engine, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, low skilled workers, means of production, megacity, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microcredit, minimum wage unemployment, Mont Pelerin Society, Nathan Meyer Rothschild: antibiotics, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, Paul Samuelson, Peter Thiel, post-industrial society, precariat, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, Ray Kurzweil, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, Skype, stem cell, Steven Pinker, telemarketer, The Future of Employment, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, universal basic income, wage slave, War on Poverty, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, wikimedia commons, women in the workforce, working poor, World Values Survey

Rich without Lifting a Finger Perhaps, but not in every profession. Imagine, for instance, that all of Washington’s 100,000 lobbyists were to go on strike tomorrow.2 Or that every tax accountant in Manhattan decided to stay home. It seems unlikely the mayor would announce a state of emergency. In fact, it’s unlikely that either of these scenarios would do much damage. A strike by, say, social media consultants, telemarketers, or high-frequency traders might never even make the news at all. When it comes to garbage collectors, though, it’s different. Any way you look at it, they do a job we can’t do without. And the harsh truth is that an increasing number of people do jobs that we can do just fine without. Were they to suddenly stop working the world wouldn’t get any poorer, uglier, or in any way worse. Take the slick Wall Street traders who line their pockets at the expense of another retirement fund.

David Graeber, an anthropologist at the London School of Economics, believes there’s something else going on. A few years ago he wrote a fascinating piece that pinned the blame not on the stuff we buy but on the work we do. It is titled, aptly, “On the Phenomenon of Bullshit Jobs.” In Graeber’s analysis, innumerable people spend their entire working lives doing jobs they consider to be pointless, jobs like telemarketer, HR manager, social media strategist, PR advisor, and a whole host of administrative positions at hospitals, universities, and government offices. “Bullshit jobs,” Graeber calls them. They’re the jobs that even the people doing them admit are, in essence, superfluous. When I first wrote an article about this phenomenon, it unleashed a small flood of confessions. “Personally, I’d prefer to do something that’s genuinely useful,” responded one stockbroker, “but I couldn’t handle the pay cut.”

This results in scenarios where, on the one hand, governments cut back on useful jobs in sectors like healthcare, education, and infrastructure – resulting in unemployment – while on the other investing millions in the unemployment industry of training and surveillance whose effectiveness has long been disproven. The modern marketplace is equally uninterested in usefulness, quality, and innovation. All that really matters is profit. Sometimes that leads to marvelous contributions, sometimes not. From telemarketers to tax consultants, there’s a rock-solid rationale for creating one bullshit job after another: You can net a fortune without ever producing a thing. In this situation, inequality only exacerbates the problem. The more wealth is concentrated at the top, the greater the demand for corporate attorneys, lobbyists, and high-frequency traders. Demand doesn’t exist in a vacuum, after all; it’s the product of a constant negotiation, determined by a country’s laws and institutions, and, of course, by the people who control the purse strings.

Shampoo Planet by Douglas Coupland

invisible hand, Maui Hawaii, McJob, Menlo Park, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, telemarketer

But at least Jasmine is employed, her now half-time job being one of a handful of Plant job classifications remaining unaxed. So cash is flowing in. But Mark was upset because he wanted a social worker, like everyone else in his class at school. * * * Everybody does work of some sort. Skye used to do retail at the Saint Yuppie boutique at the Ridgecrest Mall, back before the store filed Chapter Eleven, then suffered a mysterious fire like so many other Ridgecrest Mall businesses. Now Skye telepimps for a telemarketing company. She calls people at dinnertime and asks them if they've done things like purchase latex paint or groom their pets recently. She has to work because she owes roughly nine thousand dollars on all the credit cards she signed up for in high school. Harmony consults on computer-system installations and he already makes more money than everybody I know combined. He's rich. I tell him he should date Skye, but he's petrified.

"Inventing a new dance is like inventing a new way to have sex," says Skye, to which Harmony blushes. The two shoot each other we're-involved glances. Skye will benefit from dating guys other than realtors and Harmony will benefit from dating, period. I worry about him reading bad pornography misspelled by fifteen-year olds over his computer bulletin boards. "I quit my job at the electronic plantation today," Skye then reveals, "down at the telemarketing hell." "She's going through coworker-deprivation syndrome. I'm helping her work her way through the crisis point." From Mink I order a twisty, tomatoey car crash of fries for myself plus a club soda for Stephanie. "How's life without Anna-Louise?" asks Skye. "Have you seen her?" I ask. "She won't answer her phone and I left about fifty messages for her so fair's fair. The situation wouldn't have turned out the way it did if she hadn't overreacted."

She maybe thought I was irresponsible in not trying to contact you sooner, but who am I to be a posse, having run off with Neil when I was seventeen (my poor mother!). The need to flee must run in the family. Better handcuff Daisy to the radiator. So I guess Anna-Louise is still concerned about you. She knows you better than you think. Enough said. Now there goes the phone! Hang on. one hour-ish later: That was a woman asking when the last time the chimney was cleaned. Bloody telemarketers (pardon my language [is Skye still doing that?]). Then I went out to bring in the garden furniture for the season. Then Norman did his duty in the litter box and needed a kibble reinforcement. All these distractions. My mood has changed now. And the sun has gone behind the clouds. I'm in this mood I feel occasionally ... this mood where there's a very good friend nearby who I should be phoning.

pages: 375 words: 106,536

Lost at Sea by Jon Ronson

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Columbine, computer age, credit crunch, Douglas Hofstadter, Downton Abbey, East Village, Etonian, false memory syndrome, Gödel, Escher, Bach, income inequality, Internet Archive, Jeff Bezos, Kickstarter, late fees, Louis Pasteur, obamacare, Peter Thiel, Saturday Night Live, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, Skype, telemarketer

“My son . . .” the next woman says. She stops, choking on her words. “My son met a violent death,” she says. “I’m sorry, honey,” Sylvia says. “Is he around me?” she asks. “Yes, he does come around you,” Sylvia says. “In fact, he rings the phone. He also drops coins around you. When the phone rings and no one’s there, that’s him. People have said to me, ‘That’s telemarketers.’ Have you ever heard of a telemarketer that didn’t talk? No.” (Actually, telemarketing companies use an auto-dialing machine called the Amcat. When your phone rings and there’s nobody there, it’s because the Amcat has inadvertently dialed your number on behalf of a cold caller who is still pitching to someone else. I feel bad mentioning it here, but it’s the truth.) “He’s around you,” Sylvia says. “He has beautiful eyes, an oval face.

Even though a sign near the door at Earls Court reads “62 percent of consumers agree with the statement ‘I enjoy going through my post,’” the mood here is undeniably panicky. Sue Baker, the PR lady in charge of the event, had told me over the phone, “People are really worried.” More and more consumers are ticking the no box. They don’t want their details passed to third parties. “The list is severely compromised,” said Sue. An article in today’s Direct Marketing International magazine doomily predicts, “In a couple of years there will be no cold telemarketing industry in Norway. Could this happen here? Well, wake up! It is happening.” Six point eight million British people, the article continues, have so far signed up to the telephone preference service, which filters out cold calls. Everyone is here, from the brokers and profilers, like Mosaic and Baby Marketing, to the myriad businesses that provide the free gifts contained within junk.

pages: 527 words: 147,690

Terms of Service: Social Media and the Price of Constant Connection by Jacob Silverman

23andMe, 4chan, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Airbnb, airport security, Amazon Mechanical Turk, augmented reality, basic income, Brian Krebs, California gold rush, call centre, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, correlation does not imply causation, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, don't be evil, drone strike, Edward Snowden, feminist movement, Filter Bubble, Firefox, Flash crash, game design, global village, Google Chrome, Google Glasses, hive mind, income inequality, informal economy, information retrieval, Internet of things, Jaron Lanier, jimmy wales, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, late capitalism, license plate recognition, life extension, lifelogging, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, Mars Rover, Marshall McLuhan, mass incarceration, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Minecraft, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, national security letter, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, Occupy movement, optical character recognition, payday loans, Peter Thiel, postindustrial economy, prediction markets, pre–internet, price discrimination, price stability, profit motive, quantitative hedge fund, race to the bottom, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, rent control, RFID, ride hailing / ride sharing, self-driving car, sentiment analysis, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Snapchat, social graph, social intelligence, social web, sorting algorithm, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, TaskRabbit, technoutopianism, telemarketer, transportation-network company, Travis Kalanick, Turing test, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, universal basic income, unpaid internship, women in the workforce, Y Combinator, Zipcar

“Can Humans Fall in Love with Bots?” New Yorker. Nov. 19, 2013. 42 Suggest responses: BBC News. “Google Patents Robot Help for Social Media Burnout.” Nov. 22, 2013. 43 Robot sales pitch: Zeke Miller and Denver Nicks. “Meet the Robot Telemarketer Who Denies She’s a Robot.” Time. Dec. 10, 2013. 47 “The point of being”: Rob Horning. “Affective Privacy and Surveillance.” New Inquiry. April 30, 2013. 47 “There’s no such thing”: Author’s notes. Rhizome Seven on Seven conference. April 20, 2013. 48 “a giant scoreboard”: Rob Horning.

Besides digital assistants, there are precedents for this kind of program—out-of-office replies, canned/suggested responses to text messages, companies that promise to maintain your social-media presence after you die, remote personal assistants with whom our relationships are so mediated (by software and distance) that they essentially serve as bots. On many customer service lines, we already use our voices to navigate menus, and some telemarketing operations have advanced this practice, using robots to give a sales pitch before transferring the customer to a human sales associate. In recent years, apps that mimic your Twitter or Facebook posts, often in vaguely accurate but also amusingly bizarre ways, have become an Internet phenomenon. It’s the Turing test as entertainment. Soon, one might choose a Google bot that promises verisimilitude or one of these more ham-fisted creations that would entertain you and your friends with a funhouse-mirror version of your online persona.

See also cyber-libertarianism life-extension beliefs and research, 5 lifelogging, 136–40 Like, +1, or heart buttons and BuzzFeed listicles, 118–19 as commercial endorsement, 31–33, 34–35 data from, 8, 10, 294, 300 as de facto legal agreement, 26–27 and human nature, 24–26 as limp pat on the back, 52 as people rating system, 190–92 scoreboard function, 48 See also retweets and reblogs like economy, 35 liking studies, 24 linkbait, 104, 125, 125n LinkedIn, 35, 165, 181, 199, 323 Lippmann, Walter, 249 listicles, 114–15, 116–17, 118–19, 123, 261 ListiClock, 118 Lithium Technologies, 196 log-ins, 160, 165–66, 182 London, England, 306 Losse, Katherine, 6, 8, 12, 48, 129, 323, 327 Luddism and Luddites, x, 48 lurkers, 49 Lyft, 235 Lyon, David, 129, 316 MAC (media access control) address, 99 MAC address identifications, 306 Madrigal, Alexis, 25 Maimonides, 179–80 manipulation to obtain free labor, 260–63, 264–65 pricing based on purchaser’s ability to pay, 318 Manjoo, Farhad, 65, 262 Marconi, Guglielmo, 2, 3 market inefficiencies, 234, 235, 240, 243, 245 marketing boosting likes with prizes, 32 celebrity-driven campaigns, 89, 93–94 consumers joining companies in marketing process, 32–33, 34–35, 58–60 Facebook slogan, 12 follower services, 85–87, 88–89 liking studies, 24 marketing as journalism, 27–28 telemarketing, 43 tradition of deception, 92–94 and viral media, 68–69 See also advertising market intelligence, 35–36, 216–17 MarketPsy Capital, 37 Mastering the Internet project, Britain, 314 Master Switch, The (Wu), 67 Matlin, Chadwick, 119 McCoy, Terrence, 68 McDonaldization of Society, The (Ritzer), 270 McGillvary, Caleb “Kai,” 70 Mechanical Turk, 90, 226, 228, 229–30 Medbase2000, 318–19 MediaBrix, 304 media recommendations, 202 Mediated (Zengotita), 120 memes advertisers appropriation of, 60 amplifiers for, 88–89 false stories, 107–8, 109, 111, 113 of Hilton and Kardashian, 67 inflationary rhetoric for, 102–3 and informational appetite, 322 from local newscasts, 69–72 Old Spice guy as, 93 as one greedy industry meeting another, 84–85 poverty and urban crime, 72–73 reworking and corrections, 105, 106–7 unemployed college graduate’s story, 220–26 Memoto Mini Camera, 137–38 messaging apps, 156, 259 Messenger smartphone app, 177 metadata, 131 Metal Rabbit Media, 213 metrics advertising, 97–99 audience, 95–96, 101–2, 103 biometric tools, 305–6 Facebook, 152, 358–59 followers, 53 hits at a Web site, 102 influence scores, 194, 197–98 page views, 98, 102 as reminder of how well others are doing, 152–53 Twitter, 87, 96–97, 348–49 unique visitors, 96, 102 for Upworthy, 102 See also page views micro-fame, 149–50, 152, 196–97, 206 Microsoft, 195, 296, 311–12 micro-targeting listicles, 118–19 micro-work.

pages: 651 words: 161,270

Global Spin: The Corporate Assault on Environmentalism by Sharon Beder

American Legislative Exchange Council, battle of ideas, business climate, centre right, clean water, corporate governance, Exxon Valdez, Gary Taubes, global village, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, laissez-faire capitalism, oil shale / tar sands, old-boy network, price mechanism, profit maximization, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, telemarketer, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, the market place, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, urban planning

He advises: “Database management companies can provide you with incredibly detailed mailing lists segmented by almost any factor you can imagine.”27 Once identified, potential supporters have to be persuaded to agree to endorse the corporate view being promoted. Specialists in this form of organising use opinion research data to “identify the kinds of themes most likely to arouse key constituent groups, then gear their telemarketing pitches around those themes.”28 Telephone polls, in particular, enable rapid feedback so that the pitch can be refined: “With phones you’re on the phones today, you analyze your results, you can change your script and try a new thing tomorrow. In a three-day program you can make four or five different changes, find out what’s really working, what messages really motivate people, and improve your response rates.”29 Focus groups also help with targeting messages.

The picture is captioned: Don’t leave your future in her hands. Traditional lobbying is no longer enough. Today numbers count. To win in the hearing room, you must reach out to create grassroots support. To outnumber your opponents, call the leading grassroots public affairs communications specialists.34 In his promotion, Davies explains that he will use mailing lists and computer databases to identify potential supporters and telemarketers to persuade them to agree to have letters written on their behalf. In this way he is able to create the impression of a “spontaneous explosion of community support for needy corporations”.35 The practical objective of letter-writing campaigns is not actually to get a majority of the people behind a position and to express themselves on it—for it would be virtually impossible to whip up that much enthusiasm—but to get such a heavy, sudden outpouring of sentiment that lawmakers feel they are being besieged by a majority.

In 1992 Burson-Marsteller created an independent grassroots lobbying unit, Advocacy Communications Team, to counter activists that threaten corporations by organising “rallies, boycotts and demonstrations outside your plant”.37 Burson-Marsteller used their grassroots lobbying unit to create the National Smokers Alliance in 1993 on behalf of Philip Morris. The millions supplied by Philip Morris and the advice supplied by Burson-Marsteller’s Advocacy Communications Team allowed this ‘grassroots’ alliance to use full-page advertisements, direct telemarketing and other high-tech campaign techniques to build its membership to a claimed three million by 1995, and to disseminate its prosmoking message. The Alliance’s president is the Vice-President of Burson-Marsteller, and other Burson-Marsteller executives are actively involved in the Alliance.38 Burson-Marsteller is heavily involved in similar activities on behalf of clients who have been threatened by the rise of environmentalism.

pages: 242 words: 245

The New Ruthless Economy: Work & Power in the Digital Age by Simon Head

Asian financial crisis, business cycle, business process, call centre, conceptual framework, deskilling, Erik Brynjolfsson, Ford paid five dollars a day, Frederick Winslow Taylor, informal economy, information retrieval, medical malpractice, new economy, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, shareholder value, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, single-payer health, supply-chain management, telemarketer, Thomas Davenport, Toyota Production System, union organizing

But the operative word here is "can," because most of the software companies represented in the pages of CCS have created an elaborate superstructure of technology designed to "manage" these sales encounters from beginning to end, with the "verbal interaction" between agent and client playing out according to prearranged formulas. The agent loses the power to manage the call and has instead to defer to instructions provided by CRM software, which embodies the detailed preferences of management. A primitive version of this managed call will be familiar to anyone who has been disturbed by the intrusions of a telemarketer trying to sell real estate or Caribbean vacations. But the software systems on offer in the pages of CCS vastly strengthen the managed call as a weapon of knowledge management and control. From now on, we will, wherever possible, let the software executives, engineers, and consultants speak for themselves. Perhaps the best place to begin an analysis of the sales and marketing process is with the stock of information that a company has about a customer, and that can be brought to bear once a customer contacts the company, or vice versa.

This was puzzling since call center employees never come into physical contact with their customers and the dress habits of the Southwest are notably relaxed. But by drawing up and enforcing strict dress codes, call center managers could open up a whole new field of employee activity that they could bring under their control, thus adding to an already draconian regime of regulation and surveillance. Managers at one leading telemarketing company, Teletech, were notable sticklers for sartorial ON THE DIGITAL ASSEMBLY LINE conformity. Carolyn Grogg, a Tucson resident who worked for Teletech for a year, failed to comply with the company's footwear regulations. Suffering from a swollen toe, Grogg came to work with a closed-toe shoe on her healthy foot, and a matching sock and sandal on her injured foot. Sandals, however, were against regulations, and Teletech's managers were going to send her home, an "occurrence" or demerit that would have been entered onto her employment record.

See Management role 222 INDEX Supply chain management (SCM) and ERP implementation, 162-64 Survey Research on employee insecurity, 14 Turnover of employees at call centers, 108-09, 112-13,116 Unfair labor practices, 175 Unions: and automobile industry, 33, 47, 58,172,173; and call Tac (time allowed for completion centers, 100,102-03,105-06; of job), 42,46,48,49,101, right to unionize, 102-03, 173 174-75; important role of, Taft-HartleyAct, 174 176-77; See also specific union Taylor, Frederick Winslow, 6, 7-8, United Auto Workers (UAW), 33, 20, 23-28,43,45,46,170. See 47, 58,172,173,175 also Scientific management United Parcel Service (UPS), 105 Teams: cross-functional teams, 69; in University of California at Irvine's medical reengineering, 133 Medical Center, 127 Techno-economic regime's effect, University of Iowa College of 13-15 Medicine, 128 Teixeira, Ruy, 179-80,181-82,183 Telemarketing. See Call centers Vance, Dina, 108 Teletech (Tucson, Arizona), 104-05 Vinkhuyzen, Erik, 89-92,109, 111, Teloquent Communications, 95 114,115 Teufel, Thomas, 156,158 The Visible Hand (Chandler), 18 Textbook of Office Management Volpe, Lou, 85-86 (Leffingwell), 60 Thurow, Lester, 183-84 Wages and salaries, stagnation of, Tilney, Cornelia, 130 2-3,13,179,188 Time-and-motion studies, 7-8; Wagner, Edward, 131 metal-working industries, 32, Wall Street Journal, 78 41,48; service industries, Whalen, Jack, 89-92,109, 111, 62-63, 66, 67 114,115 Time To Heal (Ludmerer), 127, 149 White-collar industrialization, 6, 8, Town, Nigel, 160 9,13, 17, 66.

pages: 306 words: 78,893

After the New Economy: The Binge . . . And the Hangover That Won't Go Away by Doug Henwood

"Robert Solow", accounting loophole / creative accounting, affirmative action, Asian financial crisis, barriers to entry, borderless world, Branko Milanovic, Bretton Woods, business cycle, capital controls, corporate governance, corporate raider, correlation coefficient, credit crunch, deindustrialization, dematerialisation, deskilling, ending welfare as we know it, feminist movement, full employment, gender pay gap, George Gilder, glass ceiling, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, half of the world's population has never made a phone call, income inequality, indoor plumbing, intangible asset, Internet Archive, job satisfaction, joint-stock company, Kevin Kelly, labor-force participation, liquidationism / Banker’s doctrine / the Treasury view, manufacturing employment, means of production, minimum wage unemployment, Naomi Klein, new economy, occupational segregation,, post-work, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, statistical model, structural adjustment programs, Telecommunications Act of 1996, telemarketer, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, total factor productivity, union organizing, War on Poverty, women in the workforce, working poor, zero-sum game

Computers have made some of our jobs more interesting; I couldn't have produced this book, from concept to camera-ready copy, as completely or as quickly twenty years ago, nor could I have pubHshed a credible looking newsletter w^ith up-to-date economic stats w^ithout a staff 68 After the New Economy of editors, number-crunchers, and artists. But for lots of people—like the U.S.'s 5 million telemarketers—the computer means sitting in a cubicle and having your output monitored by the boss. Computers have allowed financiers to develop complex new financial instruments and trade them at Ughtning speed—which is good news for the principals, but is it good for most of society? The net has allowed people around the world to make contact with each other in completely unprecedented ways—but computers have also allowed governments to spy on us and marketers to profile us in unprecedented ways.

A standard definition of IT jobs includes the categories that the BLS calls electrical and electronics engineers, computer speciaHsts, and operations research analysts. These accounted for 2% of employment in 2000, and will account for 3% in 2010. Since they are slated to increase their share, they're also responsible for a lager share of total growth—10%. A selection of more mundane old economy jobs—retail salespersons, cashiers, telemarketers, truck drivers, and office clerks, who on balance earn a third of what IT workers do—accounts for the same share of growth, and will make up 10% of the workforce in 2010. So the American economy hasn't been producing only burger-flipper jobs. It produces a fair number of high-end jobs, a lot of low-end jobs, but not much in the middle. And what do people Hke Reich mean by "skills" anyway? If the ruHng class were seriously worried about illiteracy, they'd spend more money on education.

Clothaire, 146 Reagan, Ronald, 8 recessions, political purpose, 182 regionahzation, 159 Reich, Robert, 71,74 retail trade, 64-66 Riflcin, Jeremy, 68 Robinson, Joan, 235 Robinson, William, 175-176 Rockefeller, David, 232 Rubin, Robert, 218 ruling class, global, 174—178 Russell, Marta, 100 sad militants, 185 Sakakibara, Eisuke, 228 Index Sale, Kirkpatrick, 168 Salomon Smith Barney, 197 scale, economic, 167-168 Scandinavia, very wired, 6 Schama, Simon, 23 Schrager, Ian, 233 Schwab, Klaus, 175-178 Seattle, anti-WTO protests, 32,160 sex, Gilder on, 11—13 sexual preference and pay, 100 sex discrimination, 94—101 international comparisons, 101—102 Shakespeare, 188 shareholder activism, 214 Shiller, Robert, 6-8,25-27,194 Shiva, Vandana, 162,168-169 Shorrock.Tim, 171 Sichel, Daniel, 57 Silicon Valley, income distribution, 105 Silicon Valley Toxics CoaUtion, 232 Sinai, Allen, 4 Singhne, Peter, 18 Skilhng, Jeffirey, 33 skills, job, 73-77 returns to, 86—87 skin shade and pay, 99 Smith, Adam, 109-110, 163,173 Smith, Patti, 183 Smith, Paul, 6 social democracy, 139-143,182 social movements, new, 179 Social Security, 227 Solow, Robert, 3 sovereignty, 170 space, shrinkage of, 146 speedup, 215, 229 Spencer, Herbert, 37 state, retreat of, 150-152 Stigbtz, Joseph, 193 Stiroh,Kevin,51,57 stock market 1990s bubble, history, 188-189 analysts' role, 194—200 anomalies, 194 book value, defined, 233 brokers' fees and salaries, 201-202 and corporate profitability, 203—204 and corporate restructuring, 214-215 economics of, 187-188,192-195 and evolution of the corporation, 212-217 excess volatiHty, 194 happiness of investors, 212 and managers' pay, 216—217 and pop culture, 187 psychology of, 25—26 trading frequency and returns, 190—191, 234,239 wisdom of, 35 see also finance stock options, 216—217 and wealth distribution, 126—127 stock ownership, distribution of, 24, 122-124 stress, management by, 25 stylish shoes, 165 Summers, Lawrence, 5,231 surveillance, 68,77—78 Survey of Consumer Finances, 118—119 Survey of Income and Program Participation, 118 symbolic analysts, 71,72 synergy vs. conflict, 197-200 Taylorism, 78 technology not evil, 2 and social movements, 179 telecommunications industry, 196—198 telegraph, 7 telemarketers, 68, 189 269, 31 dme, acceleration of, 146 Tocqueville, Alexis de, 82,139 Tompkins, Doug, 161-162 total factor productivity. See Productivity transnational capitalist class, 175—176 transnational corporations. See multinational corporations transparency, 223 Triplett, Jack, 51,55 tulip-bulb mania, 23 unemployment, political uses of, 206—207 U.S. Agency for International Development, 163 U.S.

pages: 323 words: 111,561

Digging Up Mother: A Love Story by Doug Stanhope

call centre, index card, pre–internet, rent control, rolodex, Saturday Night Live, telemarketer

Lee Remick said hi to me at the craft service table. I couldn’t wait to call Mother to tell her about my first brush with fame. (If I hadn’t been so slipshod in deleting Mother’s hoard postmortem, I’ll bet there was a VHS or three of Tough Love in there, queued up to the second I walked by.) BACKSTAGE WEST WAS THE ACTORS’ RAG THAT WOULD LIST AUDITIONS and casting information and it was always littered with ads for telemarketing positions promising boatloads of money. So one day I put on the only suit I’d brought and went down to for an interview. The place was a gutted apartment on the second floor over the shops on La Cienega Blvd. across from a car wash. Everyone was bedraggled, sitting at highway salvage desks, yelling into phones. I noticed the manager had a water-bong on his desk. I guess I didn’t really need to wear the suit.

Wait for the waitress to come into sight, drop a nickel in, and spin the wheel while you order your beer. Drop in another nickel when she came back with it. I’d loiter in front of the motel office and wait for someone to buy a newspaper out of the machine, then casually jam my hand in the door before it shut. Every coin could be the one that made you rich in Vegas, no point in wasting one on the paper looking for a job. Finding a job was a breeze. At that time, boiler-room telemarketing was the second largest industry in Nevada next to gaming, for what reason I do not know, most likely due to lax regulation. The classifieds of the Las Vegas Review-Journal were loaded with ads for phone room work just like the ones in LA. I found one that was within walking distance and went down to apply, knowing this time I wouldn’t need a suit and tie. AMERICAN DISTRIBUTING WAS IN A U-SHAPED STRIP MALL ON Industrial Blvd.

Mother came that Christmas and it was one of the better ones I could remember. We had plenty of money and could buy real gifts and decorate. Mother came with Deputy Mike who was now her third husband. Aside from me and Mike, almost everyone smoked pot heavily and we were all entertained by getting to hand a joint to a cop to pass along to the next guy in the circle, inside the offices of a fraud telemarketing outfit. He took it all pretty well. “Hey, I don’t give a shit. I’m off the clock.” Mother would make Mike come into the office and watch me pitch people. They’d pull up chairs in front of my desk like Mother was seeing me in a school play. I tried to make it a show. I drew up a bullshit checklist—a legal pad with the word “bullshit” written on each line that I’d check off every time I lied.

pages: 206 words: 51,534

Wrap It In A Bit Of Cheese Like You're Tricking The Dog: The fifth collection of essays and emails by New York Times Best Selling author David Thorne by David Thorne

Minecraft, pink-collar, telemarketer

From: David Thorne Date: Thursday 19 May 2016 5.24pm To: Steven Semmens Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Plagiarism *You’re the twat. ................................................................................................ From: Steven Semmens Date: Thursday 19 May 2016 5.29pm To: David Thorne Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Plagiarism Real original. Robert the Telemarketing Raccoon Something had been in the wheelie bins. They were tipped over and torn bags were strewn across the yard. A garbage bag was all the way at the end of our driveway, the contents spilled onto the road for all the neighbours to see. It was lucky we hadn’t thrown out a huge dildo or something, as our neighbours are huge gossips. I bought a new leaf blower recently and a few days later, the lady at the post office asked me what Mph it was rated at.

“Fine, name him then.” “Okay, I’ll call him Robert.” “Really?” “What’s wrong with the name Robert?” “Nothing if you’re a mattress salesman. It’s an odd name for a raccoon though.” “I know a Robert and he’s not a mattress salesman. He’s a sales rep for the local radio station.” “How is that any better?” “Fine, you name him then.” “No, you’ve already named him. We’re stuck with Robert now. Robert the telemarketing raccoon. He’ll take twenty-percent off if you book ten radio spots and throw in a pillow-top mattress.” On the fourth night, after giving Robert his cauliflower crepes with sautéed asparugus and grilled cheese topping, I accidentally left the back door slightly ajar when I headed back to the kitchen to get his crème brûlée. I’d put it in the refrigerator a half hour earlier to cool down and when I collected it and closed the refrigerator door, I saw Robert five or six feet from me, inside the house, waiting expectantly.

pages: 299 words: 83,854

Shortchanged: Life and Debt in the Fringe Economy by Howard Karger

big-box store, blue-collar work, corporate social responsibility, credit crunch, delayed gratification, financial deregulation, fixed income, illegal immigration, labor-force participation, late fees, London Interbank Offered Rate, low skilled workers, microcredit, mortgage debt, negative equity, New Journalism, New Urbanism, offshore financial centre, payday loans, predatory finance, race to the bottom, Silicon Valley, Telecommunications Act of 1996, telemarketer, underbanked, working poor

For example, leaner businesses meant less face-to-face contact with clients and less personalized budgeting advice. Agencies began to focus exclusively on revenue-generating DMPs rather than on non-revenue-generating financial services. Through aggressive marketing, newer CCAs occasionally crossed the line into deceptive practices, such as falsely claiming that involuntary fees were voluntary; providing customer bonuses for referrals; and paying for incentive-based telemarketing and spam e-mail. The newer agencies also charged high fees—typically a full month’s DMP payment—to set up an account. In contrast, traditional NFCC member agencies may offer one-on-one budget counseling for $13 a session, and charge a $15-per-month DMP fee plus $25 for setting up a new account.6176 Because many newer CCAs deal solely with CCIs that pay a Fair Share reimbursement, they place only a portion of customers’ unsecured debt into a DMP, leaving them to manage other creditors on their own.

Meanwhile, most state and federal regulators appear to be asleep at the switch.”48 Abuses by unethical consumer credit counseling agencies are in many ways the most reprehensible in the fringe economy. Drawn to the nonprofit status of CCAs, financially desperate consumers are led to believe they will find a safe harbor and an advocate who is sympathetic to their plight. Instead, they often encounter “credit counselors”—many of which are simply telemarketers who read from a prepared script—hungry for a commission and ready to sign them up for a DMP.49 Cynically, the “credit counselor” knows full well that most consumers will not be able to handle the high monthly DMP payments. For consumers with few resources and limited incomes, paying 9% instead of 17% on a $15,000 credit card debt will not make much difference. They simply can’t afford to repay the debt, regardless of the interest rate.

Since many of these clients are desperate to get their lives back on track, they are willing to undertake a sizeable DMP obligation, even though they’re unsure how they will meet their other expenses. This explains why so many “non-profits” grab the money at the front end by requiring a “voluntary contribution” equal to a one-month DMP payment.191 Credit counseling is a national rather than statewide industry, since CCAs routinely use telemarketing and the Internet to reach millions of consumers across the United States. Although some states license CCAs, it’s essentially a futile task to regulate the thousand or more agencies that operate nationally. In many ways, the Internet has created a national economy for CCAs that supersedes state regulations. Creditor funding through Fair Share reimbursements effectively makes CCAs “soft” debt collectors rather than charities.

pages: 186 words: 49,251

The Automatic Customer: Creating a Subscription Business in Any Industry by John Warrillow

Airbnb, airport security, Amazon Web Services, asset allocation, barriers to entry, call centre, cloud computing, commoditize, David Heinemeier Hansson, discounted cash flows, high net worth, Jeff Bezos, Network effects, passive income, rolodex, sharing economy, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, software as a service, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, subscription business, telemarketer, time value of money, zero-sum game, Zipcar

It was at MarketingSherpa that she learned the power of getting customers to buy something small as a precursor to selling them something large. MarketingSherpa used to offer its case studies for $7 each. “Everyone assumed we made tons of money from selling $7 articles,” Holland told me, “but the reality is, the one-shot article business was a small part of our company.” MarketingSherpa’s real moneymaker was the conferences. Holland employed a full-time telemarketer who called people who had ordered a $7 case study. First, the telemarketer would ensure that the customer had received the case study and then would follow up with an invitation to a live event on the same topic. “We ended up selling 900 tickets to a $1,500 conference just because we called someone who bought a $7 article.” Holland has even done testing to isolate the ideal time to upgrade a customer who has recently become a subscriber.

pages: 1,199 words: 332,563

Golden Holocaust: Origins of the Cigarette Catastrophe and the Case for Abolition by Robert N. Proctor

bioinformatics, carbon footprint, clean water, corporate social responsibility, Deng Xiaoping, desegregation, facts on the ground, friendly fire, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, index card, Indoor air pollution, information retrieval, invention of gunpowder, John Snow's cholera map, language of flowers, life extension, New Journalism, optical character recognition, pink-collar, Ponzi scheme, Potemkin village, publication bias, Ralph Nader, Ronald Reagan, selection bias, speech recognition, stem cell, telemarketer, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, Upton Sinclair, Yogi Berra

An even bigger response followed the company’s 1993–94 Marlboro Adventure Team promotion, during which smokers were invited to call 1–800 MARLBORO to obtain free brand-linked merchandise after accumulating “Marlboro Miles” (for smoking that brand). The response was one of the largest in the history of telemarketing, generating 900,000 calls in the first forty-five minutes and 2.5 million during the first four hours. Nearly 10 million smokers participated in the frenzy, which Philip Morris marketers characterized as “the largest promotion in consumer products history.” Some 4 million orders were placed and 11 million items shipped.76 Telemarketing on such a scale requires complex and coordinated management. In 1993, for example, just to receive calls and process orders for its Marlboro Adventure Team promotion, Philip Morris established a new 450,000-square-foot “fulfillment facility” in Lafayette, Indiana, staffed by 350 employees, and a new Customer Service Telemarketing Facility in Kankakee, Illinois, with a staff of 25 to handle phone orders.

The companies sometimes kept logs of such calls, and these, too, reveal the persistence of ignorance even in the face of long-established medical wisdom. The background here is that like many other large corporations, tobacco manufacturers often receive thousands of calls per day from consumers. In 1997, for example, R. J. Reynolds received 260,000 calls to its consumer relations department, plus an additional 400,000 calls via its outside telemarketing contractors.74 Philip Morris fields an even larger volume, which can increase dramatically during periods of special promotions. At the turn of the millennium the company was receiving three to four million consumer-initiated calls per year, most of which were responses to promotions.75 Calls are handled in a number of different ways, according to what the company hopes to gain from such communications.

YAC responded to over 400,000 phone calls to the company that year, handling also certain aspects of computer security. YAC was the largest fulfillment vendor in the country at the time, with 250 separate packaged goods accounts. Three of YAC’s facilities in 1997 had operators constantly standing by, with up to 350 staffers taking calls for the Camel maker. Brown & Williamson’s operations were on a smaller scale, but in the 1990s the company contracted with the Cognos Corporation to handle its telemarketing and data processing, including help with assembling logs of calls to the company. Though tobacco companies may receive millions of calls and emails in any given year, only a tiny fraction are recorded and preserved in the online archives. Phone logs are generally low on the industry’s priorities for retention, which is why they don’t usually survive for very long. Phone and mail logs are typically held for only a year prior to destruction,78 and those few that have survived are probably just the result of either bureaucratic accident or the chance timing of a subpoena.

pages: 323 words: 100,923

This Is Not Fame: A "From What I Re-Memoir" by Doug Stanhope

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, airport security, bitcoin, Donald Trump, obamacare, pre–internet, Saturday Night Live, Stephen Hawking, telemarketer, traveling salesman

I became stalkery but in inventive and entertaining ways. She had a day job as a secretary for some classified ad circular. I got a job there telemarketing for a day, just to see the look on her face when I punched in for work. I put on a big fawning display of bullshit in the interview and the boss couldn’t have been more impressed. Krystal hadn’t seen me come in but was at her desk when I walked out with her boss—perfectly timed—telling me: “Well, we look forward to seeing you first thing Monday morning.” I put on an over-the-top, cheese-dick smile, looked right at her and said, “Oh, believe me, I’m looking forward to working here, too!” She tilted her head back, rocked it sideways and yawn-laughed in defeat. It was funny until I had to do telemarketing for a few hours that Monday. As soon as Krystal went to lunch and the joke had run its course, I went permanently AWOL.

It was the only time in my life that I’d occasionally play around with meth, which back then was called crystal and you only snorted it. Or that’s all I knew to do with it. My neighbors were a couple and were hardcore tweekers, staying awake for five and six days in a row on that poison and telling me about their shared hallucinations. They would see the same elves on fence posts. They were also where I scored meth. Right next door. On an afternoon after work—I was still a telemarketer back then—I had plans to drive to Pahrump, Nevada, to visit my first-ever legal brothel. I was very excited and told my neighbors about it over some bumps of crystal. You’d think I was talking about going to see my favorite band, I was so anxious. They asked what it was gonna cost and I told them I figured I could get outta there for under a hundred and fifty bucks. He looked at her for a beat or two and said, “Well, shit.

pages: 401 words: 108,855

Cultureshock Paris by Cultureshock Staff

Anton Chekhov, clean water, haute couture, haute cuisine, Honoré de Balzac, indoor plumbing, Louis Pasteur, money market fund, QWERTY keyboard, Skype, telemarketer, urban renewal, young professional

They are closed on Sundays. 7 e: La Grande Épicerie de Paris; 38 rue de Sèvres; tel: 9e: Galeries Lafayette Gourmet; 40 boulevard Haussmann; tel: Ordering Groceries Online You can order groceries online for home delivery from supermarkets, as well as from Picard, the frozen food specialist described on page 216, and Telemarket, a longestablished grocery ordering service. See also the section on ‘Eating Out at Home’ below. Auchan; website: Carrefour; website: Picard; website: Telemarket; website: Monoprix; website: Groceries for Homesick Anglophones Don’t Americans need an Oreo once in a while and don’t the English pine for Hobnobs? The shops below specialise in items from Anglophone countries. Make sure the products have not expired, although packaged goods can last longer than the date indicated.

pages: 187 words: 62,861

The Penguin and the Leviathan: How Cooperation Triumphs Over Self-Interest by Yochai Benkler

business process, California gold rush, citizen journalism, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, East Village, Everything should be made as simple as possible, experimental economics, experimental subject, framing effect, informal economy, invisible hand, jimmy wales, job satisfaction, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, knowledge economy, laissez-faire capitalism, loss aversion, Murray Gell-Mann, Nicholas Carr, peer-to-peer, prediction markets, Richard Stallman, Scientific racism, Silicon Valley, Steven Pinker, telemarketer, Toyota Production System, twin studies, ultimatum game, Washington Consensus, zero-sum game, Zipcar

When I list these levers here, I don’t mean to imply that they are equally appropriate or even available for all activities, for all types of cooperative systems. Different activities or different populations are better served by different combinations of these levers. A campaign to get people to donate funds for disaster relief, for example, is better off appealing to a shared set of moral commitments and sheer human empathy than is a telemarketing sales department trying to get its employees to deliver better service. But even the telemarketing department that understands the importance of fair wages and employee autonomy will do better than one that uses technology to strictly monitor the work environment, or one that implements a reward system based exclusively on material incentives. So, with that caveat in mind, what follow are the levers I believe, based on the evidence I’ve cited throughout this book, to be ingredients of successful, practical, cooperative systems.

The Ethical Algorithm: The Science of Socially Aware Algorithm Design by Michael Kearns, Aaron Roth

23andMe, affirmative action, algorithmic trading, Alvin Roth, Bayesian statistics, bitcoin, cloud computing, computer vision, crowdsourcing, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Filter Bubble, general-purpose programming language, Google Chrome, ImageNet competition, Lyft, medical residency, Nash equilibrium, Netflix Prize, p-value, Pareto efficiency, performance metric, personalized medicine, pre–internet, profit motive, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, RAND corporation, recommendation engine, replication crisis, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Bork, Ronald Coase, self-driving car, short selling, sorting algorithm, speech recognition, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, superintelligent machines, telemarketer, Turing machine, two-sided market, Vilfredo Pareto

Most basically, differential privacy promises safety against arbitrary harms. It guarantees that no matter what your data is, and no matter what thing you are concerned about occurring because of the use of your data, that thing becomes (almost) no more likely if you allow your data to be included in the study, compared to if you do not. It literally promises this about anything you can think of. It promises that the probability that you get annoying telemarketing calls during dinner does not increase by very much if you allow your data to be included in a study. It promises that the probability that your health insurance rates go up does not increase by very much if you allow your data to be included in a study. And it certainly promises that the probability that your data record is reidentified (as in the Massachusetts hospital record and Netflix Prize examples) does not increase by very much.

See also gender data and bias sexual orientation data, 25–26, 51–52, 86–89 Shapley, Lloyd, 129–30 The Shining (King), 118, 120 Shmatikov, Vitaly, 25 Simmons, Joe, 157–58 simple algorithms, 174 simulated game play, 134–35 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), 30–31 singularity, 180 Smith, Adam, 36 smoking, 27–28, 34–36, 39, 51–54 Snowden, Edward, 47–48 social awareness, 16–17, 131 social welfare, 97, 113, 115 societal norms and values, 12, 15–18, 20–21, 86, 134, 169–70 socioeconomic groups, 57 software engineers, 48–49 sorting algorithms, 4–5 spurious correlations, 150, 159 stable equilibriums, 99–100, 128 stable matchings, 128–30 standoffs, 98 statistics and adaptive data analysis, 159 and aggregate data, 22–23, 30–31 and algorithmic violations of fairness and privacy, 96 Bayesian, 38–39, 173 and the Bonferroni correction, 149 criminal sentencing, 14–15 and differential privacy, 40, 44–45, 47–52, 167 and fairness issues, 193–94 flawed statistical reasoning, 140–41 and interpretability of model outputs, 171–72 and investing scams, 138–41 and medical research, 34 and online shopping algorithms, 117 and p-hacking, 144–45, 153–55, 157–59, 161, 164, 169–70 statistical modeling, 90 statistical parity, 69–74, 84 and US Census data, 195 and “word embedding” models, 57–58, 63–64 stock investing, 81, 137–41 strategy, 97–102 Strava, 50–51 subgroup protections, 88–89 subjectivity, 86, 172 subpoenas, 41, 45–46, 48 “superfood” research, 143–44 superintelligent AI, 179–81, 185, 187 supervised machine learning, 63–64, 69–70, 183 supply and demand, 94–97 Supreme Court nomination hearings, 24 survey responses, 40–45 Sweeney, Latanya, 23 synthetic images, 132–35 target populations, 172–73 TD-Gammon program, 132 technological advances, 100–101, 103 TED Talks, 141–42 telemarketing calls, 38 temporal difference, 132 Tesauro, Gerry, 132 test preparation courses, 74–75 theoretical computer science, 11–13, 36 threshold rule, 75 Title VII, 15 tobacco research, 34–36 torturing data, 156–59 traffic and navigation problems, 19–20, 101–11, 113–15, 179 training data, 61–62 transparency, 125–26, 170–71 trust, 45–47, 170–71, 194–95 “truthfulness” in game theory, 114 “tunable” parameters, 37–39, 125–26, 171 Turing, Alan, 11–12, 180 Turing Award, 133 Turing machine, 11 23andMe, 54–55 2020 Census, 49, 195 Twitter Predictor Game, 52–53 two-route navigation problem, 107 two-sided markets, 127 2001: A Space Odyssey (film), 184 typing, 118 underspecified problems, 183 unintended consequences, 6–8, 16–17, 184–85, 188 unique data points, 26–27 unsupervised learning, 63–64 upstream effects, 194 US Census Bureau, 49 US Constitution, 49 US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 86–87 user identifiers, 24 user modeling, 121 user ratings, 118–21 US military deployments, 50–51 US State Department, 15 validation sets, 162–63 value alignment problems, 184 values.

pages: 200 words: 72,182

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America by Barbara Ehrenreich

business process, full employment, housing crisis, income inequality, McMansion, place-making, post-work, sexual politics, telemarketer, union organizing, wage slave, women in the workforce, working poor, zero day

I rule out various occupations for one reason or another: hotel front-desk clerk, for example, which to my surprise is regarded as unskilled and pays only $6 or $7 an hour, gets eliminated because it involves standing in one spot for eight hours a day. Waitressing is also something I'd like to avoid, because I remember it leaving me bone-tired when I was eighteen, and I'm decades of varicosities and back pain beyond that now. Telemarketing, one of the first refuges of the suddenly indigent, can be dismissed on grounds of personality. This leaves certain supermarket jobs, such as deli clerk, or housekeeping in the hotels and guest houses, which pays about $7 and, I imagine, is not too different from what I've been doing part-time, in my own home, all my life. So I put on what I take to be a respectable-looking outfit of ironed Bermuda shorts and scooped-neck T-shirt and set out for a tour of the local hotels and supermarkets.

This might not make Maine an ideal setting in which to hunker down for the long haul, but it made it the perfect place for a blue-eyed, English-speaking Caucasian to infiltrate the low-wage workforce, no questions asked. As an additional attraction, I noted on my spring visit that the Portland-area business community was begging piteously for fresh employable bodies. Local TV news encouraged viewers to try out for a telemarketing firm offering a special “mothers' shift”; the classic rock station was promoting “job fairs” where you could stroll among the employers' tables, like a shopper at the mall, playing hard to get. Before deciding to return to Maine as an entry-level worker, I downloaded the help-wanted ads from the Portland Press Herald's Web site, and my desktop wheezed from the strain. At least three of the thousand or so ads I scanned promised “fun, casual” workplace environments, and I pictured flannel-shirted teams bantering on their afternoon cider-and-doughnut breaks.

pages: 300 words: 76,638

The War on Normal People: The Truth About America's Disappearing Jobs and Why Universal Basic Income Is Our Future by Andrew Yang

3D printing, Airbnb, assortative mating, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Ben Horowitz, Bernie Sanders, call centre, corporate governance, cryptocurrency, David Brooks, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, falling living standards, financial deregulation, full employment, future of work, global reserve currency, income inequality, Internet of things, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, Khan Academy, labor-force participation, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, Lyft, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, megacity, Narrative Science, new economy, passive income, performance metric, post-work, quantitative easing, reserve currency, Richard Florida, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, Sam Altman, self-driving car, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, single-payer health, Stephen Hawking, Steve Ballmer, supercomputer in your pocket, technoutopianism, telemarketer, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, unemployed young men, universal basic income, urban renewal, white flight, winner-take-all economy, Y Combinator

On average, sellers’ income from Etsy contributes only 13 percent to their household income and is intended as a supplement to traditional work. Forty-one percent of Etsy sellers who focus on their business full-time get their health care through a spouse or partner, and 39 percent are on Medicare or Medicaid or another state-sponsored program. It’s possible that some workers in towns with dying retail stores could find menial jobs on their computers as telemarketers, phone sex operators, English tutors to Chinese kids, or image classifiers to help train AI. That’s not exactly an appealing future though—and long-distance low-skilled jobs are the ones most subject to automation and a race to the lowest-cost provider. Most retail workers at least had the gratification of leaving home, conversation with colleagues and customers, getting a store discount, and generally being a member of society.

Depression, child and spousal abuse, drug and alcohol abuse, divorces, and suicide all became much more prevalent; the caseload of the area’s mental health center tripled within a decade. During the 1990s, Youngstown’s murder rate was eight times the national average, six times higher than New York’s, four and a half times that of Los Angeles, and twice as high as Chicago’s. Through the 1990s, local political and business leaders kept seeking new opportunities for economic development. First it was warehouses. Then telemarketing. Then minor league sports. Then prisons—four were built in the region, which added 1,600 jobs but brought other issues. Many residents were concerned about the perception of Youngstown as a “penal colony.” One prison run by a private corporation was so lax that six prisoners, including five convicted murderers, escaped at midday in July 1998 and the officials didn’t notice until notified by other inmates.

pages: 252 words: 73,131

The Inner Lives of Markets: How People Shape Them—And They Shape Us by Tim Sullivan

"Robert Solow", Airbnb, airport security, Al Roth, Alvin Roth, Andrei Shleifer, attribution theory, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, Brownian motion, business cycle, buy and hold, centralized clearinghouse, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable:, clean water, conceptual framework, constrained optimization, continuous double auction, creative destruction, deferred acceptance, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, experimental subject, first-price auction, framing effect, frictionless, fundamental attribution error, George Akerlof, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, Gunnar Myrdal, helicopter parent, information asymmetry, Internet of things, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, iterative process, Jean Tirole, Jeff Bezos, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, John Nash: game theory, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, late fees, linear programming, Lyft, market clearing, market design, market friction, medical residency, multi-sided market, mutually assured destruction, Nash equilibrium, Occupy movement, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, Peter Thiel,, pez dispenser, pre–internet, price mechanism, price stability, prisoner's dilemma, profit motive, proxy bid, RAND corporation, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, school choice, school vouchers, sealed-bid auction, second-price auction, second-price sealed-bid, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, spectrum auction, Steve Jobs, Tacoma Narrows Bridge, technoutopianism, telemarketer, The Market for Lemons, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, transaction costs, two-sided market, uber lyft, uranium enrichment, Vickrey auction, Vilfredo Pareto, winner-take-all economy

The unemployed stay unemployed as much by choice as necessity, turning down job offers as they patiently scout out more promising opportunities: maybe something with a shorter commute, higher pay, or greater prospects for career advancement. In Akerlof’s view, this was hard to reconcile with extended stretches that many Americans spend without a job, despite a willingness to do just about anything for pay.7 Lots of people do scan the want ads looking for something better than the burger-flipping or telemarketing opportunities that immediately present themselves. But this view of unemployment ignored many of the brutal job market realities experienced by the long-term unemployed that he felt a model should be able to explain. That’s what led him back to the market for lemons, which was a more satisfying framework for understanding why the labor market doesn’t work for so many people. (It wasn’t Akerlof’s last word on why the labor market falls so far short of the Arrow-Debreu ideal, but it was at least a model that he found to be a lot more satisfying than anything that preceded it.).

As the scientific management pioneer Frederick Taylor once put it: “Hardly a competent workman can be found who does not devote a considerable amount of time to studying just how slowly he can work and still convince his employer that he is going at a good pace.” 5. Eli Berman, “Sect, Subsidy, and Sacrifice: An Economist’s View of Ultra-Orthodox Jews,” Quarterly Journal of Economics 115, no. 3 (2000). 6. Diego Gambetta, Codes of the Underworld: How Criminals Communicate (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2009). 7. “Maine Attorney General Stops Telemarketing of Dubious Baldness, Psoriasis, and Weight-Loss Products,” Quackwatch, November 2003, 8. “Return to Spender,”, last updated April 25, 2011, 9. Paul Milgrom and John Roberts, “Price and Advertising Signals Product Quality,” Journal of Political Economy 94, no. 4 (1986): 796–821. 10.

pages: 532 words: 139,706

Googled: The End of the World as We Know It by Ken Auletta

23andMe, AltaVista, Anne Wojcicki, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, Ben Horowitz, bioinformatics, Burning Man, carbon footprint, citizen journalism, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, Colonization of Mars, commoditize, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, death of newspapers, disintermediation, don't be evil, facts on the ground, Firefox, Frank Gehry, Google Earth, hypertext link, Innovator's Dilemma, Internet Archive, invention of the telephone, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, knowledge worker, Long Term Capital Management, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, PageRank, Paul Buchheit, Peter Thiel, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Richard Feynman, Sand Hill Road, Saturday Night Live, semantic web, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, slashdot, social graph, spectrum auction, stealth mode startup, Stephen Hawking, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, strikebreaker, telemarketer, the scientific method, The Wisdom of Crowds, Upton Sinclair, X Prize, yield management, zero-sum game

What would happen if advertisers expected measured results from the $3 million spent for each thirty-second ad for NBC’s 2009 Super Bowl, or for the approximately $60 billion spent on television advertising in the United States each year? Or the estimated $172 billion spent in the United States on advertising, and the additional $227 billion spent on marketing, including public relations, direct mail, telemarketing, and sales promotions? “That’s the worst kind of business model in the world,” he said—the worst, that is, if you’re an old-school ad man. “You don’t want to have people know what works. When you know what works or not, you tend to charge less money than when you have this aura and you’re selling this mystique.” For sixty years, network television sold much of its advertising in an “up-front” each spring and summer after the new fall shows were announced.

This was about 36 percent of the estimated $445 billion spent globally on advertising. Yet ad spending was less than half of what was spent on what is euphemistically now called “marketing.” A media campaign no longer consisted of buying ads on the three networks and a few other places; now a campaign might combine ads on TV and in magazines, a viral effort online, search ads, in-store sales promotions, telemarketing, polling, public relations—all of which was more expensive. The increased expense, and spending, spurred media buying agencies to merge into su peragencies, such as Irwin Gotlieb’s Group M. These media buyers now had enormous clout, which they exercised over traditional media companies that relied on advertising. While advertising in most traditional media was declining or growing incrementally, online advertising was soaring.

If we use the Internet for phone calls, they wondered, why can’t all telephones have a single number? Why do we need multiple answering machines? Why do we need to switch phone numbers when we move? Why do we need to wait to listen to phone messages? Why can’t we convert them to text messages instead? Why can’t we record phone conversations if the other party consents? Why can’t our phones block telemarketing calls or make sure certain people are screened out? Because it’s over the Internet, why can’t most calls be free? For its beta test, in 2007, Google introduced for a relatively small group a service that would work as Google Voice does. It was called GrandCentral, the name of a start-up Google acquired a few years earlier. With their regular phones, in the initial GrandCentral pilot project, users called into a voice mail service, then pushed a button to get a dial tone.

Miss Wyoming by Douglas Coupland

air freight, Live Aid, plutocrats, Plutocrats, RAND corporation, telemarketer

In December, when Susanhad realized she was pregnant, Eugene forbid her to go near themicrowave oven or to drink alcohol. Spring and summer came and went. She liked her job. She opened the daily mail, which Eugene picked up at a post-officeboxa few streets over. Inside the envelopes came crumpledmoney, sent in by superstitious radio enthusiasts whose namesEugene purchased from an old college pal who'd become a tele-marketing whiz—suckers! Most often it consisted of two twentiesand a ten, but sometimes Susan collected wads of ones and fivesin dirty little clumps, likely scrounged from under the front seat of a teenager's car. What did these people want? What kind ofcosmic roulette wheel did they hope to spin by responding toEugene's fraudulent thrusts? Susan's stomach felt as if it contained a great big ski bootthat rolled around inside her.

It was all in twenties and looked sleazy sit- ting in a heap the way it did. He dialed Jerr-Bear, and against the odds, Jerr-Bear answered. "Jerr-Bear, it's John Johnson." "The happy wanderer!" "Yeah, that's me." John heard chewing sounds. "Are you atdinner now? Do you want me to call back?" The thought ofJerr-Bear at a nonrestaurant dinner table seemed almost impos-sible for John to visualize. "Yeah, it's dinner, but big deal. What are you, a telemarketer?How can I help you, John?" "Call me back." "Right." Jerr-Bear maintained a complex system of cloned cell phonesso as to avoid tapping by authorities. A minute later John's linerang. Even then, the two spoke in veils. "Jerr, what do you give someone who's in a lot of pain?" "Pain's a biggie, John. Life hurts. Specifically—?" "Back pain." "Ooh—most people need heavy artillery for that one.

pages: 92 words: 23,741

Lessons From Private Equity Any Company Can Use by Orit Gadiesh, Hugh MacArthur

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, call centre, corporate governance, inventory management, job-hopping, performance metric, shareholder value, telemarketer

The simplification resulted in $50 million of bottom-line improvements within a year. For the second initiative, the new owners assigned a high-level executive team—supported by outside technical experts—to spearhead a change management program to consolidate loan processing, credit collection, and trade finance into two new customer service centers. This initiative included a parallel step that dedicated project teams to upgrade Korea First’s IT organization, adding telemarketing and customer call-center capacities. By choreographing these steps in parallel, Newbridge was able to make Korea First’s new facilities operational within five months. Finally, the blueprint took into account the need to build the right organization with the right salespeople to support the full-potential plan. As in many Asian business cultures, Korea’s labor and management have a loyalty compact supported by strong employment laws.

pages: 534 words: 15,752

The Sushi Economy: Globalization and the Making of a Modern Delicacy by Sasha Issenberg

air freight, Akira Okazaki, anti-communist, barriers to entry, Bretton Woods, call centre, creative destruction, Deng Xiaoping, global supply chain, haute cuisine, means of production, Nixon shock, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, special economic zone, standardized shipping container, telemarketer, trade route, urban renewal

“It was nowhere near enough,” says Puglisi. “You’re used to catching 400 tonnes, and when the allocation comes and it’s 150 tonnes, well, you couldn’t survive.” The quota holders were quickly forced to decide whether they wanted to stay in the tuna business; those who saw a future looked to expand their share. Puglisi sat down with the government’s published list of quota holders and started, with a telemarketer’s diligence, calling up boat owners and asking them if they were interested in selling. In small amounts, sometimes as little as five tonnes at a time, he accumulated 1,200 tonnes over several months for a total of $1.7 million. Prices started at under $700 per tonne. The quota, however, offered only the right to catch fish, not a guarantee of finding them, and in the years after the quota system was implemented, catches fell precipitously.

pages: 303 words: 93,545

I'm a stranger here myself: notes on returning to America after twenty years away by Bill Bryson

illegal immigration, millennium bug, Ronald Reagan, Simon Kuznets, telemarketer

Of course, shopping has been the national sport in America for decades, but three significant retailing developments have emerged in recent years to elevate the shopping experience to a higher, giddier plane. They are: •Telemarketing. This is an all-new business in which platoons of salespeople phone up complete strangers, more or less at random, generally at suppertime, and doggedly read to them a prepared script promising a free set of steak knives or AM-FM radio if they buy a certain product or service. These people have become positively relentless. The possibility that I would buy a time-share in Florida over the telephone from a stranger is about as likely as the possibility that I would change religious affiliation on the basis of a doorstep visit from a brace of Mormons, but evidently this feeling is not universal. According to the New York Times, tele-marketing in America is now worth $35 billion a year. That figure is so amazing that I cannot think about it without getting a headache, so let us move on to retail development number two.

pages: 313 words: 94,490

Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die by Chip Heath, Dan Heath

affirmative action, availability heuristic, Barry Marshall: ulcers, correlation does not imply causation, desegregation, low cost airline, Menlo Park, Pepto Bismol, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Stephen Hawking, telemarketer

I just don’t like organized religion.” The profile goes into much greater depth: Sam and Samantha’s tastes in pop culture, their preferences about social events, and so on. What does “Saddleback Sam” accomplish for church leaders? Sam forces them to view their decisions through a different lens. Say someone proposes a telemarketing campaign to local community members. It sounds as if it has great potential to reach new people. But the leaders know from their research that Sam hates telemarketers, so the idea is scratched. And thinking about Saddleback Sam and Samantha isn’t limited to church leaders. There are hundreds of small ministries at the Saddleback Church: grade school classes, Mother’s Day Out programs, a men’s basketball league. All are led by volunteer members who don’t receive day-to-day direction from paid church staff.

pages: 340 words: 91,745

Duped: Double Lives, False Identities, and the Con Man I Almost Married by Abby Ellin

Bernie Madoff, bitcoin, Burning Man, business intelligence, Charles Lindbergh, cognitive dissonance, Donald Trump, double helix, dumpster diving, East Village, feminist movement, forensic accounting, fudge factor, hiring and firing, Internet Archive, longitudinal study, Lyft, mandatory minimum, meta analysis, meta-analysis, pink-collar, Ponzi scheme, Robert Hanssen: Double agent, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, telemarketer, theory of mind, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions

It was very inspiring—until speculation arose that as much as 6 percent of her language was lifted from Michelle Obama’s speech at the Democratic National Convention eight years earlier.16 Oops. Society starts sending us these conflicting messages when we’re children, and parents fully participate. Though they say that honesty is the trait they most want in their children, parents are ten times more likely to rebuke a child for snitching than for lying.17 They lull kids to sleep with parables of George Washington and chopped cherry trees, all the while lying to telemarketers or salespeople or friends. (Don’t even get me started on Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy.) This continues into adulthood. After leaving the White House in 2017, former Trump press secretary Sean Spicer went on to teach a class at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. A few months later, he made a surprise appearance at the Emmy Awards, making light of the flagrant falsehoods he’d told while working for the president.

I think it goes back to the historical role we allow men to play, like Leave It to Beaver. We still have this idea that the man goes to work and earns the money and the woman stays home. Because of the pressure and stress of their job, we excuse the men’s problems. We’re conditioned to do that.”36 Besides society, who else can we blame for this? Parents. In a February 2016 study, researchers found that parents usually lie less when kids are around (the dreaded telemarketer aside). But check this out: they act more dishonestly around their sons than their daughters.37 “It’s possible that parents lie less in front of girls because they don’t want to teach the girls that lying is okay, but they don’t feel so bad teaching boys that lying is okay,” said Anya Samek, an associate professor of economics at the University of Southern California.38 Why would that be? Maybe it’s because lying is considered unbecoming and unfeminine.

pages: 289 words: 99,936

Digital Dead End: Fighting for Social Justice in the Information Age by Virginia Eubanks

affirmative action, Berlin Wall, call centre, cognitive dissonance, creative destruction, desegregation, Fall of the Berlin Wall, future of work, game design, global village, index card, informal economy, invisible hand, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, labor-force participation, low-wage service sector, microcredit, new economy, post-industrial society, race to the bottom, rent control, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, South of Market, San Francisco, telemarketer, Thomas L Friedman, trickle-down economics, union organizing, urban planning, web application, white flight, women in the workforce, working poor

All held advanced degrees, and one was a COBOL programmer who had excelled in computer science in the age of punch cards. In addition, one member of WYMSM was a systems administrator. If we relax the definition of IT-based work enough to correct for its innate class and gender bias by including data entry, insurance claims and processing, and telemarketing, more than a dozen more YWCA residents were engaged in high-tech labor. More than half of the residents I interviewed held jobs in data entry, call center customer service, telemarketing, telephone operating, and claims processing, and many of them had held several of these jobs over the years. Others identified significant computer and technological skills that were required for their work in the social service, secondary education, administrative, consumer service, and health care occupations.

pages: 362 words: 99,063

The Education of Millionaires: It's Not What You Think and It's Not Too Late by Michael Ellsberg

affirmative action, Black Swan, Burning Man, corporate governance, creative destruction, financial independence, follow your passion, future of work, hiring and firing, job automation, knowledge worker, lateral thinking, Lean Startup, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, mega-rich, meta analysis, meta-analysis, new economy, Norman Mailer, Peter Thiel, profit motive, race to the bottom, Sand Hill Road, shareholder value, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, social intelligence, Steve Ballmer, survivorship bias, telemarketer, Tony Hsieh

As a result of getting into real estate, Eben discovered something that would later prove to be central to his life: he learned how to educate himself in sales and marketing. He got started when he attended a workshop by a real estate sales and marketing trainer named Joe Stumpf, in Eugene, Oregon. “I immediately recognized I had to somehow work for this guy and soak up his knowledge. But I didn’t know how I was going to do that—here he was, leading big group workshops all over the country, and I was barely scraping by. “So I started calling up his outbound telemarketers. These guys are trying to sell you on something, so they’ll talk to anyone! I told them about my experience at the workshop and became friendly with them. Once, I found this set of Tony Robbins tapes at Goodwill for ten bucks, and I knew one of the guys I was talking to there would like it, so I packed the tapes up and sent them to him. Things like that. “One day, they sent me some audiotapes of Joe.

Rather, such jobs provided valuable exposure to the values of work and industry, opportunities for meeting mentors and others who could advance their career prospects, and a stream of income and savings that helped them live independently, which often became initial capital for ventures that eventually made them affluent. Nearly every person I feature in this book started out their working lives in low-status “dead-end” jobs, from fast food to waiting tables to door-to-door sales and telemarketing to manual labor. But they sure didn’t stay there. Why not? In a wonderful book called 50 Rules Kids Won’t Learn in School: Real-World Antidotes to Feel-Good Education by Charles Sykes, Rule 15 is: “Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had a different word for burger flipping. They called it opportunity.” Sykes writes: “You live in a country with extraordinary opportunity and income mobility: if you start at the bottom, that doesn’t mean you will stay there.

Ultimate Sales Machine by Chet Holmes

commoditize, Donald Trump, index card, Indoor air pollution, Maui Hawaii, telemarketer

o Exercise Figure out what the impact areas are in your business. Typically if you are running a department, your department is the impact area. But if you're a CEO or general manager of a medium or large company. you may have many impact areas. To make identifying them easier, here is a list of 15 impact areas from another CEO I worked with: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. Outside sales Inside telemarketing team Marketing activities Customer service CRM (customer relationship management) Purchasing and suppliers Shipping and receiving Inventory control Accounts receivable Personnel Technology Partner relations/vendors Partner relations/ affiliates Export sales California initiative This last initiative was to attack a new market. What initiatives do you or should you have? Now list your areas of impact.

I'm with XYZ Gazette and we'd love to come and talk to you about your advertising." If the prospect was not "buying now," this was a very short conversation: "No thanks. I'm not interested." It's the same in the circulation department of every newspaper in America: they are all tactical. "Hi. I'm with the City Chronicle. We have a special right now for subscribers." If you're not someone who reads newspapers, you're hanging up on these poor tactical telemarketers. A strategist might devise an approach that would make you want to read a newspaper. But that's another project, so let's stick with the ad sales example for a moment. Becoming a Brilliant strategist 67 Picture yourself as the owner of a small-town ad agency, a body shop, a haircutting salon, or a restaurant-all mainstay advertisers every community newspaper should have. With my program the call from the sales rep now went something like this: Hi.

pages: 97 words: 31,550

Money: Vintage Minis by Yuval Noah Harari

23andMe, agricultural Revolution, algorithmic trading, Anne Wojcicki, autonomous vehicles, British Empire, call centre, credit crunch, European colonialism, Flash crash, greed is good, job automation, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, lifelogging, pattern recognition, Ponzi scheme, self-driving car, telemarketer, The Future of Employment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, zero-sum game

In September 2013 two Oxford researchers, Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael A. Osborne, published ‘The Future of Employment’, in which they surveyed the likelihood of different professions being taken over by computer algorithms within the next twenty years. The algorithm developed by Frey and Osborne to do the calculations estimated that 47 per cent of US jobs are at high risk. For example, there is a 99 per cent probability that by 2033 human telemarketers and insurance underwriters will lose their jobs to algorithms. There is a 98 per cent probability that the same will happen to sports referees, 97 per cent that it will happen to cashiers and 96 per cent to chefs. Waiters – 94 per cent. Paralegal assistants – 94 per cent. Tour guides – 91 per cent. Bakers – 89 per cent. Bus drivers – 89 per cent. Construction labourers – 88 per cent. Veterinary assistants – 86 per cent.

Sh*t My Dad Says by Justin Halpern

Rubik’s Cube, telemarketer

What I’m trying to say is that what makes you up, it’s always been around, and it always will be around. So really the only thing you should worry about is the part you’re at right now. Where you got a body and a head and all that bullshit. Just worry about living, dying is the easy part.” Then he put down his spoon, looked at me, and stood up. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to do one of the best things about being alive: take a shit.” On Telemarketer Phone Calls “Hello?…Fuck you.” On My Interest in Smoking Cigars “You’re not a cigar guy…. Well, the first reason that jumps out at me is that you hold it like you’re jerking off a mouse.” On Entertaining the Notion of Getting a Tattoo “You can do what you want. But I can also do what I want. And what I’ll be doing is telling everyone how fucking stupid your tattoo is.”

pages: 268 words: 112,708

Culture works: the political economy of culture by Richard Maxwell

1960s counterculture, American ideology, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, big-box store, business process, commoditize, corporate governance, cuban missile crisis, deindustrialization, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, global village, Howard Rheingold, income inequality, informal economy, intermodal, late capitalism, Marshall McLuhan, medical malpractice, Network effects, profit maximization, Ralph Nader, refrigerator car, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, structural adjustment programs, talking drums, telemarketer, the built environment, Thorstein Veblen, Unsafe at Any Speed, urban renewal, Victor Gruen, Whole Earth Catalog, women in the workforce

Advertisers get more fine-grained information about how users respond to ads on the Web as well, including click-through rates to the advertisers’ site by keyword purchased from a search engine, domain type, time, region, and so on. The abundance of infor216 The Web mation generated by the clickstream means that companies can generate leads and target repeated appeals (in ads or E-mails) more cheaply and effectively than through direct mail or telemarketing.52 But wait, as the late-night TV commercials tell us, there’s more. The Web lends itself to other forms of market research as well. Polls, surveys, and online forums devoted to particular products offer free focus groups, where entertainment companies figure out which soap-opera characters and potential plot lines appeal most to audiences, or software firms learn how consumers react to their latest release.53 Products and ads are constantly being tested.

Once a client invests in a campaign, software can evaluate the performance of banner ads in real time, allowing advertisers to redesign campaigns on the fly, or redeploy ads to pages that deliver the highest response rates. Programs also assess editorial content on pages in real time, permitting advertisers to match their ads with “complimentary and appropriate editorial.”55 This flexibility is available far more cheaply and quickly than in broadcasting or even direct mail and telemarketing.56 All of this underscores how commercial forces can take advantage of the Web’s interactivity to turn users’ pursuit of knowledge, community, and play to economically productive ends. How should we understand the nature of users’ contribution to value creation? This question raises one of the foundational debates in the political economy of communication, which can only be sketched out briefly here.

pages: 370 words: 107,983

Rage Inside the Machine: The Prejudice of Algorithms, and How to Stop the Internet Making Bigots of Us All by Robert Elliott Smith

Ada Lovelace, affirmative action, AI winter, Alfred Russel Wallace, Amazon Mechanical Turk, animal electricity, autonomous vehicles, Black Swan, British Empire, cellular automata, citizen journalism, Claude Shannon: information theory, combinatorial explosion, corporate personhood, correlation coefficient, crowdsourcing, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, desegregation, discovery of DNA, Douglas Hofstadter, Elon Musk, Fellow of the Royal Society, feminist movement, Filter Bubble, Flash crash, Gerolamo Cardano, gig economy, Gödel, Escher, Bach, invention of the wheel, invisible hand, Jacquard loom, Jacques de Vaucanson, John Harrison: Longitude, John von Neumann, Kenneth Arrow, low skilled workers, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, meta analysis, meta-analysis, mutually assured destruction, natural language processing, new economy, On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures, p-value, pattern recognition, Paul Samuelson, performance metric, Pierre-Simon Laplace, precariat, profit maximization, profit motive, Silicon Valley, social intelligence, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, stochastic process, telemarketer, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Future of Employment, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, theory of mind, Thomas Bayes, Thomas Malthus, traveling salesman, Turing machine, Turing test, twin studies, Vilfredo Pareto, Von Neumann architecture, women in the workforce

Despite the realities behind these algorithmic ratings, there have been many quantitative conclusions drawn from the ‘probabilities’, job categories and employment statistics represented in this graph, and people seldom look beyond the resulting infographics to the specific conclusions for specific jobs. However, those results are provided in the study, in an appendix table where the jobs are ranked from 0 to 702, with the highest number being the most computerizable category of job. That job is Telemarketer, with a near certain probability of computerizability of over 0.99. Right behind Telemarketers, with the same probability to two decimal places, are Hand Sewers. One would assume that given that their jobs were largely eliminated by Lee’s and Jacquard’s weaving frames in the 17th and 18th century, Hand Sewers occupy some tiny fraction on the far right of the layer labelled in the legend as “Production.” Behind Hand Sewers, again with the same probability, are Mathematical Technicians, reminding us how Babbage’s Engine design was expected to eliminate most of the human computers in de Prony’s factories.

pages: 889 words: 433,897

The Best of 2600: A Hacker Odyssey by Emmanuel Goldstein

affirmative action, Apple II, call centre, don't be evil, Firefox, game design, Hacker Ethic, hiring and firing, information retrieval, John Markoff, late fees, license plate recognition, Mitch Kapor, MITM: man-in-the-middle, optical character recognition, packet switching, pirate software, place-making, profit motive, QWERTY keyboard, RFID, Robert Hanssen: Double agent, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, spectrum auction, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Telecommunications Act of 1996, telemarketer, undersea cable, Y2K

You will then hear the caller’s name as they have recorded it and you will have the options of accepting the call, denying the call, playing a “sales call refusal” to the caller, or sending the call to your Home Voice Mail, if you subscribe to 669 94192c16.qxd 6/3/08 3:35 PM Page 670 670 Chapter 16 it. The “sales call refusal” is pretty useful. If the caller is stupid enough to identify that they are a telemarketer, you can have this announcement played to them. It will inform the caller that you do not accept telephone solicitations and wish to be placed on their Do Not Call list. I have never had a telemarketer attempt to ring my line through Call Intercept, although with the new National Do Not Call List, some of these phone solicitors may become desperate. I should note that Call Intercept may not interact well with certain Verizon services as well as some types of phone calls. You cannot have Anonymous Call Rejection active on your line with Call Intercept.

The guy greeting me outside my dorm room happened to be the area manager of security for the local telephone company. “Are you Brent?” he queried. “Yesss,” I said. The phone cop turned around to face the door. He knocked two or three times. Immediately the door flew open and the barrels of small hand guns were pointed at me, wielded by men dressed in what you might call “land warrior nerd” attire. They were wearing telemarketer headsets and I heard the cracking of walkie-talkies. I don’t remember the specifics. All I know is that I was facing the other way, my hands against the wall up above my head. “What is this?” I asked. They frisked me and my friend. “Do you have any weapons? Any knives? Guns?” “No,” I said, flabbergasted. On cue, an agent flashed his ID. It wasn’t the FBI after all. It was the Secret Service.

Yeah, I started selling junk from the last year’s shows too. Helped finance my life. Doom, Doom II, Quake, and Heretic were all played on a 386 with no sound card. And beat. I either got lucky a lot, saved a lot, or used the cheat codes a lot. Regardless, I won. Then came phone phreaking. I never really took part, but I played enough to build my own advanced Rock Box without the aid of others. Loved to blast the random telemarketer who called. Seems they call much more now. I remember that 1-800-4249096 and 9098 were the White House Press Line and the Department of Defense hotline. One still works. You play to figure out which. I memorized the touch tones so that I could tell you what number or numbers you dialed. That always seemed to freak people out. I’m drifting from the real purpose of this article. Let me jump back to the present time.

Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life by Steve Martin

Golden Gate Park, Haight Ashbury, haute couture, Saturday Night Live, telemarketer

My father enjoyed dealing with fan-mail requests and used his real estate expertise to help manage my vacation home. In the 1990s, my father’s attitude toward me began to soften. I had written Picasso at the Lapin Agile, a play set in 1905 about a hypothetical meeting between Picasso and Einstein. My father flipped over it, bragging to his friends and telling me I should win a Pulitzer Prize. He was laughing more, too, enjoying pranks on telemarketers and mail solicitors, and he exhibited his charitable streak by delivering Meals on Wheels, a service that provides food to the elderly. I began to appreciate him more as his humor started to shine through. Though he was experiencing disturbing health issues, he took my twenty-five-year-old nephew, Rusty, to a car dealer to help him negotiate a price. After a few offers and counteroffers, the dealer looked at the purchase order and said, “I don’t know, I’m not really comfortable with this.”

pages: 288 words: 16,556

Finance and the Good Society by Robert J. Shiller

Alvin Roth, bank run, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Bernie Madoff, buy and hold, capital asset pricing model, capital controls, Carmen Reinhart, Cass Sunstein, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, computer age, corporate governance, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Deng Xiaoping, diversification, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, eurozone crisis, experimental economics, financial innovation, financial thriller, fixed income, full employment, fundamental attribution error, George Akerlof, income inequality, information asymmetry, invisible hand, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, Kenneth Rogoff, land reform, loss aversion, Louis Bachelier, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, market design, means of production, microcredit, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Myron Scholes, Nelson Mandela, Occupy movement, passive investing, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, profit maximization, quantitative easing, random walk, regulatory arbitrage, Richard Thaler, Right to Buy, road to serfdom, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, selection bias, self-driving car, shareholder value, Sharpe ratio, short selling, Simon Kuznets, Skype, Steven Pinker, telemarketer, Thales and the olive presses, Thales of Miletus, The Market for Lemons, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, Vanguard fund, young professional, zero-sum game, Zipcar

One is repeatedly reminded of the stark reality that all those millions of other people in one’s country do not know or care about you. Philanthropy in today’s world is made doubly unrewarding by the typical giving process. A paid caller for some philanthropic organization telephones at dinner time, beginning to read from a script that has been carefully worded by professional marketers. The paid consultants who write these scripts have years of experience with telemarketing. The scripts are such a powerful force that local governments in the United States require that charities register their scripts with the attorney general or the charitable trust division. The script is designed to elicit a cash contribution, by one tactic or another. Readers are likely very familiar with the typical response when one hesitates to promise a particular dollar amount: “I need to enter a minimum amount that you are prepared to give,” perhaps with the additional explanation that the organization needs to set its budget.

See also stock markets Nietzsche, Friedrich, 221, 236 Noelle, D. C., 59 nonconsequentialist reasoning, 181 nonprofit organizations: asset accumulation (trapped capital), 122–23, 205; boards, 120; child sponsorship, 200; donor recognition, 234; executive compensation, 121, 122; future of, 123; in housing market, 52; number of, 122; participation, 205–6; purposes, 122, 203; roles, 119, 120–21, 123; telemarketing, 198. See also philanthropy North Korea, 190 Novemsky, Nathan, 161 Nunn, Sam, 192 NYSE. See New York Stock Exchange O’Brien, John, 56 Occupy Wall Street, xiv, xv, 92, 187 O’Donnell, Lawrence, Jr., 91 olive oil options and futures, 76–77, 79, 246n6 (Chapter 9) Oneal, John, 228–29 Open Yale online courses, xiii, 241n1 (preface) options: demand for, 78–80; in everyday life, 76; future of, 80; history, 76–77, 79; markets, 75, 77–79; prices, 78–79; regulation of, 80; use of, 35.

Multicultural Cities: Toronto, New York, and Los Angeles by Mohammed Abdul Qadeer

affirmative action, business cycle, call centre, David Brooks, deindustrialization, desegregation, edge city,, Frank Gehry, game design, ghettoisation, global village, immigration reform, industrial cluster, Jane Jacobs, knowledge economy, market bubble, McMansion, new economy, New Urbanism, place-making, Richard Florida, risk tolerance, Silicon Valley, Skype, telemarketer, the built environment, The Chicago School, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the scientific method, urban planning, urban renewal, working-age population, young professional

Given the demographic reality of an increasing ethnic population and relative shrinking of the number of Anglo-European consumers, many mainstream supermarkets and stores are stocking ethnic goods. There are Halal meat shelves, racks of spices, and frozen foods of different nationalities in the supermarket chains of the three cities. Ethnic products are being integrated into mainstream commerce. Recently, corporate telemarketers have started using ethnic languages and salutations to target ethnic consumers. For example, telephone and Internet service providers in Toronto use ethnic speakers to promote their offerings. The same is true in New York and Los Angeles. All in all, consumer markets of the three cities are segmented along ethnic lines to some extent, though open to outside influences. There is some indication that ethnic consumers show a preference for ethnic stores and service suppliers if those are readily accessible and competitive in price.

., 172, 289n9 Switzerland, 78–9 symbolic interactionalism, 150 synagogues, 59, 78 Syrians, 93–4 Taiwanese: and Chinese economies, 118, 119, 258; in Chinese enclaves, 62, 70, 116; economic niches, 122; immigration, 113; media, 159; Index 353 political representation, 180; selfemployment rates, 102, 105, 111; transnational economies, 93, 116, 189 Tajbakhsh, K., 274 Tamils, 46, 259 Tammany Hall, 176 Target stores, 162 Taric mosque (Toronto), 79 taxi services, 74, 91, 94, 97, 103, 106, 122, 145, 249 Taylor, C., 24, 209, 237 technology industries, 89, 97, 98 telemarketing, 110 Temecula City (California), 225 temporary workers, 42, 54 terrorism, 20, 52, 78–9, 97, 265 Thompson, R., 114 Thrift, N., 29 Tim Hortons, 162 tokenism, 185 tolerance, 28, 52, 151, 154, 169, 293n23 Toronto: about, 9, 62–3, 87, 97, 98t, 143, 252; Chinese economies, 113–15, 117, 118–19, 287n54; consumer markets, 110; and diversity, 81, 191; earnings by ethnicity, 108; ethnic economic niches, 91, 97, 101–2, 105–6, 123; ethnic economies, 74; ethnic enclaves, 60–1, 62–7, 65, 72, 115, 132, 134, 142; ethnic groups, 10, 44, 45t, 46, 63; ethnic malls, 75; governance structure, 182, 183; housing, 66; iconic symbols, 260–1; immigrant demographics, 10, 44–6, 45t; integrated neighbourhoods, 73, 139, 140; as majority-minority city, 44–6, 45t, 113; as multicultural city, 5, 11, 252–4; opportunity structures, 97, 98t, 99, 100, 115, 118–19; places of worship, 79; polarization in, 106; political representation in, 181–5, 192, 193, 206, 296n22, 296nn24–5, 296–7n29; social organization, 129, 147, 148–9; and social sustainability, 86; statistics, 9, 10, 44, 45t, 46, 97, 98t, 183–4, 200; and transnationalism, 93.

pages: 199 words: 43,653

Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products by Nir Eyal

Airbnb, AltaVista, Cass Sunstein, choice architecture, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance,, framing effect, game design, Google Glasses, IKEA effect, Inbox Zero, invention of the telephone, iterative process, Jeff Bezos, Lean Startup, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Oculus Rift, Paul Buchheit, Paul Graham, Peter Thiel, QWERTY keyboard, Richard Thaler, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Snapchat, TaskRabbit, telemarketer, the new new thing, Toyota Production System, Y Combinator

The Fogg Behavior Model is represented in the formula B = MAT, which represents that a given behavior will occur when motivation, ability, and a trigger are present at the same time and in sufficient degrees.1 If any component of this formula is missing or inadequate, the user will not cross the “Action Line” and the behavior will not occur. Let’s walk through an example Fogg uses to explain his model. Imagine a time when your mobile phone rang but you didn’t answer it. Why not? Perhaps the phone was buried in a bag and therefore difficult to reach. In this case your inability to easily answer the call inhibited the action. Your ability was limited. Maybe you thought the caller was a telemarketer or someone else you did not want to speak to. Your lack of motivation influenced you to ignore the call. It is possible that the call was important and within arm’s reach, but the ringer on your phone was silenced. Despite having both a strong motivation and easy access to answer the call, it was completely missed because you never heard it ring—in other words, no trigger was present. In the previous chapter we covered triggers.

pages: 172 words: 46,104

Television Is the New Television: The Unexpected Triumph of Old Media in the Digital Age by Michael Wolff

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, barriers to entry, commoditize, creative destruction, disintermediation, hiring and firing, Joseph Schumpeter, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, the medium is the message, zero-sum game

On the one hand, there is the influential, the prestigious, the culturally significant, a business and medium of value, need, originality, and exclusivity. On the other hand, there’s the cheap, crass, and low, a constant and immediate arbitrage between what you spend to create the medium against the short-term sales it produces. One side of the business produces content meant to stand on its own (the content is the asset), another side makes the circulars, direct mail, advertorial, freestanding inserts (the junk in Sunday papers), telemarketing calls, crap magazines, and cable ads that in the end only justify the creation of the ad rather than any independent-value content. It’s all media, but with fundamentally different models and to a different effect. Facebook’s value as a technology company may seem high, but its actual value comes from the enormity of its meaningless, undifferentiated traffic. It has no other product it can sell than some ads next to complaints about neighbors’ dogs, party pics, and humblebrags.

pages: 422 words: 131,666

Life Inc.: How the World Became a Corporation and How to Take It Back by Douglas Rushkoff

addicted to oil, affirmative action, Amazon Mechanical Turk, anti-globalists, banks create money, big-box store, Bretton Woods, car-free, Charles Lindbergh, colonial exploitation, Community Supported Agriculture, complexity theory, computer age, corporate governance, credit crunch, currency manipulation / currency intervention, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, death of newspapers, don't be evil, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, easy for humans, difficult for computers, financial innovation, Firefox, full employment, global village, Google Earth, greed is good, Howard Rheingold, income per capita, invention of the printing press, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, John Nash: game theory, joint-stock company, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, laissez-faire capitalism, loss aversion, market bubble, market design, Marshall McLuhan, Milgram experiment, moral hazard, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, negative equity, new economy, New Urbanism, Norbert Wiener, peak oil, peer-to-peer, place-making, placebo effect, Ponzi scheme, price mechanism, price stability, principal–agent problem, private military company, profit maximization, profit motive, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, rent-seeking, RFID, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, short selling, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, social software, Steve Jobs, Telecommunications Act of 1996, telemarketer, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, too big to fail, trade route, trickle-down economics, union organizing, urban decay, urban planning, urban renewal, Vannevar Bush, Victor Gruen, white flight, working poor, Works Progress Administration, Y2K, young professional, zero-sum game

According to Acxiom, I’m probably a shooting star: “thirty-six to forty-five, married, wakes up early and goes for runs, watches Seinfeld reruns, travels abroad, no kids yet, but undergoing fertility treatments.” The specificity of detail is scary, as is the ability of the corporation’s computer program to reduce human activity and aspiration to predetermined, quantifiable measurements. The data from companies like Acxiom are responsible for the offers that arrive in our mailboxes, as well as the language that’s used in them. This is the data a telemarketer’s computer uses to direct him to which of a hundred different possible scripts to use when speaking to each of us. The company doesn’t really know anything about any one of us in particular. They don’t really care to know. All they need to do is look at our behaviors and then compare them with everyone else’s. If they determine that people who travel between six and eight miles to work in the morning will be more likely to vote Republican if their cars have two doors, and Democratic if they have four, then this is all that matters.

Virtual Competition by Ariel Ezrachi, Maurice E. Stucke

Airbnb, Albert Einstein, algorithmic trading, barriers to entry, cloud computing, collaborative economy, commoditize, corporate governance, crony capitalism, crowdsourcing, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Graeber, demand response, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, double helix, Downton Abbey, Erik Brynjolfsson, experimental economics, Firefox, framing effect, Google Chrome, index arbitrage, information asymmetry, interest rate derivative, Internet of things, invisible hand, Jean Tirole, John Markoff, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, light touch regulation, linked data, loss aversion, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, market clearing, market friction, Milgram experiment, multi-sided market, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, offshore financial centre, pattern recognition, prediction markets, price discrimination, price stability, profit maximization, profit motive, race to the bottom, rent-seeking, Richard Thaler, ride hailing / ride sharing, road to serfdom, Robert Bork, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, smart meter, Snapchat, social graph, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, telemarketer, The Chicago School, The Myth of the Rational Market, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, transaction costs, Travis Kalanick, turn-by-turn navigation, two-sided market, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, women in the workforce, yield management

The study compared the percentages of women who appeared in Google searches for different occupations with U.S. statistics showing how many women actually worked in that field. Among the professions with significant gaps were CEOs (11 percent of the images in the Google image search result were women, compared with 27 percent of U.S. CEOs who are women), authors (25 percent of images for this search result were women, compared with 56 percent of U.S. authors who are women), and telemarketers (64 percent of the images were women compared with 50 percent in the workforce).43 Another study examined advertisements for the web page of a highprofile, historically black fraternity, Omega Psi Phi, which celebrated its Economic and Social Perspectives 127 one hundredth birthday. Among the algorithm-generated ads on the website were ads for low-quality, highly criticized credit cards and ads that suggest the audience member had an arrest record.44 What remains unclear is why a black fraternity website attracts ads about one’s criminal history, and why men get career coaching ads for boosting their salary, but not women.

If companies do not use shared IDs across the entire ecosystem, this could have a negative impact on our ability to find the same anonymous user across different web properties, and reduce the effectiveness of our solution.61 Thus, one concern is that Google and other dominant firms can track individuals across their sprawling super-platforms, but restrict sharing the customer information with others in the ecosystem. Allen Grunes, our colleague at the Data Competition Institute, explained this “capture” dynamic with respect to an industry-proposed do-not-track standard.62 The Federal Trade Commission asked industry participants to craft a new “Do Not Track” policy for online data, similar to the “Do Not Call” registry that helped reduce the nuisance of telemarketers telephoning our homes. “But what started as a group effort by technology companies and privacy experts to craft a new type of consumer protection has quietly changed,” Grunes said, “and today has morphed into a committee where a few of the most powerful Internet firms are deciding on the rules of the game.”63 The World-Wide-Web Consortium, under the influence of dominant players such as Google, Yahoo!

pages: 515 words: 143,055

The Attention Merchants: The Epic Scramble to Get Inside Our Heads by Tim Wu

1960s counterculture, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, AltaVista, Andrew Keen, anti-communist, Apple II, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, barriers to entry, Bob Geldof, borderless world, Brownian motion, Burning Man, Cass Sunstein, citizen journalism, colonial rule, East Village, future of journalism, George Gilder, Golden Gate Park, Googley, Gordon Gekko, housing crisis, informal economy, Internet Archive, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, Live Aid, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, McMansion, Nate Silver, Network effects, Nicholas Carr, placebo effect, post scarcity, race to the bottom, road to serfdom, Saturday Night Live, science of happiness, self-driving car, side project, Silicon Valley, slashdot, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, the built environment, The Chicago School, the scientific method, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere, Tim Cook: Apple, Torches of Freedom, Upton Sinclair, upwardly mobile, white flight, zero-sum game

The walled garden, by its nature, was already giving companies direct access to users and some of their information; now AOL also began allowing them, for instance, to insert ads into emails (making the service, in effect, a spammer of its own users). But there were more audacious plans still. AOL sold its users’ mailing addresses to direct mail companies. It was going to sell the phone numbers to telemarketers as well, shamelessly describing these maneuvers in its terms of service as a membership benefit. Alas, an inadvertent leak of the plan prompted a user revolt and the telemarketing part was abandoned. Finally, when these methods failed to produce enough revenue to meet the aggressive targets set by Pittman, the business group would resort to “special deals.” For example, money owed AOL for other reasons might somehow be accounted as “advertising revenue.” Sometimes, pre-booked advertising contracts were recorded twice, even though the revenues would have already been booked.

pages: 520 words: 134,627

Unacceptable: Privilege, Deceit & the Making of the College Admissions Scandal by Melissa Korn, Jennifer Levitz

"side hustle", affirmative action, barriers to entry, blockchain, call centre, Donald Trump, Gordon Gekko, helicopter parent, high net worth, Jeffrey Epstein, Maui Hawaii, medical residency, Menlo Park, performance metric, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, Saturday Night Live, side project, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, Thorstein Veblen, unpaid internship, upwardly mobile, yield management, young professional, zero-sum game

His dark hair cut short, Singer wore a crisp white shirt, tie, and bookish glasses. Headlined “Program to Outline ‘25 Steps to College,’” the article expanded into a preview of tips from Singer. One quote from him read, “Families and students need to understand that the college process is a game.” It had been a busy few years for Singer. After the Money Store folded in Sacramento, he continued on in the telemarketing industry, his initial success in the field landing him a job as an executive vice president at West Corporation, an Omaha-based company that then ran thirty-four call centers in North America. Singer was living in the Huntington Park neighborhood with Allison and their five-year-old son, Bradley, a little boy who, Singer liked to say, already had his sights set on Vanderbilt University. (He would end up at DePaul University.)

Singer wrote about how he’d whipped a high schooler named Brad into top form. In Singer’s telling, the teen had too many interests, from athletics to student government. He needed a personal brand. Singer said in the piece that he and Brad had settled on a “backpack business,” orchestrating an intricate plan to have backpacks with the school logo mass-produced by manufacturers in India—with the help of Singer’s old telemarketing coworker. A video advertisement for the Key, uploaded to YouTube in January 2012, strikes a tone somewhere between an after-school special and paid programming for a gadget you didn’t know you needed. There’s a worried mom in a kitchen extolling the virtues of the Key’s advisory services, saying that without the company, “My son would’ve missed his chance to go to USC.” Other scenes also reveal that Singer’s company was more than a solo operation.

pages: 135 words: 49,109

Hand to Mouth: Living in Bootstrap America by Linda Tirado

payday loans, plutocrats, Plutocrats, quantitative easing, telemarketer, unpaid internship

(To be fair to Wal*Mart, my friends weren’t actually let go because they wouldn’t wiggle enough. They can’t prove causation. It’s just that they didn’t start getting demerits until they stopped wiggling.) At work, I’m often told what words to say, and I will be written up if I deviate from the script or combine two steps to save time. In retail, we must acknowledge a customer who comes within a set radius of us with a certain tone and tenor in our voices. In telemarketing, our every word might be scripted. In fast food, we’re typically given three greetings to choose from. At one large fast-food chain (let’s call it LFC for short), the choices were these: 1) Welcome to LFC, how can I help you? 2) Welcome to LFC, would you like to try a delicious chicken meal today for only $4.99? 3) Welcome to LFC, what can we make fresh for you today? The company even sent in undercover customers to make sure we stayed on script.

pages: 168 words: 50,647

The End of Jobs: Money, Meaning and Freedom Without the 9-To-5 by Taylor Pearson

"side hustle", Airbnb, barriers to entry, Ben Horowitz, Black Swan, call centre, cloud computing, commoditize, creative destruction, David Heinemeier Hansson, Elon Musk,, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, Google Hangouts, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, loss aversion, low skilled workers, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, market fragmentation, means of production, Oculus Rift, passive income, passive investing, Peter Thiel, remote working, Ronald Reagan: Tear down this wall, sharing economy, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, software as a service, software is eating the world, Startup school, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, telemarketer, Thomas Malthus, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, unpaid internship, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, web application, Whole Earth Catalog

This acceleration, however, was different than the one that had come in the 1980s. Because of these improving global education standards and communication technologies, many of the jobs being outsourced were not blue-collar, manual labor jobs, but so-called white-collar jobs. They were jobs in information technology, such as computer systems analysts and software engineers, or were what could be called “IT-enabled” jobs (e.g. telemarketers and bookkeepers). Any job that could be done purely over the Internet, even ones that required advanced degrees, began moving overseas in 2001. Since then, the trend isn’t just continuing—it’s speeding up. Globalization vs. Innovation: Hyatt Hijacking Shan Zhai is a Chinese term used to describe the culture and practice of producing fake and imitation products, services, and brands. Michael Zakkour, an American living in China, relates his experience with Shan Zhai after he stayed at the “Hiyatt Hotel” on a trip to Dongguan, an industrial city in the Guangdong Province.

The Complete Android Guide: 3Ones by Kevin Purdy

car-free, card file, crowdsourcing, Firefox, Google Chrome, Google Earth, Googley, John Gruber, QR code, Skype, speech recognition, telemarketer, turn-by-turn navigation

You can even switch between phones on the fly, so you can change from the cellphone you had walking in the door to your more comfortable home phone when you're sitting down. Call screening for conversations you want to send straight to voicemail or avoid entirely. You can have Google Voice ring you and announce the caller's name for those you've never called before, and even listen in on the voicemail as it's being recorded. For the really annoying telemarketers, you can mark them as "spam," just like email, and they'll always get ignored. Call recording by simply pressing "4" during the call (on incoming calls only, for the time being). When you stop recording (press "4" again) or end the call, the recording shows up in your Voice inbox, just like a voicemail, with an easy option to download it as an MP3 file. There's a very notable announcement by Google to comply with call recording laws across all states.

pages: 162 words: 51,978

Sleepwalk With Me: And Other Painfully True Stories by Mike Birbiglia

index card, Ralph Nader, rolodex, Saturday Night Live, telemarketer, traveling salesman

In order to get club owners familiar with you, you were expected to provide a demo tape of your work. My sister Gina worked at HBO so all the dupes had HBO stickers on them. It was a bit misleading. “This Birbiglia guy has an HBO special? Wait a minute—this was shot on a hi-8 in the back of a comedy club next to a tray of clinking glasses! What the hell kind of HBO special is that?” Calling club bookers is kind of like telemarketing, except you never have to say, “Is your mom there?” But you follow similar principles. Never leave a message. Always try and get a live person on the phone, and try to keep the conversation going. “Oh, you don’t want to book me this week? Okay, how about next week? Oh, you don’t like me in general? Well, maybe I could interest you in some hair care products?” Only one club booker actually took my calls.

pages: 152 words: 53,304

I'm Just a Person by Tig Notaro

Saturday Night Live, telemarketer

The refrigerator was empty without her fruits and vegetables and bowls of grains she referred to as her “rabbit food.” The living room was silent in the early evening when she should have been making loud calls to our cousins the Raffertys, back in Mississippi. The water and food bowls in the yard were all dry. I wondered if her little squirrel, armadillo, and bird friends knew she was gone. Every time people called the house for her, mostly telemarketers and a few stragglers who didn’t know about her death, I had to tell someone else she was dead. Childhood friends came over to see me, and without my mother’s doting affections—“Oh, Sweetie, I love how you did your hair!”; “Oh, look at you . . . that shirt’s so cute!”—there was a palpable emptiness. The more expressive extension of myself was gone. I tried to tell myself in every possible way that my mother had died, hoping I could begin to get comfortable with the information.

pages: 519 words: 155,332

Tailspin: The People and Forces Behind America's Fifty-Year Fall--And Those Fighting to Reverse It by Steven Brill

2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, airport security, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, asset allocation, Bernie Madoff, Bernie Sanders, Blythe Masters, Bretton Woods, business process, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carried interest, clean water, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collective bargaining, computerized trading, corporate governance, corporate raider, corporate social responsibility, Credit Default Swap, currency manipulation / currency intervention, Donald Trump, ending welfare as we know it, failed state, financial deregulation, financial innovation, future of work, ghettoisation, Gordon Gekko, hiring and firing, Home mortgage interest deduction, immigration reform, income inequality, invention of radio, job automation, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, laissez-faire capitalism, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, mortgage tax deduction, new economy, obamacare, old-boy network, paper trading, performance metric, post-work, Potemkin village, Powell Memorandum, quantitative hedge fund, Ralph Nader, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Bork, Robert Gordon, Robert Mercer, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, telemarketer, too big to fail, trade liberalization, union organizing, Unsafe at Any Speed, War on Poverty, women in the workforce, working poor

The consequence…is that our communities will find themselves in an unenviable bind: They will have to either repeal the exemptions that allow for helpful signs on streets and sidewalks, or else lift their sign restrictions altogether and resign themselves to the resulting clutter. Lower courts have since relied on the Supreme Court’s decision in this case to overturn laws restricting panhandling and “robo” telemarketing calls. A broad cross section of lawyers believes it could put all kinds of other regulations—SEC laws governing what stockbrokers can say to clients, for example, or rules about how cigarettes can be advertised—in jeopardy, too. Martin Redish told me he regards decisions like the signage case, or challenges to tobacco advertising, as “breakthroughs for freedom and a blow against hypocrisy….If you don’t like cigarettes, ban them; don’t restrict what people can know about a legal product.”

FDA:​internet/​opinions.nsf/​4C0311C78EB11C5785257A64004EBFB5/​$file/​11-5332-1391191.pdf. country-of-origin information: American Meat Institute v. USDA,​internet/​opinions.nsf/​A064A3175BC6DEEE85257D24004FA93B/​$file/​13-5281-1504951.pdf. overturned a local ordinance: Reed et al. v. Town of Gilbert, Arizona et al., Oyez,​cases/​2014/​13-502. “robo” telemarketing calls: Adam Liptak, “Court’s Free-Speech Expansion Has Far-Reaching Consequences,” New York Times, August 17, 2015,​2015/​08/​18/​us/​politics/​courts-free-speech-expansion-has-far-reaching-consequences.html. “breakthroughs for freedom”: Interviews with Redish. the thirteenth most cited: This was determined using the database HeinOnline at

pages: 498 words: 145,708

Consumed: How Markets Corrupt Children, Infantilize Adults, and Swallow Citizens Whole by Benjamin R. Barber

addicted to oil, AltaVista, American ideology, Berlin Wall, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, business cycle, Celebration, Florida, collective bargaining, creative destruction, David Brooks, delayed gratification, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, G4S, game design, George Gilder, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, Hernando de Soto, illegal immigration, informal economy, invisible hand, Joseph Schumpeter, laissez-faire capitalism, late capitalism, liberal capitalism, Marc Andreessen, McJob, microcredit, Naomi Klein, new economy, New Journalism, Norbert Wiener, nuclear winter, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, pattern recognition, presumed consent, profit motive, race to the bottom, Ralph Nader, road to serfdom, Robert Bork, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, spice trade, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, the market place, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas L Friedman, Thorstein Veblen, trade route, X Prize

But even when we are under-whelmed, empirical studies show that “regardless of intelligence,” people “do not always choose well.”44 In a telling (and quite comical) California test, given the choice of three anonymous 401K portfolios among which, unbeknownst to the participants, the portfolio they actually owned was included, only one in five people chose their own portfolio as best for them.45 Similarly, experience demonstrates that whether an alternative is treated as opt in (you have to say expressly you want it for it to be selected) or opt out (you have to say expressly you do not want it for it to be excluded) can have a significant effect on decision making—which is why those pretending to enhance “choice” may actually influence a client to spurn a preferred alternative by offering it only as opt in, thereby favoring inertia. As many as three-quarters of Americans favor organ donation, but opt-in requirements mean that less than one-quarter actually exercise this preference in their wills.46 On the other hand, while most consumers dislike solicitation calls on their home phones, government opt-out requirements give telemarketing firms the edge. Consumers retain a formal “right” not to be called (by opting to put their names on no-call lists), but “choice” (no surprise!) favors the marketers, who have recently won the additional right to intrude on wireless cell-phone lines unless users opt out. Finally, it would seem that maximizing the number of choices we make in private and segmented domains that are not really crucial to human happiness while limiting the choices we are able to make in public domains that are significant allows a private market system dominated by consumption and the faux liberty it supposedly entails to distort and corrupt what we care about and how we live.

Lasn’s jammers agree with those Christian skeptics who deny that the conquest of cool can be the victory of rebellion over consumption since cool is merely the “opiate of our time,” whereas culture jamming demands a “movement versus The Corporate Cool Machine” that will “strike by unswooshing America™.”66 When Kalle Lasn first started writing about how to practice resistance, he exuded a certain naïveté, offering up Hollywood-style “I’m-not-gonna-take-it-anymore” tactics on the order of “The next time I’m caught standing in a long line at the bank, I’m going to shout cheerfully ‘Hey, how about opening another teller.’” Or “subvertising” corporations by getting those who patronize McDonald’s to feel “a little guilty, a little sick, a little stupid.”67 Other preferred strategies, as tame as they were cute, included sending spam mail faxers black pages that would use up the offending machines’ ink supplies and asking telemarketers for their home numbers to call them back later that evening. On paper, then, Lasn’s proposals hardly amount to resistance, let alone a ruthless critique of all that exists. Yet the jammers turn out to be exactly what Debord and his Situationists were not. In the case of the metaphysical Guy Debord, the theory was opaquely exquisite, but the practice altogether unsatisfactory. On the contrary, culture jamming reads tamely, but has produced a practice that is intriguing, savvy, and at least modestly efficacious, resting as it does not on the random proposals of Lasn’s book but on employing the best practices of marketing itself—gripping rhetoric, potent graphics, and imaginative “detournements” of the conventional—to subvert the advertisers, the marketers, and the companies that employ them.

Bleeding Edge by Pynchon, Thomas

addicted to oil, AltaVista, anti-communist, Anton Chekhov, Bernie Madoff, big-box store, Burning Man, carried interest, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, East Village, Hacker Ethic, index card, invisible hand, jitney, late capitalism, margin call, Network effects, Ponzi scheme, prediction markets, pre–internet, QWERTY keyboard, RAND corporation, rent control, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley, telemarketer, Y2K

She tiptoes in about the time Daytona screams, “I’ll sign them muthafuckin papers then I’m outta here, you wanna be a dad, you take care of that whole shit,” and slams the phone down. “Morning,” Maxine chirps in a descending third, sharping the second note maybe a little. “Last call for his ass.” Some days it seems like every lowlife in town has Tail ’Em and Nail ’Em on their grease-stained Rolodex. A number of phone messages have piled up on the answering machine, breathers, telemarketers, even a few calls to do with tickets currently active. After some triage on the playback, Maxine returns an anxious call from a whistle-blower at a snack-food company over in Jersey which has been secretly negotiating with ex-employees of Krispy Kreme for the illegal purchase of top-secret temperature and humidity settings on the donut purveyor’s “proof box,” along with equally classified photos of the donut extruder, which however now seem to be Polaroids of auto parts taken years ago in Queens, Photoshopped and whimsically at that.

• • • DETECTIVE CARMINE NOZZOLI, with access to the federal crime database, turns out to be an unexpectedly obliging resource, allowing Maxine for example to run a quick make on Tallis’s fiber-salesman BF. On first glance, Chazz Larday is an average lowlife from down in the U.S. someplace, come to NYC to make his fortune, having emerged out of a silent seething Gulf Coast petri dish of who knows how many local-level priors, a directoryful of petty malfeasance soon enough escalating into Title 18 beefs including telemarketing rackets via the fax machine, conspiracy to commit remanufactured toner cartridge misrepresentation, plus a history of bringing slot machines across state lines to where they are not necessarily legal, and cruising up and down the back roads of heartland suburbia peddling bootleg infrared strobes that will change red lights to green for rounders and assorted teenage offenders who don’t like stopping for nothing, all at the behest allegedly of the Dixie Mafia, a loose confederacy of ex-cons and full-auto badasses very few of whom know or even like one another.

pages: 207 words: 52,716

Capitalism 3.0: A Guide to Reclaiming the Commons by Peter Barnes

Albert Einstein, car-free, clean water, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate personhood, corporate raider, corporate social responsibility, dark matter, diversified portfolio,, hypertext link, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, jitney, money market fund, new economy, patent troll, profit maximization, Ronald Coase, telemarketer, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, War on Poverty, Yogi Berra

If anything is a “tragedy of the commons,” this is it (though here, again, the commons is victim, not cause). Here are a few statistics that confirm what everyone knows. Children in America see, on average, one hundred thousand television ads by age five; before they die they’ll see another two million. In 2002, marketers unleashed eighty-seven billion pieces of junk mail, fifty-one billion telemarketing calls, and eighty-four billion pieces of email spam. In 2004, a Yankelovich poll found that 65 percent of Americans “feel constantly bombarded with too much advertising and marketing.” Advertising isn’t just an occasional trespass of one person against another; it’s a continuous trespass of relatively few corporations (the one hundred or so that do the most advertising) against all the rest of us.

pages: 177 words: 56,657

Be Obsessed or Be Average by Grant Cardone

Albert Einstein, Elon Musk, fear of failure, job-hopping, Mark Zuckerberg, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, white picket fence

I revolutionized the sales game when I was thirty years old and am still doing it today. I’ve created best-selling audio and video programs and have written books, all related to sales and growing a business. Being a sales genius also meant I could talk about different topics within sales, including closing the sale, customer service, customer control, follow-up, cold-calling, running a telemarketing team, long sales cycles, retail sales, Internet sales, webinars, selling from the stage, real estate sales, insurance sales, and on and on. Once I had this list, I came up with a short statement of who I am and why I dominate this particular area of expertise. My statement was “I am the Godfather of Sales. No one is better, no one is more current, no one is more effective or relevant than me.

pages: 187 words: 55,801

The New Division of Labor: How Computers Are Creating the Next Job Market by Frank Levy, Richard J. Murnane

Atul Gawande, business cycle, call centre, computer age, Computer Numeric Control, correlation does not imply causation, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, deskilling, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, Gunnar Myrdal, hypertext link, index card, information asymmetry, job automation, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, low skilled workers, low-wage service sector, pattern recognition, profit motive, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, speech recognition, talking drums, telemarketer, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, working poor

A farmer who could read still had to be entrepreneurial to risk trying the new techniques. In today’s economy, reading and math are similarly enabling—necessary for economic success but not sufficient. Begin with reading. If all a person can do is to follow written directions, he or she is limited to the kinds of tasks that can be expressed in rules-based logic. An example is making heavily scripted telemarketing calls. While these jobs require the ability to read, they typically pay only $6 to $8 an hour and they are increasingly vulnerable to both outsourcing abroad and computer-generated marketing messages. At the same time, a person who cannot read is lost in the computerized workplace. Reading well is essential for people to be able to acquire the knowledge needed to excel at expert thinking. A case in point is the transformation from the mechanical carburetor in automobile engines to computer-controlled fuel injection.

pages: 224 words: 64,156

You Are Not a Gadget by Jaron Lanier

1960s counterculture, accounting loophole / creative accounting, additive manufacturing, Albert Einstein, call centre, cloud computing, commoditize, crowdsourcing, death of newspapers, different worldview, digital Maoism, Douglas Hofstadter, Extropian, follow your passion, hive mind, Internet Archive, Jaron Lanier, jimmy wales, John Conway, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Long Term Capital Management, Network effects, new economy, packet switching, PageRank, pattern recognition, Ponzi scheme, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Stallman, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, slashdot, social graph, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, telepresence, The Wisdom of Crowds, trickle-down economics, Turing test, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Catalog

Despite some attempts, it doesn’t look as if the industry is able to agree on how to make this happen, so this annoyance seems to define a natural role for government. It is strange to have to point this out, but given the hyper-libertarian atmosphere of Silicon Valley, it’s important to note that government isn’t always bad. I like the “Do not call” list, for instance, since it has contained the scourge of telemarketing. I’m also glad we only have one currency, one court system, and one military. Even the most extreme libertarian must admit that fluid commerce has to flow through channels that amount to government. Of course, one of the main reasons that digital entrepreneurs have tended to prefer free content is that it costs money to manage micro-payments. What if it costs you a penny to manage a one-penny transaction?

Learning Node.js: A Hands-On Guide to Building Web Applications in JavaScript by Marc Wandschneider

database schema,, Firefox, Google Chrome, node package manager, telemarketer, web application

input: process.stdin, output: process.stdout }); var output = []; async.forEachSeries( questions, function (item, cb) { // 2. rl.question(item, function (answer) { output.push(answer); cb(null); }); }, function (err) { // 3. if (err) { console.log("Hunh, couldn't get answers"); console.log(err); return; } fs.appendFileSync("answers.txt", JSON.stringify(output) + "\n"); console.log("\nThanks for your answers!"); console.log("We'll sell them to some telemarketer immediately!"); rl.close(); } ); * * * The program performs the following tasks: 1. It initializes the readline module and sets up the stdin and stdout streams. 2. Then, for each question in the array, you call the question function on readline (using async.forEachSeries because question is an asynchronous function) and add the result to the output array. 3. Finally, after all the questions have been asked and async calls the results function, you either print the error if there was one or append the user’s output to the answers.txt file and then close the readline object to exit the program.

pages: 237 words: 66,545

The Money Tree: A Story About Finding the Fortune in Your Own Backyard by Chris Guillebeau

"side hustle", Bernie Madoff, Ethereum, financial independence, global village, hiring and firing, housing crisis, passive income, race to the bottom, rent-seeking, ride hailing / ride sharing, Steve Jobs, telemarketer

Later on he’d move over the rest of the stuff he’d been keeping at the office. Maybe he’d give Romeo George a call to see if he knew a furniture guy. As he was unpacking, trying to decide where to place his desk, thinking that he really should put up those groceries, he received some news that made everything else completely irrelevant. It arrived in a phone call from an unknown number, which he ignored at first. Must be telemarketers. When he didn’t pick up, he heard another ping with a message. “Jake, it’s Celia from the group. I got your number from Preena. Can you call me back ASAP?” He called her right away. “Celia? Hey, how are you and how are things with your web—” She cut him off. “Jake, listen. Where are you now?” “Uh . . . I’m at my apartment. I just got a new place and I’m un—” “Some of us are at the hospital.

pages: 227 words: 71,675

Rules for Revolutionaries: How Big Organizing Can Change Everything by Becky Bond, Zack Exley

battle of ideas, Bernie Sanders, call centre, centre right, cognitive dissonance, crowdsourcing, declining real wages, Donald Trump, family office, fixed income, full employment, hiring and firing, hydraulic fracturing, immigration reform, income inequality, Kickstarter, mass incarceration, Naomi Klein, Occupy movement, oil shale / tar sands, plutocrats, Plutocrats, randomized controlled trial, Skype, telemarketer, union organizing

They possess a down-to-earth professionalism that is sincere and authentic, and they have firsthand knowledge of the life-or-death stakes of the most urgent issues of the day, from income inequality to immigration reform to climate change. I’m serious when I say that if there are no nurses, I don’t want to be part of your revolution. In poll after poll, nursing is named by Americans as the most-trusted profession. No other profession is even close. Meanwhile, there’s a four-way tie for the least-trusted professions: lobbyists, members of Congress, telemarketers, and car salespeople. When National Nurses United endorsed Bernie Sanders for president (they were the first national union to do so), NNU president RoseAnn DeMoro said “Bernie’s issues align with nurses from top to bottom.” The same could be said about a true political revolution by the people. Not only do nurses’ issues align with a revolutionary agenda, but nurses make amazing revolutionary leaders.

pages: 232 words: 66,229

Hey Nostradamus! by Douglas Coupland

Berlin Wall, index card, Maui Hawaii, Silicon Valley, telemarketer

My cell phone battery was dead, so I went to a pay phone and checked my messages, and there was just one, a woman’s voice-nice enough, maybe fiftyish-and she had something to tell me she said was both unusual and urgent. And then she hung up, no phone number or anything. Well what was I supposed to make of that? I listened to the message again. She didn’t sound evil, and believe me, I’ve seen and heard so much evil in the courtroom that by now you could use my blood as an anti-evil vaccine. Who was this woman, and what exactly was she on about-telemarketing? If it had been something to do with Jason, I figured she would have used a different voice with a different tone. Meaning what, Heather? Meaning, this woman didn’t sound like the type to deliver ransom instructions or notify the cops to go looking in the Fraser River for a corpse rolled up in a discount Persian carpet. I know that voice, and it wasn’t hers. So I spent the rest of the afternoon slightly distracted, trying to pinpoint the nature of her voice, in the process even making some boo-boos on the court transcript-but it’s a dull-as-dishwater property suit, and the chances of anyone consulting the record are zero.

pages: 287 words: 80,180

Blue Ocean Strategy, Expanded Edition: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant by W. Chan Kim, Renée A. Mauborgne

Asian financial crisis, borderless world, call centre, cloud computing, commoditize, creative destruction, disruptive innovation, endogenous growth, haute couture, index fund, information asymmetry, interchangeable parts, job satisfaction, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, market fundamentalism, NetJets, Network effects, RAND corporation, Skype, telemarketer, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, There's no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home - Ken Olsen, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Vanguard fund, zero-sum game

It has done so by complementing its compelling value proposition with an unbeatable profit proposition that simultaneously achieves a low-cost structure while generating funds in a differentiated way. Traditional charities use a variety of methods to raise funds from several sources such as writing grant proposals to governments, trusts, and foundations; holding fund-raising galas for wealthy influential people and corporations; directly soliciting via mail and telemarketing; and operating charity shops. Almost all these activities entail significant overhead costs in staff, management, and administration as well as the possible renting or purchase of facilities. Comic Relief, by contrast, eliminated all of these. It doesn’t plow time and money into expensive fund-raising galas, it doesn’t write grants to solicit funds from governments and foundations, and it doesn’t have charity shops.

pages: 168 words: 9,044

You're Not Fooling Anyone When You Take Your Laptop to a Coffee Shop: Scalzi on Writing by John Scalzi

non-fiction novel, Occam's razor, place-making, rent control, Ronald Reagan, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, zero-sum game

But now, 15 years into the whole "writing career" thing, I'm here to tell you that I was cruelly deceived by my own attempts at sloth: Turns out writing—if you actually want to make a living from it, and I do—really is actual work. Naturally when I discovered this I was appalled and dismayed, but since at the time I was too far into the writing hole to be qualified to do any other sort of work that didn't involve a price check or reading a telemarketing script (which is even more like real work than what I was doing), I had no choice but to continue . Fortunately, overall things have turned out pretty well for me so far with this writing thing I've got going. By the end of 2006 I'll have published eleven books, fiction and non-fiction both, and aside from that I'll have written just about every sort of commercial writing there is to write save for a movie script (that's a special sort of hellish endeavor I suspect I would need to start drinking in order to contemplate).

pages: 254 words: 79,052

Evil by Design: Interaction Design to Lead Us Into Temptation by Chris Nodder

4chan, affirmative action, Amazon Mechanical Turk, cognitive dissonance, crowdsourcing, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Donald Trump,, endowment effect, game design, haute couture, jimmy wales, Jony Ive, Kickstarter, late fees, loss aversion, Mark Zuckerberg, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Milgram experiment, Netflix Prize, Nick Leeson, Occupy movement,, price anchoring, recommendation engine, Rory Sutherland, Silicon Valley, Stanford prison experiment, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, Tim Cook: Apple, trickle-down economics, upwardly mobile

FTC report: Negative Options: A Report by the staff of the FTC’s Division of Enforcement. Federal Trade Commission, January 2009. Class Action Lawsuit: Complaint document, Martha Cornett v. Direct Brands Inc. and Bookspan, United States District Court, Southern District of California. Filed Aug 4, 2011. Scholastic’s $710,000 fine: “Children’s Book Publisher to Pay $710,000 to Settle Charges It Violated Commission’s Negative Option and Telemarketing Sales Rule.” Federal Trade Commission ( June 21, 2005. Retrieved December 2012. Discount clubs: “Senate Commerce, Science & Transportation Committee report on Aggressive Sales Tactics on the Internet and Their Impact on American Consumers” ( Nov 17, 2009. Retrieved December 2012; and “Senate Commerce, Science & Transportation Committee Supplemental Report on Aggressive Sales Tactics on the Internet” (

CultureShock! Egypt: A Survival Guide to Customs and Etiquette (4th Edition) by Susan L. Wilson

air freight, anti-communist, call centre, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, land reform, RAND corporation, telemarketer, trade route

MANAGING YOUR MONEY: BANKS For a listing of Egyptian banks, addresses and phone numbers go to: Some Egyptian banks have Internet sites, for example: „ Banque Misr Website: „ Alwatany Bank of Egypt Website: „ Banque du Caire Website: Emergency Numbers (Cairo) „ „ „ American Express (24 hour customer service) Tel: (02) 2480-1530 Visa Card (Lost Cards) Tel: (toll free in Cairo) 510-0200-866-654-0128 (outside Cairo) 02-510-0200-866-654-0128 Western Union Money Transfer Tel: (02) 2755-5165 (Heliopolis); (02) 2796-2151 (Garden City) Website: (Click “Find A Location”) Resource Guide 311 TRANSPORT AND COMMUNICATIONS Train information/reservations Tel: (02) 2575-3555 Country and City Codes The country code for Egypt is 20 Selected City Codes Cairo Alexandria Aswan Luxor Hurghada 2 3 97 95 65 Telephone Service „ „ „ Mobinil (Their mobile numbers always start with ‘012’) Nile City Bldg. 2005C, Cornishe El-Nil, Ramlet-Boulaq Customer Service: 16110 (from any line); 110 (from a Mobinil line) Website: Vodafone Egypt (formerly Click GSM. Their mobile numbers always start with ‘010’) Vodafone C2 Bldg., Cairo Telemarketing: (02) 2529-4444 (Sun to Thurs 9am to 5pm) Customer Service: 16888 (from any line) Telecom Egypt (Landline service) Call centre: 111 (24 hours daily) Important Telephone Numbers „ International Operator 120 For Telephone Complaints „ HQ (Troubleshooting) 188 312 CultureShock! Egypt INTERNET CAFÉS AND SERVICE PROVIDERS „ „ „ „ Internet Egypt 2 Midan Simon Bolivar, Ground Floor, Garden City, Cairo Tel: 19665; fax: (02) 2794-9611 Email: Website: At Internet Egypt, you can get free through DSL service (at a reasonable rate) and it has four cybercafés throughout Cairo.

pages: 361 words: 81,068

The Internet Is Not the Answer by Andrew Keen

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Airbnb, AltaVista, Andrew Keen, augmented reality, Bay Area Rapid Transit, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, Black Swan, Bob Geldof, Burning Man, Cass Sunstein, citizen journalism, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, collective bargaining, Colonization of Mars, computer age, connected car, creative destruction, cuban missile crisis, David Brooks, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, Donald Davies, Downton Abbey, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Filter Bubble, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frank Gehry, Frederick Winslow Taylor, frictionless, full employment, future of work, gig economy, global village, Google bus, Google Glasses, Hacker Ethic, happiness index / gross national happiness, income inequality, index card, informal economy, information trail, Innovator's Dilemma, Internet of things, Isaac Newton, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, Joi Ito, Joseph Schumpeter, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Kodak vs Instagram, Lean Startup, libertarian paternalism, lifelogging, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Martin Wolf, Metcalfe’s law, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Nate Silver, Nelson Mandela, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, nonsequential writing, Norbert Wiener, Norman Mailer, Occupy movement, packet switching, PageRank, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, Paul Graham, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer rental, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Potemkin village, precariat, pre–internet, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Metcalfe, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Skype, smart cities, Snapchat, social web, South of Market, San Francisco, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, TaskRabbit, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, The Future of Employment, the medium is the message, the new new thing, Thomas L Friedman, Travis Kalanick, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Uber for X, uber lyft, urban planning, Vannevar Bush, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, winner-take-all economy, working poor, Y Combinator

Citing a paper by Oxford University’s Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael Osborne that predicts that 47% of all American jobs might be lost in the next couple of decades,40 the Atlantic’s Derek Thompson speculates on “which half” of the workforce could be made redundant by robots. Of the ten jobs that have a 99% likelihood of being replaced by networked software and automation over the next quarter century, Thompson includes tax preparers, library technicians, telemarketers, sewers in clothing factories, accounts clerks, and photographic process workers.41 While it’s all very well to speculate about who will lose their jobs because of automation, Thompson says, “the truth is scarier. We don’t have a clue.”42 But Thompson is wrong. The writing is on the wall about both the winners and the losers in this dehumanizing race between computers and people. We do indeed have more than a clue about its outcome.

pages: 270 words: 79,992

The End of Big: How the Internet Makes David the New Goliath by Nicco Mele

4chan, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Airbnb, Amazon Web Services, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, big-box store, bitcoin, business climate, call centre, Cass Sunstein, centralized clearinghouse, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, cloud computing, collaborative consumption, collaborative editing, commoditize, creative destruction, crony capitalism, cross-subsidies, crowdsourcing, David Brooks, death of newspapers, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart,, Exxon Valdez, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Filter Bubble, Firefox, global supply chain, Google Chrome, Gordon Gekko, Hacker Ethic, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, Khan Academy, Kickstarter, Lean Startup, Mark Zuckerberg, minimum viable product, Mitch Kapor, Mohammed Bouazizi, Mother of all demos, Narrative Science, new economy, Occupy movement, old-boy network, peer-to-peer, period drama, Peter Thiel, pirate software, publication bias, Robert Metcalfe, Ronald Reagan, Ronald Reagan: Tear down this wall, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, social web, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, Stuxnet, Ted Nelson, Telecommunications Act of 1996, telemarketer, The Wisdom of Crowds, transaction costs, uranium enrichment, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, Zipcar

Qtd. in Christopher Matthews, Hardball: How Politics is Played—Told by One Who Knows the Game (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1999), 155. 11. John Aldrich, “The Invisible Primary and Its Effects on Democratic Choice.” PS: Political Science and Politics 42, no. 1 (2009): 33–38. 12. 13. 14. 15.; see also 16. In John Tedesco and Andrew Paul Williams, The Internet Election: Perspectives on the Web in Campaign 2004 (Lanham: Rowman and Littlefield, 2006). 17. Qtd. in James Barnes, “For Now, the Joke’s on the Establishment,” National Journal 30 Aug. 2003. 18.

pages: 304 words: 85,291

Cities: The First 6,000 Years by Monica L. Smith

clean water, diversified portfolio, failed state, financial innovation, hiring and firing, invention of writing, Jane Jacobs, New Urbanism, payday loans, place-making, Ponzi scheme, South China Sea, telemarketer, the built environment, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, trade route, urban planning, urban renewal, wikimedia commons

Family structures reinforce our diurnal programming because children and older people generally are not out and about at night, so those who are their caretakers also expect to be indoors with them from nightfall to dawn. Our entertainment follows the oscillation of the sun, too. Although there are now many more ways to watch television programs, for example, we nevertheless have a sense that the “prime time” for relaxation and entertainment is equivalent to the early evening hours. We are ready prey for those who expect us to be home, as known by telemarketers who target their customers between dinner and bedtime. Our diurnal patterns set conditions on infrastructure, too. Commuting to the kinds of white-collar work that cities make possible will continue to be between 6:00–9:00 a.m. and 4:00–7:00 p.m., which means that there will always be a need to tailor transportation networks to concepts of a “rush hour” instead of spreading out infrastructure timings as if there were a 24/7 world of steady demand.

pages: 324 words: 86,056

The Socialist Manifesto: The Case for Radical Politics in an Era of Extreme Inequality by Bhaskar Sunkara

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, agricultural Revolution, Bernie Sanders, British Empire, business climate, business cycle, capital controls, centre right, Charles Lindbergh, collective bargaining, Deng Xiaoping, deskilling, Donald Trump, equal pay for equal work, feminist movement, Ferguson, Missouri, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, gig economy, Gunnar Myrdal, happiness index / gross national happiness, Honoré de Balzac, income inequality, inventory management, labor-force participation, land reform, land value tax, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, Neil Kinnock, new economy, Occupy movement, postindustrial economy, precariat, race to the bottom, Ralph Waldo Emerson, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, single-payer health, telemarketer, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, urban renewal, We are the 99%

When I was in high school and I told people I was a socialist, they looked at me as if I were crazy. When I tell people I’m a socialist today, they just nod and go about their day—not a hint of physical revulsion. I discovered socialism largely by chance. My parents immigrated to the United States from Trinidad and Tobago with four children shortly before I was born. My mother worked nights as a telemarketer, my father, a declassed professional, eventually as a civil servant in New York City. After hopping around for a bit, they rented in a suburban town with a good school district. Even though we didn’t have much, I had enough—a decent home, a great education, basketball courts, and a public library where I spent way too much of my youth. My life was far more comfortable than the world my parents were born into, or even that of my older siblings.

pages: 244 words: 85,379

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King

Bonfire of the Vanities, fear of failure, In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, old-boy network, pink-collar, telemarketer, traveling salesman, War on Poverty

As I’ve said, we’ve all heard someone say, “Man, it was so great (or so horrible/strange/funny) … I just can’t describe it!” If you want to be a successful writer, you must be able to describe it, and in a way that will cause your reader to prickle with recognition. If you can do this, you will be paid for your labors, and deservedly so. If you can’t, you’re going to collect a lot of rejection slips and perhaps explore a career in the fascinating world of telemarketing. Thin description leaves the reader feeling bewildered and nearsighted. Overdescription buries him or her in details and images. The trick is to find a happy medium. It’s also important to know what to describe and what can be left alone while you get on with your main job, which is telling a story. I’m not particularly keen on writing which exhaustively describes the physical characteristics of the people in the story and what they’re wearing (I find wardrobe inventory particularly irritating; if I want to read descriptions of clothes, I can always get a J.

pages: 271 words: 83,944

The Sellout: A Novel by Paul Beatty

affirmative action, cognitive dissonance, conceptual framework, desegregation, El Camino Real, haute couture, illegal immigration, Lao Tzu, late fees, mass incarceration, p-value, publish or perish, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, telemarketer, theory of mind, War on Poverty, white flight, yellow journalism

Even though she was exhausted and growing more and more despondent with each bumpy rise and fall of the worn-out suspension, she preferred to stand rather than to sit next to me. They come to L.A. aspiring to be white. Even the ones who are biologically white aren’t white white. Laguna Beach volleyball white. Bel Air white. Omakaze white. Spicolli white. Brett Easton Ellis white. Three first names white. Valet parking white. Brag about your Native American, Argentinian, Portuguese ancestry white. Pho white. Paparazzi white. I once got fired from a telemarketing job, now look at me, I’m famous white. Calabazas white. I love L.A. It’s the only place where you can go skiing, to the beach and to the desert all in one day white. She held on to her vision rather than sit next to me, not that I blamed her, because by the time the bus hit Figueroa Boulevard, there were a number of people on board whom I wouldn’t have chosen to sit next to, either. Like the insane fucker who repeatedly pressed the “Stop Requested” button.

pages: 339 words: 94,769

Possible Minds: Twenty-Five Ways of Looking at AI by John Brockman

AI winter, airport security, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, artificial general intelligence, Asilomar, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Benoit Mandelbrot, Bill Joy: nanobots, Buckminster Fuller, cellular automata, Claude Shannon: information theory, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Danny Hillis, David Graeber, easy for humans, difficult for computers, Elon Musk, Eratosthenes, Ernest Rutherford, finite state, friendly AI, future of work, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, gig economy, income inequality, industrial robot, information retrieval, invention of writing, James Watt: steam engine, Johannes Kepler, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Laplace demon, Loebner Prize, market fundamentalism, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Norbert Wiener, optical character recognition, pattern recognition, personalized medicine, Picturephone, profit maximization, profit motive, RAND corporation, random walk, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, Rodney Brooks, self-driving car, sexual politics, Silicon Valley, Skype, social graph, speech recognition, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, strong AI, superintelligent machines, supervolcano, technological singularity, technoutopianism, telemarketer, telerobotics, the scientific method, theory of mind, Turing machine, Turing test, universal basic income, Upton Sinclair, Von Neumann architecture, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K, zero-sum game

Rather, what happened is what the anthropologist and anarchist David Graeber describes as the growth of “bullshit jobs.”* While jobs that produce essentials like food, shelter, and goods have been largely automated away, we have seen an enormous expansion of sectors like corporate law, academic and health administration (as opposed to actual teaching, research, and the practice of medicine), “human resources,” and public relations, not to mention new industries like financial services and telemarketing and ancillary industries in the so-called gig economy that serve those who are too busy doing all that additional work. How will societies cope with technology’s increasingly rapid destruction of entire professions and throwing large numbers of people out of work? Some argue that this concern is based on a false premise, because new jobs spring up that didn’t exist before, but as Graeber points out, these new jobs won’t necessarily be rewarding or fulfilling.

Making It All Work: Winning at the Game of Work and the Business of Life by David Allen

cognitive dissonance, index card, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, shareholder value, Skype, telemarketer

In addition to all the stuff you interact with that you need to address, there are many other things that show up in your world that, while needing no further action or commitment on your part, do require you to make a determination about which of the following three subcategories each one of them falls into: It’s Meaningless An obvious set of items that have a discrete meaning would be those that actually have no meaning at all: things you no longer need, or didn’t need in the first place—junk mail to toss, e-mails that have no interest or relevance to you, absurd telemarketing messages on your answering machine. This category includes anything in your environment that has no reason to be there, or to exist at all. Think of it as fodder for the Delete key on your computer, your wastebasket, recycle bin, Dumpster, shredder, or local charity. Trash, once it is determined to be so, is usually not a problem, unless your garbage collection service in on strike, your kitchen disposal is broken, or you’re just too lazy to pull out the dead rose from the garden.

pages: 318 words: 93,502

The Two-Income Trap: Why Middle-Class Parents Are Going Broke by Elizabeth Warren, Amelia Warren Tyagi

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, business climate, Columbine, declining real wages, equal pay for equal work, feminist movement, financial independence, labor-force participation, late fees, McMansion, mortgage debt, new economy, New Journalism, payday loans, school choice, school vouchers, telemarketer, urban sprawl, women in the workforce

In addition, under the current SSDI guidelines, the disability must be so severe that the individual is unable to perform any job anywhere in the entire country, not just the job for which the worker is trained and has spent a lifetime building skills and qualifications. This means that someone who had worked for decades as an electrician or as a surgeon, but who developed a disability that prevented him from performing those duties, would not receive a single dime if he were deemed well enough to work as a telemarketer or a toll collector. The SSDI program could be modified to provide a sliding benefit depending on the level of disability (akin to many private disability policies), and temporary benefits could be offered while the worker undergoes retraining. Universal, state-sponsored disability benefits would be ideal to fill the gap in the safety net. But families don’t have to sit back and wait for the government to take action; they can purchase insurance in the private market, either through their employers or on their own.

pages: 327 words: 88,121

The Vanishing Neighbor: The Transformation of American Community by Marc J. Dunkelman

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Albert Einstein, assortative mating, Berlin Wall, big-box store, blue-collar work, Bretton Woods, Broken windows theory, business cycle, call centre, clean water, cuban missile crisis, dark matter, David Brooks, delayed gratification, different worldview, double helix, Downton Abbey, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Filter Bubble, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Santayana, Gini coefficient, glass ceiling, global supply chain, global village, helicopter parent, if you build it, they will come, impulse control, income inequality, invention of movable type, Jane Jacobs, Khyber Pass, Louis Pasteur, Marshall McLuhan, McMansion, Nate Silver, obamacare, Occupy movement, Peter Thiel, post-industrial society, Richard Florida, rolodex, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, Skype, social intelligence, Stanford marshmallow experiment, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, The Chicago School, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the medium is the message, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, urban decay, urban planning, Walter Mischel, War on Poverty, women in the workforce, World Values Survey, zero-sum game

And because our more basic needs are met by a more limited pool of labor, a greater proportion of the American workforce—most of whom, in previous eras, would likely have toiled on farms and assembly lines—have been empowered to earn their livings by satisfying more fleeting demands. The guy who once might have worked in a steel mill now earns a living making custom window treatments. The woman who once would have done backbreaking labor on the family farm now works in the relative comfort of a telemarketing call center. Say what you will about which job you’d prefer in a perfect world, two things are true: food and steel satisfy a more basic need than window treatments and customer service, and the latter two jobs are significantly less taxing and dangerous. It wasn’t always obvious that things would turn out this way. In fact, John Maynard Keynes, arguably the most influential economist of the twentieth century, predicted decades ago that gains in productivity would drive the expansion of leisure.5 He worried about what the average worker would do with the extra time.

pages: 420 words: 98,309

Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts by Carol Tavris, Elliot Aronson

Ayatollah Khomeini, cognitive dissonance, cuban missile crisis, desegregation, Donald Trump, false memory syndrome, fear of failure, Lao Tzu, longitudinal study, medical malpractice, medical residency, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Milgram experiment, moral panic, Nelson Mandela, placebo effect, psychological pricing, Richard Feynman, Ronald Reagan, social intelligence, telemarketer, the scientific method, trade route, transcontinental railway, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!

About a fourth of the entire American adult population has been taken in by one scam or another, some silly, some serious: sweepstakes offers of having won a million dollars, if only you send us the tax on that amount first; gold coins you can buy at a tenth of their market value; a miracle bed that will cure all your ailments, from headaches to arthritis. Every year, Americans lose more than $40 billion to telemarketing frauds alone, and older people are especially susceptible to them. Con artists know all about dissonance and self-justification. They know that when people are caught between "I am a smart and capable person" and "I have spent thousands of dollars on magazine subscriptions I don't need and on bogus sweepstakes entries," few will reduce dissonance by deciding they aren't smart and capable. Instead, many will justify their spending that money by spending even more money to recoup their losses.

pages: 347 words: 91,318

Netflixed: The Epic Battle for America's Eyeballs by Gina Keating

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, barriers to entry, business intelligence, collaborative consumption, corporate raider, inventory management, Jeff Bezos, late fees, Mark Zuckerberg, McMansion, Menlo Park, Netflix Prize, new economy, out of africa, performance metric, Ponzi scheme, pre–internet, price stability, recommendation engine, Saturday Night Live, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Steve Jobs, subscription business, Superbowl ad, telemarketer, X Prize

In 1984, he helped found the U.S. version of MacUser magazine, which was brought to the United States by British publisher Felix Dennis and pornography impresario Peter Godfrey to capitalize on the growing consumer interest in PCs. About a year later, Godfrey tapped Randolph to a start a new venture—the computer mail-order businesses MacWarehouse and MicroWarehouse. Randolph chose the product mix, published the mail-order catalogs, and set up the telemarketing sales force. Here Randolph learned that overnight delivery coupled with superior customer service translated into increased sales and better retention. He partnered with up-and-coming overnight shipper Federal Express and targeted zero tolerance for shipping errors. At the end of each day his customer service workers called to apologize to people whose orders had not shipped. “Every customer you get, you’re never going to lose them” was Randolph’s mantra.

pages: 287 words: 92,194

Sex Power Money by Sara Pascoe

Albert Einstein, call centre, Donald Trump, Firefox, gender pay gap, invention of movable type, Louis Daguerre, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Neil Kinnock, phenotype, telemarketer, twin studies, zero-sum game

Bitches after their money. EXCUS— I’m winding you up. The thing is, I LOVE joking, it’s my profession. There’s great difficulty in proving someone ‘meant’ what they claim was a joke. Jokes are usually monstrous. We laugh when intentions are clear, we laugh because we know it’s pretence and grotesquerie. Yet even when joking, people lose their jobs for saying the sort of thing Trump did. But Trump wasn’t in a telemarketing or admin role which he could be fired from. No one told him, ‘We can’t allow that attitude in customer service – you’re dealing directly with the public,’ because he had no one to answer to. Grabbing women reflected how powerful he was. ‘You can do anything,’ he locker-roomed about his own authoritative position. I was reminded of the Ghostbusters film, when one of the ghosts begins absorbing the other ghosts, sucking them inside him and becoming bigger and stronger and unbeatable.

Microserfs by Douglas Coupland

car-free, computer age, El Camino Real, game design, hive mind, Kevin Kelly, Maui Hawaii, means of production, Menlo Park, postindustrial economy, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley, Stephen Hawking, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, white picket fence

Bug Barbecue and I were wondering last week what's going to happen when this new crop of workers reaches its inevitable Seven-Year Programmer's Burnout. At the end of it they won't have two million dollars to move to Hilo and start up a bait shop with, the way the Microsoft old-timers did. Not everyone can move into management. Discarded. Face it: You're always just a breath away from a job in telemarketing. Everybody I know at the company has an estimated time of departure and they're all within five years. It must have been so weird - living the way my Dad did - thinking your company was going to take care of you forever. * * * A few minutes later I bumped into Karla walking across the west lawn. She walks really quickly and she's so small, like a little kid. It was so odd for both of us, seeing each other outside the oatmeal walls and oyster carpeting of the office.

pages: 976 words: 235,576

The Meritocracy Trap: How America's Foundational Myth Feeds Inequality, Dismantles the Middle Class, and Devours the Elite by Daniel Markovits

"Robert Solow", 8-hour work day, activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, affirmative action, Anton Chekhov, asset-backed security, assortative mating, basic income, Bernie Sanders, big-box store, business cycle, capital asset pricing model, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carried interest, collateralized debt obligation, collective bargaining, computer age, corporate governance, corporate raider, crony capitalism, David Brooks, deskilling, Detroit bankruptcy, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, Emanuel Derman, equity premium, European colonialism, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, fear of failure, financial innovation, financial intermediation, fixed income, Ford paid five dollars a day, Frederick Winslow Taylor, full employment, future of work, gender pay gap, George Akerlof, Gini coefficient, glass ceiling, helicopter parent, high net worth, hiring and firing, income inequality, industrial robot, interchangeable parts, invention of agriculture, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job satisfaction, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, labor-force participation, longitudinal study, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, Martin Wolf, mass incarceration, medical residency, minimum wage unemployment, Myron Scholes, Nate Silver, New Economic Geography, new economy, offshore financial centre, Paul Samuelson, payday loans, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Plutonomy: Buying Luxury, Explaining Global Imbalances, precariat, purchasing power parity, rent-seeking, Richard Florida, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, school choice, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, six sigma, Skype, stakhanovite, stem cell, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, telemarketer, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, Thomas Davenport, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, total factor productivity, transaction costs, traveling salesman, universal basic income, unpaid internship, Vanguard fund, War on Poverty, Winter of Discontent, women in the workforce, working poor, young professional, zero-sum game

Elections begin, in what is called the money primary, with summits at which hopefuls court favor from groups of super-rich donors, often in resort towns (for example, Rancho Mirage, California; Sea Island, Georgia; or Las Vegas). Winning, moreover, yields no relief from the need to raise money. A “model daily schedule” for congresspeople calls for more than four hours directly soliciting donors every day in office. This roughly triples the time spent discussing policy with nondonor constituents, a disparity so great that politicians are sometimes said to resemble telemarketers rather than government officials. When Mick Mulvaney, the Trump administration’s director of the Office of Management and Budget and (as of this writing) acting White House chief of staff, recently told the American Bankers Association that when he was in Congress, “If you’re a lobbyist who never gave us money, I didn’t talk to you. If you’re a lobbyist who gave us money, I might talk to you,” he merely said aloud what everyone in American politics already knows.

every day in office: See Ezra Klein, “The Most Depressing Graphic for Members of Congress,” Washington Post, January 14, 2013, accessed July 20, 2018, Hereafter cited as Klein, “The Most Depressing Graphic.” This roughly triples: See Klein, “The Most Depressing Graphic.” said to resemble telemarketers: See, e.g., David Jolly, interview with Norah O’Donnell, “Dialing for Dollars,” 60 Minutes, CBS, April 24, 2016. “If you’re a lobbyist”: See James Hohmann, “The Daily 202: Mick Mulvaney’s Confession Highlights the Corrosive Influence of Money in Politics,” PowerPost (blog), Washington Post, April 25, 2018, accessed July 20, 2018,

pages: 358 words: 95,115

NurtureShock: New Thinking About Children by Po Bronson, Ashley Merryman

affirmative action, Columbine, delayed gratification, desegregation, hedonic treadmill, impulse control, index card, job satisfaction, lake wobegon effect, longitudinal study, meta analysis, meta-analysis, randomized controlled trial, social intelligence, Steven Pinker, telemarketer, theory of mind

The more kids hear that message, the more quickly they will take this lesson to heart. The other reason children lie, according to Talwar, is that they learn it from us. Talwar challenged that parents need to really consider the importance of honesty in their own lives. Too often, she finds, parents’ own actions show kids an ad hoc appreciation of honesty. “We don’t explicitly tell them to lie, but they see us do it. They see us tell the telemarketer, ‘I’m just a guest here.’ They see us boast and lie to smooth social relationships.” Consider how we expect a child to act when he opens a gift he doesn’t like. We expect him to swallow all his honest reactions—anger, disappointment, frustration—and put on a polite smile. Talwar runs an experiment where children play various games to win a present, but when they finally receive the present, it’s a lousy bar of soap.

pages: 308 words: 98,022

Let's Pretend This Never Happened (A Mostly True Memoir) by Jenny Lawson

impulse control, Mason jar, Pepto Bismol, Rubik’s Cube, Saturday Night Live, telemarketer, Y2K

So I always assumed that the day I got engaged I’d be naked, covered in rose petals, and sleeping with the brother of the man who’d kidnapped me. And also he’d be a duke. And possibly my stepbrother. Then one of us would get stabbed with a broken whiskey bottle and/or raped. Turns out the only part I was right about was that one of us was going to get stabbed. IT WAS 1996, and Victor and I were still in college. At night he worked as a deejay, and I worked as a phone prostitute in telemarketing. We’d been living together for about a year when Victor decided it was time to get married, and (just to make it all rock-star romantic) he decided to propose on air. The only problem was that if he was on air he wouldn’t be there to physically make me say yes, and so instead he took the night off and set up a recording that would make it sound like he was calling in to the radio show to talk to the guy filling in for him.

pages: 193 words: 98,671

The Inmates Are Running the Asylum by Alan Cooper

Albert Einstein, business cycle, delayed gratification, Donald Trump, Howard Rheingold, informal economy, iterative process, Jeff Bezos, lateral thinking, Menlo Park, natural language processing, new economy,, Robert X Cringely, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, skunkworks, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, telemarketer, urban planning

Dexter has a pager, two cell phones, a pocket computer, and a wireless modem stashed in the pockets of his double-breasted suit as he walks between sound stages. He is a master of technology, and he can solve any problem. His colleagues are always calling him over to help find lost files for them, but he is really too busy for those time-wasting exercises. Clint is holding on line three! Roberto is a telemarketing representative for J. P. Stone, the mail-order merchant of rugged outdoor clothing. He sits in a carrel in a suburb of Madison, Wisconsin, wearing a telephone headset and using a PC to process phoned-in orders. Roberto doesn't know a thing about high technology or computers, but he is a steady, conscientious worker and has a wonderful ability to follow complex procedures without difficulty. After a few days of training, he has become one of J.

pages: 268 words: 109,447

The Cultural Logic of Computation by David Golumbia

Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, American ideology, Benoit Mandelbrot, borderless world, business process, cellular automata, citizen journalism, Claude Shannon: information theory, computer age, corporate governance, creative destruction,, finite state, future of work, Google Earth, Howard Zinn, IBM and the Holocaust, iterative process, Jaron Lanier, jimmy wales, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, late capitalism, means of production, natural language processing, Norbert Wiener, packet switching, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, RFID, Richard Stallman, semantic web, Shoshana Zuboff, Slavoj Žižek, social web, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Ballmer, Stewart Brand, strong AI, supply-chain management, supply-chain management software, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, The Wisdom of Crowds, theory of mind, Turing machine, Turing test, Vannevar Bush, web application

The result is a marketing system that boosts short-term marketing return and helps build customer relationships that improve long-term profitability” (Fair, Isaac n.d.). Profitable customer management begins with knowing your customers. Yet few companies have the cross-channel knowledge required for consistent, personalized customer management and marketing decisions. With MarketSmart, information is collected at all your push and pull touchpoints—including email, direct mail, stores, inbound and outbound telemarketing, Web sites and kiosks. As a result, you now can have a complete picture of each customer’s behavior and preferences—a picture that will help drive profitability across all of your channels and product lines. MarketSmart integrates powerful decisioning tools that help you create, test and execute strategies across your business. By combing Fair, Isaac’s goldstandard analytics with best-of-breed software tools, MarketSmart offers you unparalleled decisioning power.

pages: 335 words: 96,002

WEconomy: You Can Find Meaning, Make a Living, and Change the World by Craig Kielburger, Holly Branson, Marc Kielburger, Sir Richard Branson, Sheryl Sandberg

Airbnb, Albert Einstein, barriers to entry, blood diamonds, business intelligence, business process, carbon footprint, clean water, cleantech, Colonization of Mars, corporate social responsibility, Downton Abbey, Elon Musk, energy transition, family office, future of work, global village, inventory management, James Dyson, job satisfaction, Kickstarter, market design, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microcredit, Nelson Mandela, Occupy movement, pre–internet, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, working poor, Y Combinator

The entire sector is often unable to scale because donors don't want to dedicate resources to accelerators like technology or research and development of new impact models. Jeff challenged our longstanding assumptions that the business world makes the profits and then shares a little extra with a beholden charitable sector. He cautioned us that the charitable sector was often caught in a cycle of wasteful fundraising techniques, like for-profit firms that take up to 90 cents on the dollar for mass mailings, telemarketers, street canvassers, and those Sunday morning commercial pleas to send money.1 As social entrepreneurs, we could create financial sustainability for our projects. We were missing untapped opportunities by limiting ourselves to only traditional charitable models. Jeff planted the seed for a socially conscious revenue driver. Over the years, we had dedicated profits from our book sales and speaking honorariums to fund the charity.

pages: 317 words: 101,074

The Road Ahead by Bill Gates, Nathan Myhrvold, Peter Rinearson

Albert Einstein, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, Berlin Wall, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, Bob Noyce, Bonfire of the Vanities, business process, California gold rush, Claude Shannon: information theory, computer age, Donald Knuth, first square of the chessboard, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, glass ceiling, global village, informal economy, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, invention of writing, John von Neumann, knowledge worker, medical malpractice, Mitch Kapor, new economy, packet switching, popular electronics, Richard Feynman, Ronald Reagan, speech recognition, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, Turing machine, Turing test, Von Neumann architecture

Many people who telecommute find it liberating and convenient, but some find it claustrophobic to be at home all the time. Others discover they don't have the self-discipline to make it effective. In the years ahead, millions of additional people will telecommute at least part-time, using the information highway. Employees who do most of their work on the telephone are strong candidates for telecommuting because calls can be routed to them. Telemarketers, customer-service representatives, reservation agents, and product-support specialists will have access to as much information on a screen at home as they would on a screen at an office. A decade from now, advertisements for many jobs will list how many hours a week of work are expected and how many of those hours, if any, are "inside" hours at a designated location such as an office. Some jobs will require that the employee already have a PC so he can work at home.

pages: 374 words: 97,288

The End of Ownership: Personal Property in the Digital Economy by Aaron Perzanowski, Jason Schultz

3D printing, Airbnb, anti-communist, barriers to entry, bitcoin, blockchain, carbon footprint, cloud computing, conceptual framework, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Donald Trump, Edward Snowden,, endowment effect, Firefox, George Akerlof, Hush-A-Phone, information asymmetry, intangible asset, Internet Archive, Internet of things, Isaac Newton, loss aversion, Marc Andreessen, means of production, minimum wage unemployment, new economy, peer-to-peer, price discrimination, Richard Thaler, ride hailing / ride sharing, rolodex, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, software as a service, software patent, software studies, speech recognition, Steve Jobs, subscription business, telemarketer, The Market for Lemons, transaction costs, winner-take-all economy

Without the ability to tailor licenses, they argue, it will be more difficult for rights holders and retailers to tailor their prices. We interrogate those claims below. Licensing and Price Discrimination Licenses facilitate price discrimination. ProCD v. Zeidenberg illustrates this point well. ProCD wanted to sell its database to two different groups of customers at very different prices. Businesses like telemarketing companies were willing to pay high prices for ProCD’s database. But the average person has less money to spend and less interest in a phone database. So the price had to be lower. If ProCD charged a high price, businesses would buy, but normal people wouldn’t. If it charged a low price, both would buy, but ProCD would be leaving money on the table since businesses would have paid the higher price.

pages: 292 words: 99,273

Paddle Your Own Canoe: One Man's Fundamentals for Delicious Living by Nick Offerman

Berlin Wall, Downton Abbey, lateral thinking, Mason jar, telemarketer, wage slave, Wall-E

I could afford cigarettes, coffee, burritos, beer, and weed. I wanted for nothing, and I was making theater sixteen hours a day. I was lucky that my day job was also working in theaters as a carpenter, especially compared to many of the company members who had temp jobs in offices or other equally depressing grinds. There was one slow winter, however, that saw a few of us reduced to this quasi-telemarketing job set up by another charismatic Kabuki alumnus named Goldberg (our actual Achilles). The job was to sit in a cubicle and call cardiologists on the phone to ask them to review a new perfusion catheter that they had been utilizing. Adding to the bizarre flavor of the experience was the fact that the company had located its offices directly over the Fulton Street fish market, so this “cool” brick warehouse office absolutely reeked of fish.

pages: 349 words: 95,972

Messy: The Power of Disorder to Transform Our Lives by Tim Harford

affirmative action, Air France Flight 447, Airbnb, airport security, Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Amazon Web Services, assortative mating, Atul Gawande, autonomous vehicles, banking crisis, Barry Marshall: ulcers, Basel III, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Broken windows theory, call centre, Cass Sunstein, Chris Urmson, cloud computing, collateralized debt obligation, crowdsourcing, deindustrialization, Donald Trump, Erdős number, experimental subject, Ferguson, Missouri, Filter Bubble, Frank Gehry, game design, global supply chain, Googley, Guggenheim Bilbao, high net worth, Inbox Zero, income inequality, industrial cluster, Internet of things, Jane Jacobs, Jeff Bezos, Loebner Prize, Louis Pasteur, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, Merlin Mann, microbiome, out of africa, Paul Erdős, Richard Thaler, Rosa Parks, self-driving car, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, telemarketer, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, Turing test, urban decay, William Langewiesche

• • • Sometimes it is wise not to improvise. If you never speak in public but must say something at a wedding, and your highest ambition is not to embarrass yourself, then the risk-reward calculation is likely to point to writing a script. But if you are delivering a talk that should be informal and interactive, yet you are reading out a backdrop of bullet-point slides, you’ve cast a vote of no confidence in yourself—just as a telemarketing script is the micromanagers’ vote of no confidence in their junior staff. So what does it take to successfully improvise? The first element, paradoxically, is practice. Comedians and musicians must also practice their craft until much of what they do is entirely unconscious. “Reflection and attention are of scarcely any service in the matter,” wrote the pianist and teacher Carl Czerny, back in 1839.

pages: 309 words: 95,644

On Writing Well (30th Anniversary Edition) by William Zinsser

affirmative action, Alistair Cooke, Donald Trump, feminist movement, In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, Joan Didion, New Journalism, Norman Mailer, popular capitalism, telemarketer, Thomas L Friedman

It’s also what stockholders want from their corporation, what customers want from their bank, what the widow wants from the agency that’s handling her social security. There is a deep yearning for human contact and a resentment of bombast. Recently I got a “Dear Customer” letter from the company that supplies my computer needs. It began: “Effective March 30 we will be migrating our end user order entry and supplies referral processing to a new telemarketing center.” I finally figured out that they had a new 800 number and that the end user was me. Any organization that won’t take the trouble to be both clear and personal in its writing will lose friends, customers and money. Let me put it another way for business executives: a shortfall will be experienced in anticipated profitability. Here’s an example of how companies throw away their humanity with pretentious language.

Stasiland: Stories From Behind the Berlin Wall by Anna Funder

Berlin Wall, centre right, Fall of the Berlin Wall, index card, Kickstarter, Mikhail Gorbachev, telemarketer, the built environment

I mediate between them and the East Germans, because the westerners don’t speak their language. The easterners are wary because of their fancy clothes, their Mercedes Benzes, and so on.’ Terrific. Here he is once more getting the trust of his people and selling them cheap. Stasi men are by and large less affected by the unemployment that has consumed East Germany since the Wall came down. Many of them have found work in insurance, telemarketing and real estate. None of these businesses existed in the GDR. But the Stasi were, in effect, trained for them, schooled in the art of convincing people to do things against their own self-interest. ‘We never thought, no-one ever thought, that it would all come to an end,’ he says. ‘It would not have occurred to anyone that our country could somehow cease to be. Just like that! Up on the sixth floor over there’—he gestures again with his head in the direction of the academy across the road—‘at the end of 1989 we used to joke around.

pages: 331 words: 96,989

Irresistible: The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked by Adam L. Alter

Alexey Pajitnov wrote Tetris, augmented reality, barriers to entry, call centre, Cass Sunstein, cognitive dissonance, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, easy for humans, difficult for computers,, experimental subject, game design, Google Glasses, IKEA effect, Inbox Zero, Kickstarter, loss aversion, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, mental accounting, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Oculus Rift, Richard Thaler, side project, Skype, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, telemarketer

They forget that exercise is primarily designed to make them healthier, developing stress-related injuries instead in the quest for arbitrary fitness goals. Beyond personal fitness devices, some companies gamify the workplace to motivate their employees. In 2000, four tech entrepreneurs formed a remote call center called LiveOps. LiveOps enlists more than twenty thousand everyday Americans to make telemarketing phone calls, and, more recently, to run the social media platforms of large organizations from Pizza Hut to Electronic Arts. The company vets agents before admitting them to its staff, and once accepted they can work as much or as little as they like in blocks of thirty minutes. All agents need are a landline phone, a computer, a high-speed Internet connection, and a corded headset. Some companies that use LiveOps pay by the minute—for example, twenty-five cents per minute spent on the phone—while others pay per call or per sale.

pages: 319 words: 103,707

Against Everything: Essays by Mark Greif

1960s counterculture, back-to-the-land, Bernie Madoff, citizen journalism, collateralized debt obligation, crack epidemic, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, deindustrialization, Desert Island Discs, Donald Trump, income inequality, informal economy, Joan Didion, Norman Mailer, Ponzi scheme, postindustrial economy, Ronald Reagan, technoutopianism, telemarketer, trickle-down economics, upwardly mobile, white flight

Of course, teen pregnancy didn’t lead to car keys; quite the opposite, as when we saw new mother Farrah unable, despite begging and tears, to get her mom to help her lease a Ford Focus so she could get out of the house sometimes on her own. Early pregnancy was declassing. Even this unusually wealthy-ish cheerleader had to surrender plans for college, eliminate her social life, and spend her time caring for the kid. Her after-school telemarketing job, shown in the first minutes of the program, at the end seemed like a lifetime fate. Or the teen could hand the baby over to a nice wealthy couple in their mid-to-late thirties, as Catelynn did on the season finale. I don’t know if either tale was cautionary. It all seems grim; yet the pregnancy series, as much as the party series, is unavoidably, unbelievably watchable, not in the manner of PBS-style vitamin-rich sociological documentary, but Technicolored.

pages: 325 words: 97,162

The 5 AM Club: Own Your Morning. Elevate Your Life. by Robin Sharma

Albert Einstein, dematerialisation, epigenetics, Grace Hopper, hedonic treadmill, impulse control, index card, invisible hand, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Kickstarter, Lao Tzu, large denomination, Mahatma Gandhi, Menlo Park, Nelson Mandela, New Journalism, Rosa Parks, telemarketer, white picket fence

The artist’s face had a “this makes me feel strong” smile on it. The homeless man burped, then got down to the floor and held a plank, the kind fitness pros at the gym love to do to build a strong core. You could hear The Spellbinder begin to cough even more fiercely. A brutal—and sustained—pause followed. Next, he uttered these words, haltingly. He was wheezing audibly. His voice began to quiver like a novice telemarketer on her very first sales call. Rising at 5 AM truly is The Mother of All Routines. Joining The 5 AM Club is the one behavior that raises every other human behavior. This regimen is the ultimate needle mover to turn you into an undefeatable model of possibility. The way you begin your day really does determine the extent of focus, energy, excitement and excellence you bring to it. Each early morning is a page in the story that becomes your legacy.

pages: 289

Hustle and Gig: Struggling and Surviving in the Sharing Economy by Alexandrea J. Ravenelle

"side hustle", active transport: walking or cycling, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, barriers to entry, basic income, Broken windows theory, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, cashless society, Clayton Christensen, clean water, collaborative consumption, collective bargaining, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, disruptive innovation, Downton Abbey, East Village, Erik Brynjolfsson, full employment, future of work, gig economy, Howard Zinn, income inequality, informal economy, job automation, low skilled workers, Lyft, minimum wage unemployment, Mitch Kapor, Network effects, new economy, New Urbanism, obamacare, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, passive income, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer model, performance metric, precariat, rent control, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ronald Reagan, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, strikebreaker, TaskRabbit, telemarketer, the payments system, Tim Cook: Apple, transaction costs, Travis Kalanick, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, ubercab, universal basic income, Upton Sinclair, urban planning, very high income, white flight, working poor, Zipcar

If the hours/times of work are dictated by the employer or market, the worker is not independent. Having employer-dictated hours is nothing new. Grocery store clerks and retail workers can’t just show up whenever they want—they have set hours. Law-firm attorneys, teachers, accountants, postal workers, emergency room doctors, and call center employees have their hours set by an employer and the market: no one wants their mail to arrive at midnight or to get a telemarketing call at 4 a.m. Some of these jobs also have staffing considerations: we want teachers to be present when students are at school and a certain number of doctors to fulfill the needs of a busy emergency room. There’s nothing wrong with requiring people to show up to work at certain times, but if you can’t do the job whenever you want, you should not be considered an independent contractor. If work is truly independent, then the worker gets to decide when it will be done and isn’t pushed into one time slot or another.

pages: 394 words: 110,352

The Art of Community: Building the New Age of Participation by Jono Bacon

barriers to entry, Benevolent Dictator For Life (BDFL), collaborative editing, crowdsourcing, Debian, DevOps, do-ocracy,, Firefox, game design, Guido van Rossum, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Jono Bacon, Kickstarter, Larry Wall, Mark Shuttleworth, Mark Zuckerberg, openstreetmap, Richard Stallman, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, slashdot, social graph, software as a service, telemarketer, union organizing, VA Linux, web application

Instead, turn everything on its head. What would make the worst possible cell phone? Maybe it ignores all calls? Or maybe it only accepts calls from telemarketing companies? Maybe the buttons are too small? How about really short battery life? When you ask these kinds of questions in a brainstorming session, it almost always breaks the ice and gets people talking. Such ridiculous questions generate a lot of fun discussion, laughter, and ludicrous ideas. Make sure you write down every one of these nuggets of madness. After your group has exhausted their initial pool of ideas, you should invert each idea again. How do we make sure that our phone accepts all calls? How can it avoid calls from telemarketing companies? How can we make sure the buttons are the right size and not too small? How can we improve battery life? Aside from the benefits of getting your group brainstorming, this approach is an excellent method in building defenses against the infuriation of normal life.

pages: 366 words: 107,145

Fuller Memorandum by Stross, Charles

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Beeching cuts, British Empire, cognitive dissonance, complexity theory, congestion charging, dumpster diving, finite state, Firefox, HyperCard, invisible hand, land reform, linear programming, MITM: man-in-the-middle, peak oil, post-work, security theater, sensible shoes, side project, Sloane Ranger, telemarketer, Turing machine

"Is it something in the water?" I poke at the Options set up in OFCUT admiringly. He's done a thorough job of porting it--this is almost as tightly integrated as the old version I used to have on my Treo, before they pulled it because it violated our RoHS waste disposal statement. HALF AN HOUR LATER, MY OLD AND UNWANTED MOTOROLA rings. I pick it up and see WITHHELD on the display. Which means one of two things: a telemarketer, or work, because I've put my unclassified desk phone on call divert. "Yes?" "Bob?" It's Andy, my onetime manager. Nice guy, when he's not stabbing you in the back. "What's up? You know I'm on--" "Yes, Bob. Er, it's about Mo." I sit down hard. "She's flying into London City from Amsterdam on KL 1557"--my heart starts up again--"and I think it would be a really good idea if you were to meet her in.

The Managed Heart: Commercialization of Human Feeling by Arlie Russell Hochschild

affirmative action, airline deregulation, call centre, cognitive dissonance, deskilling, Frederick Winslow Taylor, job satisfaction, late capitalism, longitudinal study, new economy, post-industrial society, profit motive, randomized controlled trial, telemarketer

The TV producers rightly supposed Miss Manners would favor smiling and wrongly supposed I'd oppose it. Trivial and serious, it all went into my researcher's notebook. On the scholarly front, I was also gratified to see my ideas applied, refined, and richly developed by other researchers. Scholars studied emotional labor among such employees as social workers, retail sales clerks, Disneyland ride operators, waitresses, receptionists, youth shelter workers, telemarketers, personal trainers, nursing home caregivers, professors, policemen, midwives, door-to-door insurance salesmen, police detectives, hair stylists, and sheriff's interrogators. Pam Smith, a former nurse, wrote a book about emotional labor of nurses, and Jennifer Pierce, a former student of mine, wrote one about the emotional labor of lawyers, paralegals, and secretaries.! Some of these workers were well-paid professionals, others were part of what Carmen Siriani and Cameron Macdonald call the "emotional proletariat."2 In their excellent 1999 essay, "Emotional Labor Since The Managed Heart," Ronnie Steinberg and Deborah Figart note the questions Afterword 201 various researchers have pursued - how much do we work on our own feelings and how much on those of other people?

pages: 427 words: 112,549

Freedom by Daniel Suarez

augmented reality, big-box store, British Empire, Burning Man, business intelligence, call centre, cloud computing, corporate personhood, digital map, game design, global supply chain, illegal immigration, Naomi Klein, new economy, Pearl River Delta, plutocrats, Plutocrats, private military company, RFID, special economic zone, speech recognition, Stewart Brand, telemarketer, the scientific method, young professional

Along the far wall stood several computerized milling machines with their operators focused intently on their work. The center of the room looked to be a staging area, bustling with young people, all wearing eyewear and gloves. To the side was a raised platform lined with office chairs and desks where a dozen people were grabbing, pulling, and pushing at invisible objects in the air. They were all speaking to unseen people, as though it were a call center. Fossen nodded. "Telemarketers." He turned to her. "This is one of those network marketing schemes, isn't it? I'm really disappointed in--" "Dad! It's nothing like that." She walked up to a canvas tarp draped over a large object. She pulled it away, revealing an old, wooden piece of equipment. Fossen stopped cold. "A Clipper . . . what's it doing here?" The antique seemed out of place amid the computer-controlled forklift trucks passing by.

pages: 377 words: 110,427

The Boy Who Could Change the World: The Writings of Aaron Swartz by Aaron Swartz, Lawrence Lessig

affirmative action, Alfred Russel Wallace, American Legislative Exchange Council, Benjamin Mako Hill, bitcoin, Bonfire of the Vanities, Brewster Kahle, Cass Sunstein, deliberate practice, Donald Knuth, Donald Trump, failed state, fear of failure, Firefox, full employment, Howard Zinn, index card, invisible hand, Joan Didion, John Gruber, Lean Startup, More Guns, Less Crime, peer-to-peer, post scarcity, Richard Feynman, Richard Stallman, Ronald Reagan, school vouchers, semantic web, single-payer health, SpamAssassin, SPARQL, telemarketer, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, the scientific method, Toyota Production System, unbiased observer, wage slave, Washington Consensus, web application, WikiLeaks, working poor, zero-sum game

The fund-raising consultant looks up their phone number in the phonebook or on Google, along with any other basic info they can find or glean about the donor, and prints it out on a piece of paper (a call sheet). This is called “prospecting.” A stack of such sheets is always kept in a binder and whenever a candidate gets a free moment, they are dragged to a closet with a phone and forced to do their call time. This is the real substance of the fund-raising consultant’s job: forcing the candidate to do the most humiliating and degrading and torturous work of the campaign—to become a telemarketer. The closet is typically kept far away from campaign headquarters and contains nothing besides the binder and the phone (step one: no distractions). Then the fund-raising consultant uses every psychological tactic in the book to sit there and force the candidate to make calls. And, eventually, they do—with all the results you’d expect. (“How did you get this number?” people demand. “I don’t know,” the candidate lies, “my fund-raising consultant gave it to me.”)

pages: 398 words: 108,889

The Paypal Wars: Battles With Ebay, the Media, the Mafia, and the Rest of Planet Earth by Eric M. Jackson

bank run, business process, call centre, creative destruction, disintermediation, Elon Musk, index fund, Internet Archive, iterative process, Joseph Schumpeter, market design, Menlo Park, Metcalfe’s law, money market fund, moral hazard, Network effects, new economy, offshore financial centre, Peter Thiel, Robert Metcalfe, Sand Hill Road, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, telemarketer, The Chicago School, the new new thing, Turing test

Besides aiding sellers in finally closing their Billpoint accounts, I reasoned that flooding the eBay corporate headquarters switchboard would also provide the auction giant’s staff with a vocal display of customer discontent. In addition to the e-mail, Sacks and I enlisted the help of April Kelly to manage an outbound call project to our high volume sellers. April was an entrepreneurial manager from our Omaha office who had supervised the telemarketing campaign in support of our debit card launch earlier in the year. Even though PayPal didn’t have a formal outbound call group—we still didn’t have enough customer service personnel to answer inbound calls at some peak times—April was a leading proponent of finding ways to turn our Omaha office into a profit center by helping customers learn more about new features. Her first outbound team had helped us increase debit card activation rates substantially, so with Peter’s blessing Sacks secured the resources necessary for her to participate in this crucial effort.

pages: 419 words: 109,241

A World Without Work: Technology, Automation, and How We Should Respond by Daniel Susskind

3D printing, agricultural Revolution, AI winter, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, algorithmic trading, artificial general intelligence, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, blue-collar work, British Empire, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, cloud computing, computer age, computer vision, computerized trading, creative destruction, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, demographic transition, deskilling, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Douglas Hofstadter, drone strike, Edward Glaeser, Elon Musk,, Erik Brynjolfsson, financial innovation, future of work, gig economy, Gini coefficient, Google Glasses, Gödel, Escher, Bach, income inequality, income per capita, industrial robot, interchangeable parts, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jacques de Vaucanson, James Hargreaves, job automation, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Joi Ito, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, Khan Academy, Kickstarter, low skilled workers, lump of labour, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, Metcalfe’s law, natural language processing, Network effects, Occupy movement, offshore financial centre, Paul Samuelson, Peter Thiel, pink-collar, precariat, purchasing power parity, Ray Kurzweil, ride hailing / ride sharing, road to serfdom, Robert Gordon, Sam Altman, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, social intelligence, software is eating the world, sovereign wealth fund, spinning jenny, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, strong AI, telemarketer, The Future of Employment, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, Travis Kalanick, Turing test, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, universal basic income, upwardly mobile, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, We are the 99%, wealth creators, working poor, working-age population, Y Combinator

For instance, it is very common to hear discussions about the chances of various jobs being automated, with statements like “nurses are safe but accountants are in trouble” or “X percent of jobs in the United States are at risk from automation but only Y percent in the UK.” One influential study, by Oxford’s Carl Frey and Michael Osborne, is often reported as claiming that 47 percent of US jobs are at risk of automation in the coming decades, with telemarketers the most at risk (a “99 percent” risk of automation) and recreational therapists the least (a “0.2 percent” risk).29 But as Frey and Osborne themselves have noted, conclusions like this are very misleading. Technological progress does not destroy entire jobs—and the ALM “job” versus “task” distinction explains why. No job is an unchanging blob of activity that can be entirely automated in the future.

pages: 416 words: 108,370

Hit Makers: The Science of Popularity in an Age of Distraction by Derek Thompson

Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Alexey Pajitnov wrote Tetris, always be closing, augmented reality, Clayton Christensen, Donald Trump, Downton Abbey, full employment, game design, Gordon Gekko, hindsight bias, indoor plumbing, industrial cluster, information trail, invention of the printing press, invention of the telegraph, Jeff Bezos, John Snow's cholera map, Kodak vs Instagram, linear programming, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Metcalfe’s law, Minecraft, Nate Silver, Network effects, Nicholas Carr, out of africa, randomized controlled trial, recommendation engine, Robert Gordon, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, statistical model, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Steven Pinker, subscription business, telemarketer, the medium is the message, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Uber and Lyft, Uber for X, uber lyft, Vilfredo Pareto, Vincenzo Peruggia: Mona Lisa, women in the workforce

Consider the nation’s most solemn arena for popularity contests: political elections. “Politics as entertainment” is a common phrase in the press, but the truth might be one letter off; for better or worse, politics is entertainment. Every political campaign is a media organization. Political campaigns spend half their money on advertising. Elected representatives spent 70 percent of their time engaged in what any sane person would recognize as telemarketing—directly asking for money, asking other people to ask for money, or building relationships with wealthy people, which is a politely indirect way to achieve the same goal. Even governance is showbiz: One third of the White House staff works in some aspect of public relations to promote the president and his policies, according to political scientists Matthew Baum and Samuel Kernell. The White House is a studio, and the president is its star.

pages: 413 words: 106,479

Because Internet: Understanding the New Rules of Language by Gretchen McCulloch

4chan, book scanning, British Empire, citation needed, Donald Trump,, Firefox, Flynn Effect, Google Hangouts, Internet Archive, invention of the printing press, invention of the telephone, moral panic, multicultural london english, natural language processing, pre–internet, QWERTY keyboard, Ray Oldenburg, Silicon Valley, Skype, Snapchat, social web, Steven Pinker, telemarketer, The Great Good Place, upwardly mobile, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!

The Harvard Dialect Survey results, downloadable in full, even found new life a decade later as the YouTube accent challenge, a viral video meme where thousands of people from around the world filmed themselves answering questions from the survey, and as the dataset at the base of “How Y’all, Youse and You Guys Talk,” the massively popular New York Times dialect quiz that introduced many people to the idea of mapping out how you speak in 2013. But if you’ve ever hung up on a telemarketer or fudged your answers to a “Which Disney Princess Are You” quiz, you know some of the potential problems with phone and internet surveys. On the phone, researchers could record audio, but they still had to have an individual conversation with each person they surveyed. While operating a Word Wagon or a linguistic phone bank is a fascinating job for the right type of language nerd (um, hi), such nerds still need to be paid for the massive amounts of time and labor they’re putting into the interviews.

pages: 298 words: 43,745

Understanding Sponsored Search: Core Elements of Keyword Advertising by Jim Jansen

AltaVista, barriers to entry, Black Swan, bounce rate, business intelligence, butterfly effect, call centre, Claude Shannon: information theory, complexity theory, correlation does not imply causation,, first-price auction, information asymmetry, information retrieval, intangible asset, inventory management, life extension, linear programming, longitudinal study, megacity, Nash equilibrium, Network effects, PageRank, place-making, price mechanism, psychological pricing, random walk, Schrödinger's Cat, sealed-bid auction, search engine result page, second-price auction, second-price sealed-bid, sentiment analysis, social web, software as a service, stochastic process, telemarketer, the market place, The Present Situation in Quantum Mechanics, the scientific method, The Wisdom of Crowds, Vickrey auction, Vilfredo Pareto, yield management

Place.╇ Place is where a product or service is actually sold in the marketplace. It is the location where the customer can purchase the product. A business can sell a product in many different places, and sometimes a small change can have a dramatically positive effect on sales. There are a variety of such places in the marketplace, including both physical and virtual. Some businesses sell directly via a salesperson. Others sell via telemarketing efforts. Some companies are primarily brick-and-mortar stores or sell in the retailer establishments of other businesses. Others are primarily catalogs or mail-order operations, whereas others sell at trade shows. Some sell in joint ventures with other similar products or services. Some companies use manufacturers’ representatives or distributors. Or course, many businesses sell via the Internet.

pages: 390 words: 115,769

Healthy at 100: The Scientifically Proven Secrets of the World's Healthiest and Longest-Lived Peoples by John Robbins

clean water, collective bargaining, Community Supported Agriculture, Donald Trump, happiness index / gross national happiness, illegal immigration, indoor plumbing, land reform, life extension, lifelogging, longitudinal study, Maui Hawaii, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Nelson Mandela, randomized controlled trial, Silicon Valley, telemarketer

Twenty-five percent of American households today consist of one person living alone; half of American marriages end in divorce (affecting tens of millions of children); more than a third of all U.S. births are to unmarried women, many of whom are not in committed relationships.3 Even within many families and marriages that are intact, there is profound disconnection and loneliness. There sadly seems to be something about the direction of modern Western civilization itself that undermines a sense of community and makes it harder to sustain positive relationships. A few years ago, when the Unitel Corporation moved a hundred telemarketing jobs out of Frostburg, Maryland, the company’s vice president, Ken Carmichael, explained that the move was made because the area’s residents weren’t pushy enough on the phone. The problem, he said, was “the culture and the climate in western Maryland, one of helping your neighbor and being empathetic and those sorts of things.”4 The trend toward isolation is taking place all over the industrialized world.

pages: 377 words: 115,122

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain

8-hour work day, Albert Einstein, Asperger Syndrome, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, call centre, crowdsourcing, David Brooks, delayed gratification, deliberate practice, game design, hive mind, index card, indoor plumbing, Isaac Newton, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, longitudinal study, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, Menlo Park, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela, new economy, popular electronics, Ralph Waldo Emerson, ride hailing / ride sharing, Rosa Parks, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, telemarketer, The Wisdom of Crowds, traveling salesman, twin studies, Walter Mischel, web application, white flight

By the final, most complicated set, the extroverts were much more likely than the introverts to abandon the task altogether. Introverts sometimes outperform extroverts even on social tasks that require persistence. Wharton management professor Adam Grant (who conducted the leadership studies described in chapter 2) once studied the personality traits of effective call-center employees. Grant predicted that the extroverts would be better telemarketers, but it turned out that there was zero correlation between extroversion levels and cold-calling prowess. “The extroverts would make these wonderful calls,” Grant told me, “but then a shiny object of some kind would cross their paths and they’d lose focus.” The introverts, in contrast, “would talk very quietly, but boom, boom, boom, they were making those calls. They were focused and determined.”

A Concise History of Modern India (Cambridge Concise Histories) by Barbara D. Metcalf, Thomas R. Metcalf

affirmative action, Berlin Wall, British Empire, colonial rule, commoditize, demand response, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, income inequality, joint-stock company, Khyber Pass, land reform, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, means of production, new economy, Silicon Valley, spice trade, telemarketer, trade route, upwardly mobile, urban planning

New communications also offered India unusual opportunities in a new kind of ‘service’ sector, namely the export of services that included computer software programming; clerical services, for example for medical transcription; and engineering services. Other service areas that began to emerge as potential exports included higher education in English; research, including clinical trials in such areas as pharmaceuticals; entertainment, both film and music; even transport repair and maintenance; and telemarketing. In these arenas, the Internet played a critical role (plate 9.7), and the Indian diaspora population – no longer thought of as a ‘brain drain’ – proved an invaluable resource. Perhaps the most problematic of the BJP’s achievements during the 1990s was its decision to develop a nuclear weapons capacity. The exercise of the ‘nuclear option’, as Vajpayee proudly proclaimed on Independence Day 2000, meant that ‘the very countries that imposed sanctions against us . . .

pages: 455 words: 116,578

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg

Atul Gawande, Checklist Manifesto, corporate governance, cuban missile crisis, delayed gratification, desegregation, game design, haute couture, impulse control, index card, longitudinal study, meta analysis, meta-analysis, patient HM, pattern recognition, randomized controlled trial, rolodex, Rosa Parks, Silicon Valley, Stanford marshmallow experiment, telemarketer, Tenerife airport disaster, Toyota Production System, transaction costs, Walter Mischel

At the core of that system were computer programs much like those Andrew Pole created at Target, predictive algorithms that studied gamblers’ habits and tried to figure out how to persuade them to spend more. The company assigned players a “predicted lifetime value,” and software built calendars that anticipated how often they would visit and how much they would spend. The company tracked customers through loyalty cards and mailed out coupons for free meals and cash vouchers; telemarketers called people at home to ask where they had been. Casino employees were trained to encourage visitors to discuss their lives, in the hopes they might reveal information that could be used to predict how much they had to gamble with. One Harrah’s executive called this approach “Pavlovian marketing.” The company ran thousands of tests each year to perfect their methods.9.20 Customer tracking had increased the company’s profits by billions of dollars, and was so precise they could track a gambler’s spending to the cent and minute.9.21, 2 Harrah’s, of course, was well aware that Bachmann had declared bankruptcy a few years earlier and had walked away from $20,000 in gambling debts.

pages: 352 words: 120,202

Tools for Thought: The History and Future of Mind-Expanding Technology by Howard Rheingold

Ada Lovelace, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, card file, cellular automata, Claude Shannon: information theory, combinatorial explosion, computer age, conceptual framework, Conway's Game of Life, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, experimental subject, Hacker Ethic, Howard Rheingold, interchangeable parts, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, Jacquard loom, John von Neumann, knowledge worker, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Norbert Wiener, packet switching, pattern recognition, popular electronics, post-industrial society, RAND corporation, Robert Metcalfe, Silicon Valley, speech recognition, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, Turing machine, Turing test, Vannevar Bush, Von Neumann architecture

Satellites and state-of-the-art computers and new software were added to accommodate up to a quarter-million subscribers. To those who can afford an initiation fee of $100, and a connect-time fee of $7 to $22 per hour, The Source and its newer competitor, Compuserve, offer computer owners admission to an electronic community-in-the-making. Besides remote computing, electronic mail, communications, telemarketing, software exchange, game playing, news gathering, bulletin board, and other services, The Source provides something called "user publishing." Since subscribers are billed according to how much time they spend with their computer connected to the Source host computer, it is possible to pay royalties to "information providers," based on a portion of that connect time. Every time a Source subscriber reads wire service information, the information provider gets a cut of the take.

The Fugitive Game: Online With Kevin Mitnick by Jonathan Littman

Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, centre right, computer age, game design, Hacker Ethic, Howard Rheingold, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, Menlo Park, Mitch Kapor, profit motive, Silicon Valley, Steven Levy, telemarketer

Live bands jam in one room, while strippers bump and grind in another. Then there's the VIP room, where the celebrities lounge in sixties beanbags and get high without being hassled for autographs. Eric wants a favor. How can she refuse? She's forgiven him for the manacles, the handcuffs, the gag, and the alligator clips. And she remembers the night Eric warned her about the phone tap on Spiegel's telemarketing boiler room operation. Erica and Henry's excon bank robber buddies worked his phone lines selling suckers on fictitious gold mines and phony office products. If not for Eric, she and Spiegel would surely have been busted for the three dozen phone lines running into Spiegel's house and the $150,000 in unpaid long distance bills. Sure, the Secret Service agents roughed them up a bit, even threatened to beat Spiegel if she wouldn't spill the beans, but Erica knew they didn't have any evidence.

pages: 570 words: 115,722

The Tangled Web: A Guide to Securing Modern Web Applications by Michal Zalewski

barriers to entry, business process, defense in depth, easy for humans, difficult for computers, fault tolerance, finite state, Firefox, Google Chrome, information retrieval, RFC: Request For Comment, semantic web, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, Turing test, Vannevar Bush, web application, WebRTC, WebSocket

In Internet Explorer, setting and reading third-party cookies is blocked by default, except for session cookies accompanied by a satisfactory P3P header. P3P (Platform for Privacy Preferences)[220] is a method to construct machine-readable, legally binding summaries of a site’s privacy policy, be it as an XML file or as a compact policy in an HTTP header. For example, the keyword TEL in an HTTP header means that the site uses the collected information for telemarketing purposes. (No technical measure will prevent a site from lying in a P3P header, but the potential legal consequences are meant to discourage that.) Note The incredibly ambitious, 111-page P3P specification caused the solution to crumble under its own weight. Large businesses are usually very hesitant to embrace P3P as a solution to technical problems because of the legal footprint of the spec, while small businesses and individual site owners copy over P3P header recipes with little or no understanding of what they are supposed to convey.

pages: 413 words: 119,587

Machines of Loving Grace: The Quest for Common Ground Between Humans and Robots by John Markoff

"Robert Solow", A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, AI winter, airport security, Apple II, artificial general intelligence, Asilomar, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, Bill Duvall, bioinformatics, Brewster Kahle, Burning Man, call centre, cellular automata, Chris Urmson, Claude Shannon: information theory, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cloud computing, collective bargaining, computer age, computer vision, crowdsourcing, Danny Hillis, DARPA: Urban Challenge, data acquisition, Dean Kamen, deskilling, don't be evil, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Hofstadter, Dynabook, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, factory automation, From Mathematics to the Technologies of Life and Death, future of work, Galaxy Zoo, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Grace Hopper, Gunnar Myrdal, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Hacker Ethic, haute couture, hive mind, hypertext link, indoor plumbing, industrial robot, information retrieval, Internet Archive, Internet of things, invention of the wheel, Jacques de Vaucanson, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Conway, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, labor-force participation, loose coupling, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, medical residency, Menlo Park, Mitch Kapor, Mother of all demos, natural language processing, new economy, Norbert Wiener, PageRank, pattern recognition, pre–internet, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Stallman, Robert Gordon, Rodney Brooks, Sand Hill Road, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, semantic web, shareholder value, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Singularitarianism, skunkworks, Skype, social software, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, Stephen Hawking, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, strong AI, superintelligent machines, technological singularity, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, telepresence, telepresence robot, Tenerife airport disaster, The Coming Technological Singularity, the medium is the message, Thorstein Veblen, Turing test, Vannevar Bush, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Whole Earth Catalog, William Shockley: the traitorous eight, zero-sum game

In order to be convincing, conversational software on a bank website might need to answer about 150,000 different questions—a capability that is now easily within the range of computing and storage systems. Despite their unwillingness to confront the human job-displacement question, the consequences of Capper and Zakos’s work are likely to be dramatic. Much of the growth of the U.S. white-collar workforce after World War II was driven by the rapid spread of communications networks: telemarketers, telephone operators, and technical and sales support jobs all involved giving companies the infrastructure to connect customers with employees. Computerization transformed these occupations: call centers moved overseas and the first generation of automated switchboards replaced a good number of switchboard and telephone operators. Software companies like Nuance, the SRI spin-off that offers speaker-independent voice recognition, have begun to radically transform customer call centers and airline reservation systems.

pages: 504 words: 126,835

The Innovation Illusion: How So Little Is Created by So Many Working So Hard by Fredrik Erixon, Bjorn Weigel

"Robert Solow", Airbnb, Albert Einstein, American ideology, asset allocation, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, Basel III, Bernie Madoff, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, BRICs, Burning Man, business cycle, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Cass Sunstein, Clayton Christensen, Colonization of Mars, commoditize, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, crony capitalism, dark matter, David Graeber, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, discounted cash flows, distributed ledger, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, fear of failure, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Gilder, global supply chain, global value chain, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Gordon Gekko, high net worth, hiring and firing, Hyman Minsky, income inequality, income per capita, index fund, industrial robot, Internet of things, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job satisfaction, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, Just-in-time delivery, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, laissez-faire capitalism, Lyft, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, market design, Martin Wolf, mass affluent, means of production, Mont Pelerin Society, Network effects, new economy, offshore financial centre, pensions crisis, Peter Thiel, Potemkin village, price mechanism, principal–agent problem, Productivity paradox, QWERTY keyboard, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, rent-seeking, risk tolerance, risk/return, Robert Gordon, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, savings glut, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, sovereign wealth fund, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, technological singularity, telemarketer, The Chicago School, The Future of Employment, The Nature of the Firm, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, total factor productivity, transaction costs, transportation-network company, tulip mania, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, uber lyft, University of East Anglia, unpaid internship, Vanguard fund, Yogi Berra

If the invention was left unchecked, a London writer argued in 1897, “we will soon be nothing but transparent heaps of jelly to each other.”76 Perhaps technology will not transform us into quivering mounds, but there is an expectation that it will push a good part of labor into the economic netherworld. Almost 50 percent of total US employment could potentially disappear within two decades, conclude Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael Osborne in a study of 702 occupations that could be affected by new technologies. The danger of becoming computer roadkill depends on the nature of your work; if you are a rental clerk or telemarketer, you are in for a rough ride, unless you are a computer of course. There is a race, the authors claim, between workers and technology, and “for workers to win the race ... they will have to acquire creative and social skills.”77 Such skills, however, have been important for employability for a long time and the labor market has changed profoundly over a long period of time. Entire professions have been eliminated, but new ones have also arrived.

pages: 480 words: 123,979

Dawn of the New Everything: Encounters With Reality and Virtual Reality by Jaron Lanier

4chan, augmented reality, back-to-the-land, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, carbon footprint, cloud computing, collaborative editing, commoditize, cosmological constant, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, Donald Trump, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Hofstadter, El Camino Real, Elon Musk, Firefox, game design, general-purpose programming language, gig economy, Google Glasses, Grace Hopper, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Hacker Ethic, Howard Rheingold, impulse control, information asymmetry, invisible hand, Jaron Lanier, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Kuiper Belt, lifelogging, mandelbrot fractal, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Minecraft, Mitch Kapor, Mother of all demos, Murray Gell-Mann, Netflix Prize, Network effects, new economy, Norbert Wiener, Oculus Rift, pattern recognition, Paul Erdős, profit motive, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Richard Feynman, Richard Stallman, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, Snapchat, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, telepresence, telepresence robot, Thorstein Veblen, Turing test, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, WikiLeaks, wikimedia commons

videogame spam speakers, audio special purpose simulators speech Speiginer, Gherix Spengler, Marie sphere, dividing spherical videos or spatial video capture Spiegel, Laurie Spielberg, Steven Spinal Tap spying algorithms spy submarine Stallman, Richard Stanford Research Institute (SRI) VALS (Values and Lifestyle Program) Stanford University computer music lab Starship Enterprise Star Trek TNG (TV series) Star Trek (TV series) startups Star Wars (film) State Department Station Q Steam gaming platform Stephenson, Neal stereo 3-D glasses stereo film viewing devices stereo pairing stereo vision Sterling, Bruce Stock Exchange Stone, Linda strategic forgetting string theory subjective experience Sufi Islam suicide, mass Suicide Club suits Sun Microsystems VPL acquired by support calls surgical simulator surveillance Survival Research Lab Sutherland, Ivan Switzerland Swivel 3-D Sword of Damocles symbolic communication symmetrical forms synesthetic sensations synthesizers systems writing tablet Tachi, Susumu tai chi taiko dojos tails Tanguay, Eva Tarahumaras music tarantula taste taxes Taxi Driver (film) teapot avatar tech companies culture of business model of tech culture. See also libertarianism tech journalism technology abundance and life cycle of teeth Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre Teitel, Mike tele-existence telemarketing telephone telepresence telescopes Tenniel, John Terak computer Tesler, Larry Texas text editing theater theme park prototypes theocracy therapy Theremin, Leon third arm 3-D, honest signals and 3-D design 3-D display monitors 3-D display walls 3-D effects 3-D glasses 3-D graphic cards 3-D graphics 3-D interactions 3-D modeler 3-D perception 3-D shapes, depth camera to derive 3-D sound 3-D TVs 3G wireless standard Tibetan ritual time, fight vs.

pages: 405 words: 121,531

Influence: Science and Practice by Robert B. Cialdini

Albert Einstein, attribution theory, bank run, cognitive dissonance, conceptual framework, desegregation, Everything should be made as simple as possible, experimental subject, Mars Rover, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mikhail Gorbachev, Milgram experiment, Norman Macrae, Ralph Waldo Emerson, telemarketer, The Wisdom of Crowds

The American investigators defined collaboration as “any kind of behavior which helped the enemy,” and it thus included such diverse activities as signing peace petitions, running errands, making radio appeals, accepting special favors, making false confessions, informing on fellow prisoners, divulging military information, etc. READER’S REPORT 3.1 From a Sales Trainer in Texas * * * The most powerful lesson I ever learned from your book was about commitment. Years ago, I trained people at a telemarketing center to sell insurance over the phone. Our main difficulty, however, was that we couldn’t actually SELL insurance over the phone; we could only create a quote and then direct the caller to the company office nearest their home. The problem was callers who committed to office appointments but didn’t show up. I took a group of new training graduates and modified their sales approach from that used by other salespeople.

The Future of Technology by Tom Standage

air freight, barriers to entry, business process, business process outsourcing, call centre, Clayton Christensen, computer vision, connected car, corporate governance, creative destruction, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, distributed generation, double helix, experimental economics, full employment, hydrogen economy, industrial robot, informal economy, information asymmetry, interchangeable parts, job satisfaction, labour market flexibility, Marc Andreessen, market design, Menlo Park, millennium bug, moral hazard, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, optical character recognition, railway mania, rent-seeking, RFID, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, six sigma, Skype, smart grid, software as a service, spectrum auction, speech recognition, stem cell, Steve Ballmer, technology bubble, telemarketer, transcontinental railway, Y2K

The fancy stuff In September, icici OneSource, an Indian bpo company which has so far concentrated on call-centre work, took a 51% stake in Pipal Research, a firm set up by former McKinsey employees to provide research services for consultants, investment bankers and company strategy departments. Mr Roy of Wipro Spectramind says that his firm is moving from basic call-centre work – helping people with forgotten passwords, for instance – to better-quality work in telesales, telemarketing and technical support. Wipro Spectramind is also spreading into accounting, insurance, procurement and product liability. “We take the raw material and convert it,” says Mr Roy, his eyes gleaming. “That is our skill – to cut and polish the raw diamonds.” The top end of the market is more interesting still. Viteos, an Indian start-up, pays new mba graduates in Bangalore $10,000 a year to administer American hedge funds, work that involves reconciling trades and valuing investments for a demanding set of customers.

pages: 405 words: 130,840

The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom by Jonathan Haidt

coherent worldview, crack epidemic, delayed gratification, feminist movement, hedonic treadmill, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, invisible hand, job satisfaction, Lao Tzu, longitudinal study, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Peter Singer: altruism, PIHKAL and TIHKAL, placebo effect, prisoner's dilemma, Ralph Waldo Emerson, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), social intelligence, stem cell, telemarketer, the scientific method, twin studies, ultimatum game, Walter Mischel, zero-sum game

U S E T H E F O R C E , L U K E In offering reciprocity as the best word to guide one's life, C o n f u c i u s was wise. Reciprocity is like a magic wand that can clear your way through the jungle of social life. But as anyone w h o has read a Harry Potter hook knows, magic wands can be used against you. Robert Cialdini spent years studying the dark arts of social influence: He routinely answered ads recruiting people to work as door-to-door s a l e s m e n and telemarketers, and went through their training programs to learn their techniques. He then wrote a manual23 for those of us who want to resist the tricks of "compliance professionals." Cialdini describes six principles that salespeople use against us, but the most basic of all is reciprocity. People who want something from us try to give us something first, and we all have piles of address stickers and free postcards from charities that gave them to us out of the goodness of their marketing consultants' hearts.

pages: 446 words: 138,827

What Should I Do With My Life? by Po Bronson

back-to-the-land, Berlin Wall, clean water, double entry bookkeeping, Exxon Valdez, financial independence, high net worth, job satisfaction, Menlo Park, microcredit, new economy, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, South of Market, San Francisco, special economic zone, Stanford marshmallow experiment, telemarketer, traffic fines, young professional

She gave advice, but did not put herself in a position to take action. She’s long thought it would make sense for her to take her business skills back to the arts, but she fears that arts administration will be boring. So she stays on the bus, and soon she’s not the young prodigy anymore. I have this term I use now and then: “Phi Beta Slacker.” If a traditional slacker hops between temping, waitressing, working at record stores, telemarketing, and more temping, Phi Beta Slackers hop between esteemed grad schools, fat corporate gigs, and prestigious fellowships, looking like they have their act together but really having no more clue where they’re headed than anyone else. And while slackers are not lazy by nature—they actually want to work, just not at the wrong thing or for the wrong reason—Phi Beta Slackers have a great gift for the world, if they can figure out what it is, or defuse whatever is holding them back.

pages: 407 words: 136,138

The Working Poor: Invisible in America by David K. Shipler

always be closing, Bonfire of the Vanities, call centre, David Brooks, full employment, illegal immigration, late fees, low skilled workers, payday loans, profit motive, Silicon Valley, telemarketer, The Bell Curve by Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray, union organizing, Upton Sinclair, War on Poverty, working poor

Furthermore, the time limit under the law was approaching—she had only a year and a half before her welfare payments would stop—so she scrambled to find employment. From time to time, she earned under the table by caring for children in her apartment in public housing. She applied for a bank teller’s position but then learned that the only openings were an hour’s commute, a trip she couldn’t make with two children of her own at home—kids who were not doing well in school. She applied for a telemarketing job, but smelled a rat when they asked her to spend $120 for “supplies,” including the smoke alarms she was to sell. She seemed to be spinning her wheels, sliding from one idea to the next with no forward motion. She could improve her typing and get an office job, she figured, or work in the insurance industry, perhaps in a billing department. That was especially appealing: She thought it would be nice to send out collection notices instead of receiving them.

pages: 311 words: 130,761

Framing Class: Media Representations of Wealth and Poverty in America by Diana Elizabeth Kendall

Bernie Madoff, blue-collar work, Bonfire of the Vanities, call centre, David Brooks, declining real wages, Donald Trump, employer provided health coverage, ending welfare as we know it, fixed income, framing effect, Georg Cantor, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, haute couture, housing crisis, illegal immigration, income inequality, mortgage tax deduction, new economy, payday loans, Ponzi scheme, Ray Oldenburg, Richard Florida, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, telemarketer, The Great Good Place, Thorstein Veblen, trickle-down economics, union organizing, upwardly mobile, urban planning, working poor

Airing from 1988 through 1997 on network television and still available on DVD and via global syndication, Roseanne has no doubt influenced 9781442202238.print.indb 142 2/10/11 10:46 AM Tarnished Metal Frames 143 viewers’ ideas about what it means to be white trash, portraying the working-class lifestyle as a mixture of tasteless behavior and the genuine love and respect that members of the Conner family show toward each other. Over the show’s nine-year run, Roseanne held several working-class jobs, including factory worker, hair washer at a beauty salon, magazine telemarketer, and waitress at the local mall. The family’s acceptance of its “white-trash” status was made clear to television audiences through comments the Conners made to each other as well as on a website (, which once pictured a small metal house trailer with the door wide open, chairs and flowers out front, giving the general impression that visitors were welcome. In this symbolic gesture, Roseanne aligned herself not only with the concept of white trash but with that of trailer park trash.

pages: 458 words: 137,960

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Albert Einstein, call centre, dematerialisation, fault tolerance, financial independence, game design, late fees, pre–internet, Rubik’s Cube, side project, telemarketer, walking around money

My mom once told me that my dad had given me an alliterative name, Wade Watts, because he thought it sounded like the secret identity of a superhero. Like Peter Parker or Clark Kent. Knowing that made me think he must have been a cool guy, despite how he’d died. My mother, Loretta, had raised me on her own. We’d lived in a small RV in another part of the stacks. She had two full-time OASIS jobs, one as a telemarketer, the other as an escort in an online brothel. She used to make me wear earplugs at night so I wouldn’t hear her in the next room, talking dirty to tricks in other time zones. But the earplugs didn’t work very well, so I would watch old movies instead, with the volume turned way up. I was introduced to the OASIS at an early age, because my mother used it as a virtual babysitter. As soon as I was old enough to wear a visor and a pair of haptic gloves, my mom helped me create my first OASIS avatar.

pages: 436 words: 76

Culture and Prosperity: The Truth About Markets - Why Some Nations Are Rich but Most Remain Poor by John Kay

"Robert Solow", Albert Einstein, Asian financial crisis, Barry Marshall: ulcers, Berlin Wall, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, business cycle, California gold rush, complexity theory, computer age, constrained optimization, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, correlation does not imply causation, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Donald Trump, double entry bookkeeping, double helix, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, equity premium, Ernest Rutherford, European colonialism, experimental economics, Exxon Valdez, failed state, financial innovation, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Akerlof, George Gilder, greed is good, Gunnar Myrdal, haute couture, illegal immigration, income inequality, industrial cluster, information asymmetry, intangible asset, invention of the telephone, invention of the wheel, invisible hand, John Meriwether, John Nash: game theory, John von Neumann, Kenneth Arrow, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, light touch regulation, Long Term Capital Management, loss aversion, Mahatma Gandhi, market bubble, market clearing, market fundamentalism, means of production, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, Myron Scholes, Naomi Klein, Nash equilibrium, new economy, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson,, popular electronics, price discrimination, price mechanism, prisoner's dilemma, profit maximization, purchasing power parity, QWERTY keyboard, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, random walk, rent-seeking, Right to Buy, risk tolerance, road to serfdom, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, second-price auction, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, South Sea Bubble, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, The Chicago School, The Market for Lemons, The Nature of the Firm, the new new thing, The Predators' Ball, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, total factor productivity, transaction costs, tulip mania, urban decay, Vilfredo Pareto, Washington Consensus, women in the workforce, yield curve, yield management

Moreover, the telephone company could profit not only from the extra telephone use that this created, but by persuading businesses to pay to have their numbers displayed more prominently. The yellow pages activities were spun off when AT&T was broken up. Yellow Pages became a business in its own right, and it attracted competitors, who would encourage people to use· their directories by providing more convenient listings. Other firms developed annotated lists of telephone customers to sell to those irritating telemarketeers. New technologies offered opportunities for CD-ROM and Internet-based directories and alternative number information services. Today a whole range of competitive businesses are engaged in the differentiated supply of the most boring information of all-lists of telephone numbers. The first maps were products of art and scholarship. The world grew (more of it was known) and shrank (access to it was easier).

pages: 567 words: 122,311

Lean Analytics: Use Data to Build a Better Startup Faster by Alistair Croll, Benjamin Yoskovitz

Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Amazon Web Services, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, barriers to entry, Bay Area Rapid Transit, Ben Horowitz, bounce rate, business intelligence, call centre, cloud computing, cognitive bias, commoditize, constrained optimization,, Firefox, Frederick Winslow Taylor, frictionless, frictionless market, game design, Google X / Alphabet X, Infrastructure as a Service, Internet of things, inventory management, Kickstarter, lateral thinking, Lean Startup, lifelogging, longitudinal study, Marshall McLuhan, minimum viable product, Network effects, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, performance metric, place-making, platform as a service, recommendation engine, ride hailing / ride sharing, rolodex, sentiment analysis, skunkworks, Skype, social graph, social software, software as a service, Steve Jobs, subscription business, telemarketer, transaction costs, two-sided market, Uber for X, web application, Y Combinator

Getting attention at scale means your product or service can stand on its own, without your constant love and feeding. In the Scale stage, you want to compare higher-order metrics like Backupify’s OMTM—customer acquisition payback—across channels, regions, and marketing campaigns. For example: is a customer you acquire through channels less valuable than one you acquire yourself? Does it take longer to pay back direct sales or telemarketing? Are international revenues hampered by taxes? These are signs that you won’t be able to scale independent of your own organizational growth. Is My Business Model Right? In the Scale stage, many of the metrics you’ve used to optimize a particular part of the business now become inputs into your accounting system. Data like sales, margins, and customer support costs now help you project cash flow and understand how much investment you’ll need.

pages: 455 words: 138,716

The Divide: American Injustice in the Age of the Wealth Gap by Matt Taibbi

banking crisis, Bernie Madoff, butterfly effect, buy and hold, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collateralized debt obligation, Corrections Corporation of America, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, Edward Snowden, ending welfare as we know it, fixed income, forensic accounting, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, illegal immigration, information retrieval, London Interbank Offered Rate, London Whale, naked short selling, offshore financial centre, Ponzi scheme, profit motive, regulatory arbitrage, short selling, telemarketer, too big to fail, War on Poverty

“We’re talking about a New Jersey statute,” Bowe said. “And if the intent of that New Jersey statute was to apply to the conduct in this case then the New Jersey Court should apply it without doing a balancing test to determine whether or not some other state has a bigger interest or not.” Hansbury shrugged, seeming unimpressed. When speaking to Bowe, he acted like a man taking a sales call from a telemarketer. I’d seen the same phenomenon at more than one white-collar fraud case. If judges in regular criminal courts treat everything that comes out of the mouth of a defense lawyer like a ploy to get some definitely guilty scoundrel out of trouble, in civil trials involving financial companies, they treat plaintiff’s counsel like parasites trying to use the courts to wrangle money out of hardworking, successful people.

Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia by Elizabeth Gilbert

index card, Nelson Mandela, nuclear winter, Socratic dialogue, telemarketer

But then I wonder—with all my restless yearning, with all my hyped-up fervor and with this stupidly hungry nature of mine—what should I do with my energy, instead? That answer arrives, too: Look for God, suggests my Guru. Look for God like a man with his head on fire looks for water. 50 The next morning in meditation, all my caustic old hateful thoughts come up again. I’m starting to think of them as irritating telemarketers, always calling at the most inopportune moments. What I’m alarmed to find in meditation is that my mind is actually not that interesting a place, after all. In actuality I really only think about a few things, and I think about them constantly. I believe the official term is “brooding.” I brood about my divorce, and all the pain of my marriage, and all the mistakes I made, and all the mistakes my husband made, and then (and there’s no return from this dark topic) I start brooding about David . . .

pages: 624 words: 127,987

The Personal MBA: A World-Class Business Education in a Single Volume by Josh Kaufman

Albert Einstein, Atul Gawande, Black Swan, business cycle, business process, buy low sell high, capital asset pricing model, Checklist Manifesto, cognitive bias, correlation does not imply causation, Credit Default Swap, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Heinemeier Hansson, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, Dean Kamen, delayed gratification, discounted cash flows, Donald Knuth, double entry bookkeeping, Douglas Hofstadter,, Frederick Winslow Taylor, George Santayana, Gödel, Escher, Bach, high net worth, hindsight bias, index card, inventory management, iterative process, job satisfaction, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Lao Tzu, lateral thinking, loose coupling, loss aversion, Marc Andreessen, market bubble, Network effects, Parkinson's law, Paul Buchheit, Paul Graham, place-making, premature optimization, Ralph Waldo Emerson, rent control, side project, statistical model, stealth mode startup, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, subscription business, telemarketer, the scientific method, time value of money, Toyota Production System, tulip mania, Upton Sinclair, Vilfredo Pareto, Walter Mischel, Y Combinator, Yogi Berra

Obtaining small Commitments makes it more likely people will choose to act Consistently with them later. Salespeople are often taught to do what they can to encourage their customers to start saying yes as soon as possible. By getting a “foot in the door,” they increase the probability that their prospect will take further action. That’s why so many activists use opening questions like “Do you care about child safety?” or “Do you care about the environment?” when telemarketing or collecting signatures on a petition. Most people do care about these things, so the reply is automatic and swift. Once you’ve said you care about something, however, it would be rude of you to refuse their request—it’s inconsistent with your previous statement. Obtain a small Commitment, and you’ll make it far more likely that others will comply with your request. SHARE THIS CONCEPT: Incentive-Caused Bias It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.

pages: 468 words: 150,206

The Food Revolution: How Your Diet Can Help Save Your Life and Our World by John Robbins

Albert Einstein, carbon footprint, clean water, complexity theory, double helix, Exxon Valdez, food miles, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), laissez-faire capitalism, longitudinal study, Mahatma Gandhi, meta analysis, meta-analysis, profit motive, Ralph Nader, randomized controlled trial, Rosa Parks, telemarketer

I started reading it and I couldn't put it down. I was especially impressed with the chapters on genetic engineering. Robbins explains the situation better than anyone I've ever heard. For the hundreds of thousands of people like me, whose lives have been forever changed by Robbins' work, The Food Revolution is a MUST READ. The word revolution is normally reserved in our society for guerrillas and telemarketers. THIS revolution is ours. It's a simple choice in the foods we eat that will have a radical effect on the world around us." Adam Werbach, Former President, Sierra Club "Beautifully written, The Food Revolution is a remarkable book by a remarkable man. It opened both my eyes and my heart. This is indeed a book that can save our lives." Riane Eisler, author of The Chalice and the Blade and Tomorrow's Children "The environmental health movement has become one of the most powerful grassroots movements of our time.

pages: 598 words: 134,339

Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World by Bruce Schneier

23andMe, Airbnb, airport security, AltaVista, Anne Wojcicki, augmented reality, Benjamin Mako Hill, Black Swan, Boris Johnson, Brewster Kahle, Brian Krebs, call centre, Cass Sunstein, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, cloud computing, congestion charging, disintermediation, drone strike, Edward Snowden, experimental subject, failed state, fault tolerance, Ferguson, Missouri, Filter Bubble, Firefox, friendly fire, Google Chrome, Google Glasses, hindsight bias, informal economy, Internet Archive, Internet of things, Jacob Appelbaum, Jaron Lanier, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, license plate recognition, lifelogging, linked data, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, moral panic, Nash equilibrium, Nate Silver, national security letter, Network effects, Occupy movement, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, payday loans, pre–internet, price discrimination, profit motive, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, recommendation engine, RFID, Ross Ulbricht, self-driving car, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, Snapchat, social graph, software as a service, South China Sea, stealth mode startup, Steven Levy, Stuxnet, TaskRabbit, telemarketer, Tim Cook: Apple, transaction costs, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, undersea cable, urban planning, WikiLeaks, zero day

Despite this, society continues to function, because the honest, positive, and beneficial uses of our infrastructure far outweigh the dishonest, negative, and harmful ones. The percentage of the drivers on our highways who are bank robbers is negligible, as is the percentage of e-mail users who are criminals. It makes far more sense to design all of these systems for the majority of us who need security from criminals, telemarketers, and sometimes our own governments. By prioritizing security, we would be protecting the world’s information flows— including our own—from eavesdropping as well as more damaging attacks like theft and destruction. We would protect our information flows from governments, non-state actors, and criminals. We would be making the world safer overall. Tor is an excellent example. It’s free open-source software that you can use to browse anonymously on the Internet.

pages: 479 words: 144,453

Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow by Yuval Noah Harari

23andMe, agricultural Revolution, algorithmic trading, Anne Wojcicki, anti-communist, Anton Chekhov, autonomous vehicles, Berlin Wall, call centre, Chris Urmson, cognitive dissonance, Columbian Exchange, computer age, Deng Xiaoping, don't be evil, drone strike, European colonialism, experimental subject, falling living standards, Flash crash, Frank Levy and Richard Murnane: The New Division of Labor, glass ceiling, global village, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of writing, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, job automation, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, lifelogging, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, Minecraft, Moneyball by Michael Lewis explains big data, Monkeys Reject Unequal Pay, mutually assured destruction, new economy, pattern recognition, Peter Thiel, placebo effect, Ray Kurzweil, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, stem cell, Steven Pinker, telemarketer, The Future of Employment, too big to fail, trade route, Turing machine, Turing test, ultimatum game, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, zero-sum game

In September 2013 two Oxford researchers, Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael A. Osborne, published ‘The Future of Employment’, in which they surveyed the likelihood of different professions being taken over by computer algorithms within the next twenty years. The algorithm developed by Frey and Osborne to do the calculations estimated that 47 per cent of US jobs are at high risk. For example, there is a 99 per cent probability that by 2033 human telemarketers and insurance underwriters will lose their jobs to algorithms. There is a 98 per cent probability that the same will happen to sports referees, 97 per cent that it will happen to cashiers and 96 per cent to chefs. Waiters – 94 per cent. Paralegal assistants – 94 per cent. Tour guides – 91 per cent. Bakers – 89 per cent. Bus drivers – 89 per cent. Construction labourers – 88 per cent. Veterinary assistants – 86 per cent.

pages: 559 words: 155,372

Chaos Monkeys: Obscene Fortune and Random Failure in Silicon Valley by Antonio Garcia Martinez

Airbnb, airport security, always be closing, Amazon Web Services, Burning Man, Celtic Tiger, centralized clearinghouse, cognitive dissonance, collective bargaining, corporate governance, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, death of newspapers, disruptive innovation, drone strike, El Camino Real, Elon Musk, Emanuel Derman, financial independence, global supply chain, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, hive mind, income inequality, information asymmetry, interest rate swap, intermodal, Jeff Bezos, Kickstarter, Malcom McLean invented shipping containers, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Maui Hawaii, means of production, Menlo Park, minimum viable product, MITM: man-in-the-middle, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Network effects, orbital mechanics / astrodynamics, Paul Graham, performance metric, Peter Thiel, Ponzi scheme, pre–internet, Ralph Waldo Emerson, random walk, Ruby on Rails, Sam Altman, Sand Hill Road, Scientific racism, second-price auction, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, Snapchat, social graph, social web, Socratic dialogue, source of truth, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, undersea cable, urban renewal, Y Combinator, zero-sum game, éminence grise

., the person who just shopped for a specific pair of shoes on Zappos). But either way, Facebook didn’t make the match of user and message, and at most decides secondary things like how often the ad is seen in general, or which of two ads addressed to you is seen that particular instant. In this sense, ads on Facebook are no different from phone calls or emails. We receive commercial versions of both in the form of spam and telemarketing calls. And yet, when we get a penis-enlargement email, nobody blames Google for providing Gmail, does he? Nor do you blame AT&T for the marketing call that distracted you from Game of Thrones. The only difference is that while people commonly make phone calls and write emails, few if any people address and post an ad. Like infants who haven’t learned object permanence yet, the Facebook whiners see an ad, the Facebook logo, and assume it’s all connected.

pages: 543 words: 157,991

All the Devils Are Here by Bethany McLean

Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, bank run, Black-Scholes formula, Blythe Masters, break the buck, buy and hold, call centre, collateralized debt obligation, corporate governance, corporate raider, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, diversification, Exxon Valdez, fear of failure, financial innovation, fixed income, high net worth, Home mortgage interest deduction, interest rate swap, laissez-faire capitalism, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, market bubble, market fundamentalism, Maui Hawaii, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Northern Rock, Own Your Own Home, Ponzi scheme, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, race to the bottom, risk/return, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, shareholder value, short selling, South Sea Bubble, statistical model, telemarketer, too big to fail, value at risk, zero-sum game

Greenberg did not give up, however; eventually, AIG managed to smuggle Shabani out of the country, at a cost to the company of about a million dollars. 2 Rackson sued because he claimed that he alone was never paid by Sosin. 3 ACC calls Parker a “disgruntled former employee” and notes that an arbitrator decided against his claim for wrongful dismissal. The arbitrator did not opine on Parker’s allegations of fraud. But he wrote that “there is no evidence that anything that happened to Parker in terms of his employment was connected” to his reporting of problems. 4 The case was scheduled to go to trial in October 2010, shortly before the publication of this book. 5 In response, Fannie hired a telemarketing company, which blanketed the Hill with tens of thousands of letters protesting the bill. Some of them turned out to be from dead people. When asked how much the campaign cost, Fannie said that information was “proprietary.” 6 It should be noted that although both Spitzer and the SEC would soon bring charges against Greenberg, he has never gone to trial for any alleged wrongdoing. Although five people were convicted in the Gen Re case, including an AIG executive, Greenberg was not a part of that case, even though he was an unindicted coconspirator.

pages: 568 words: 162,366

The Oil and the Glory: The Pursuit of Empire and Fortune on the Caspian Sea by Steve Levine

Berlin Wall, California gold rush, computerized trading, corporate raider, cuban missile crisis, facts on the ground, failed state, fixed income, indoor plumbing, Khyber Pass, megastructure, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, oil rush, Potemkin village, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, telemarketer, trade route

Even though the value of their stock fell with the collapse of the Mack deal, the fees generated from the Nixon-approved private contracts meant that Giffen and Huhs were still multimillionaires, and new clients continued to pour in. Paul Proehl received no commission, even though it was his encounter with the Mack executive that had led to Satra’s sudden rise. Oztemel made amends by telling him to buy a Mercedes-Benz and charge it to the company. So he did—an aqua gray sedan with black leather seats. Meticulously dressed, with a telemarketing personality, Giffen trolled for new clients wherever high-powered businessmen from America gathered. One of his favorite hunting grounds was the U.S.-USSR Trade and Economic Council (USTEC), a pioneering association formed by Nixon and Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev to faciliate business activity. There was already a mystique about Soviet trade. American blue bloods like oil scion David Rockefeller and steel magnate Cyrus Eaton were flocking to Moscow on perceived missions of peace, believing that trade would reduce the chance of superpower military confrontation, and basking in the public adulation of American businessmen seen as able to crack the Kremlin.

Analysis of Financial Time Series by Ruey S. Tsay

Asian financial crisis, asset allocation, Bayesian statistics, Black-Scholes formula, Brownian motion, business cycle, capital asset pricing model, compound rate of return, correlation coefficient, data acquisition, discrete time, frictionless, frictionless market, implied volatility, index arbitrage, Long Term Capital Management, market microstructure, martingale, p-value, pattern recognition, random walk, risk tolerance, short selling, statistical model, stochastic process, stochastic volatility, telemarketer, transaction costs, value at risk, volatility smile, Wiener process, yield curve Google Search Web FindBestStuff com Coffee Cooking Tips Recipes & Food and Drink Wine & Spirits Elder Care Babies & Toddler Pregnancy Acne Aerobics & Cardio Alternative Medicine Beauty Tips Depression Diabetes Exercise & Fitness Hair Loss Medicine Meditation Muscle Building & Bodybuilding Nutrition Nutritional Supplements Weight Loss Yoga Martial Arts Finding Happiness Inspirational Breast Cancer Mesothelioma & Cancer Fitness Equipment Nutritional Supplements Weight Loss Credit Currency Trading Debt Consolidation Debt Relief Loan Insurance Investing Mortgage Refinance Personal Finance Real Estate Taxes Stocks & Mutual Fund Structured Settlements Leases & Leasing Wealth Building Home Security Affiliate Revenue Blogging, RSS & Feeds Domain Name E-Book E-commerce Email Marketing Ezine Marketing Ezine Publishing Forums & Boards Internet Marketing Online Auction Search Engine Optimization Spam Blocking Streaming Audio & Online Music Traffic Building Video Streaming Web Design Web Development Web Hosting Web Site Promotion Broadband Internet VOIP Computer Hardware Data Recovery & Backup Internet Security Software Mobile & Cell Phone Video Conferencing Satellite TV Dating Relationships Game Casino & Gambling Humor & Entertainment Music & MP3 Photography Golf Attraction Motorcycle Fashion & Style Crafts & Hobbies Home Improvement Interior Design & Decorating Landscaping & Gardening Pets Marriage & Wedding Holiday Fishing Aviation & Flying Cruising & Sailing Outdoors Vacation Rental Copyright © 2007 FindBestStuff Advertising Branding Business Management Business Ethics Careers, Jobs & Employment Customer Service Marketing Networking Network Marketing Pay-Per-Click Advertising Presentation Public Relations Sales Sales Management Sales Telemarketing Sales Training Small Business Strategic Planning Entrepreneur Negotiation Tips Team Building Top Quick Tips Book Marketing Leadership Positive Attitude Tips Goal Setting Innovation Success Time Management Public Speaking Get Organized - Organization Book Reviews College & University Psychology Science Articles Religion Personal Technology Humanities Language Philosophy Poetry Book Reviews Medicine Coaching Creativity Dealing with Grief & Loss Motivation Spirituality Stress Management Article Writing Writing Political Copywriting Parenting Divorce Analysis of Financial Time Series Analysis of Financial Time Series Financial Econometrics RUEY S.

Manias, Panics and Crashes: A History of Financial Crises, Sixth Edition by Kindleberger, Charles P., Robert Z., Aliber

active measures, Asian financial crisis, asset-backed security, bank run, banking crisis, Basel III, Bernie Madoff, Black Swan, Bonfire of the Vanities, break the buck, Bretton Woods, British Empire, business cycle, buy and hold, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, cognitive dissonance, collapse of Lehman Brothers, collateralized debt obligation, Corn Laws, corporate governance, corporate raider, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, crony capitalism, currency peg, death of newspapers, debt deflation, Deng Xiaoping, disintermediation, diversification, diversified portfolio, edge city, financial deregulation, financial innovation, Financial Instability Hypothesis, financial repression, fixed income, floating exchange rates, George Akerlof, German hyperinflation, Honoré de Balzac, Hyman Minsky, index fund, inflation targeting, information asymmetry, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, joint-stock company, large denomination, law of one price, liquidity trap, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, market bubble, money market fund, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, moral hazard, new economy, Nick Leeson, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, Ponzi scheme, price stability, railway mania, Richard Thaler, riskless arbitrage, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, short selling, Silicon Valley, South Sea Bubble, special drawing rights, telemarketer, The Chicago School, the market place, The Myth of the Rational Market, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, transaction costs, tulip mania, very high income, Washington Consensus, Y2K, Yogi Berra, Yom Kippur War

The owners of the boiler shops had brought forth their own firms; initially they owned nearly all or all of the shares in these firms. Robert Brennan of First Jersey Securities owned and operated or was associated with a series of boiler shops; the names kept changing but the scam was always the same. Their buddies hustled increases in the prices of stocks of very small, little-known firms; once the stock prices were increasing, they used tele-marketing to sell the stocks to dentists and undertakers in small towns all over America. They managed to increase the prices of the stock day by day until most of the shares in the firms had been sold to the gullible investors who were congratulating themselves on how much money they had made. When one of these investors tried to convert the paper profits into cash, there suddenly were no buyers. For a further example of an outside destabilizing speculator who bought high and sold low, there is the story of the great Master of the Mint, Isaac Newton, the world-class scientist.

pages: 666 words: 181,495

In the Plex: How Google Thinks, Works, and Shapes Our Lives by Steven Levy

23andMe, AltaVista, Anne Wojcicki, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, autonomous vehicles, book scanning, Brewster Kahle, Burning Man, business process, clean water, cloud computing, crowdsourcing, Dean Kamen, discounted cash flows, don't be evil, Donald Knuth, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, El Camino Real, fault tolerance, Firefox, Gerard Salton, Gerard Salton, Google bus, Google Chrome, Google Earth, Googley, HyperCard, hypertext link, IBM and the Holocaust, informal economy, information retrieval, Internet Archive, Jeff Bezos, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, one-China policy, optical character recognition, PageRank, Paul Buchheit, Potemkin village, prediction markets, recommendation engine, risk tolerance, Rubik’s Cube, Sand Hill Road, Saturday Night Live, search inside the book, second-price auction, selection bias, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, Skype, slashdot, social graph, social software, social web, spectrum auction, speech recognition, statistical model, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, trade route, traveling salesman, turn-by-turn navigation, undersea cable, Vannevar Bush, web application, WikiLeaks, Y Combinator

Some of these were as simple as paying expense money (known as “red pockets,” typically fees that exceeded cab fare) to reporters attending press conferences. Google angered the local press by not paying. More complicated were fees paid to managers of Internet cafés. A substantial percentage of Chinese users accessed the net in these basement operations, smoky parlors that looked like a cross between a telemarketing boiler room and a video poker casino, with hundreds of terminals active at any hour. The large companies that franchised these establishments preloaded the computers with their chosen software, and Google and Baidu paid for the privilege of being the default search engine. But often the managers of individual cafés would take money under the table to replace one search engine with another. Google generally avoided such arrangements.

pages: 721 words: 197,134

Data Mining: Concepts, Models, Methods, and Algorithms by Mehmed Kantardzić

Albert Einstein, bioinformatics, business cycle, business intelligence, business process, butter production in bangladesh, combinatorial explosion, computer vision, conceptual framework, correlation coefficient, correlation does not imply causation, data acquisition, discrete time, El Camino Real, fault tolerance, finite state, Gini coefficient, information retrieval, Internet Archive, inventory management, iterative process, knowledge worker, linked data, loose coupling, Menlo Park, natural language processing, Netflix Prize, NP-complete, PageRank, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, phenotype, random walk, RFID, semantic web, speech recognition, statistical model, Telecommunications Act of 1996, telemarketer, text mining, traveling salesman, web application

The company has used data mining to compare the profiles of two sets of targeted customers—those who bought new services and those who did not. This has led the company to make some changes in its messages to customers, which, in turn, has led to a 30% increase in targeted customers signing up for new services Worldcom Worldcom is another company that has found great value in data mining. By mining databases of its customer-service and telemarketing data, Worldcom has discovered new ways to sell voice and data services. For example, it has found that people who buy two or more services were likely to be relatively loyal customers. It also found that people were willing to buy packages of products such as long-distance, cellular-phone, Internet, and other services. Consequently, Worldcom started to offer more such packages. BBC TV TV-program schedulers would like to know the likely audience for a proposed program and the best time to show it.

The Simple Living Guide by Janet Luhrs

air freight, Albert Einstein, car-free, cognitive dissonance, Community Supported Agriculture, compound rate of return, financial independence, follow your passion, Golden Gate Park, job satisfaction, late fees, money market fund, music of the spheres, passive income, Ralph Waldo Emerson, risk tolerance, telemarketer, the rule of 72, urban decay, urban renewal, Whole Earth Review

It would be one thing if the company earmarked a percentage of its profits to be used to donate materials to schools; it is quite another to encourage consumption of its product as a way to give books to schools. A motivational book and tape company sent around a flyer to schools about self-esteem. Parents could send away for a free booklet on building self-esteem. I thought, “Why not,” and sent for it. After receiving the booklet—what do you know—I got an evening call from a company telemarketer wanting to set up a home visit with me to go over the “wonderful” line of products this company could offer me that would help build my child’s self-esteem. I said no thanks and was angry that my children were being used as conduits for aggressive sales tactics. Pay attention to what is going on at your children’s school. Corporations are now writing lesson plans that are used to teach kids in school.

pages: 788 words: 223,004

Merchants of Truth: The Business of News and the Fight for Facts by Jill Abramson

23andMe, 4chan, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Alexander Shulgin, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, barriers to entry, Bernie Madoff, Bernie Sanders, Charles Lindbergh, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, cloud computing, commoditize, corporate governance, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, death of newspapers, digital twin, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, East Village, Edward Snowden, Ferguson, Missouri, Filter Bubble, future of journalism, glass ceiling, Google Glasses, haute couture, hive mind, income inequality, information asymmetry, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, Joseph Schumpeter, Khyber Pass, late capitalism, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Nate Silver, new economy, obamacare, Occupy movement, performance metric, Peter Thiel, phenotype, pre–internet, race to the bottom, recommendation engine, Robert Mercer, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, self-driving car, sentiment analysis, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, skunkworks, Snapchat, social intelligence, social web, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, technoutopianism, telemarketer, the scientific method, The Wisdom of Crowds, Tim Cook: Apple, too big to fail, WikiLeaks

The campaign targeted Floridians whose profiles identified them, for example, as “math teacher” or affiliated with a PTA, and on top of that, users whose interests included, for instance, “I love my daughter.” All the while Facebook was strengthening its persuasion machine by feeding it information about users’ offline lives. Around 2012 the company set out to buy up reams of data from outside firms, the type that collected and sold phone numbers to telemarketers. Its database swelled with records of users’ income levels, credit ratings and purchase histories, places of residence, educational attainment, and more. All could easily be matched to each user’s already data-rich Facebook profile and activity history. That bundle gave advertisers an unprecedented, 360-degree comprehension of whom to target and how to win them over. This was borderline omniscience, and it was now at the fingertips of not only retailers but also media companies aiming to build audiences, and, of course, politicians.

Applied Cryptography: Protocols, Algorithms, and Source Code in C by Bruce Schneier

active measures, cellular automata, Claude Shannon: information theory, complexity theory, dark matter, Donald Davies, Donald Knuth, dumpster diving, Exxon Valdez, fault tolerance, finite state, invisible hand, John von Neumann, knapsack problem, MITM: man-in-the-middle, NP-complete, P = NP, packet switching, RAND corporation, RFC: Request For Comment, software patent, telemarketer, traveling salesman, Turing machine, web of trust, Zimmermann PGP Click on your interest section for more information : Acne ● Advertising ● Aerobics & Cardio ● Affiliate Revenue ● Alternative Medicine ● Attraction ● Online Auction ● Streaming Audio & Online Music ● Aviation & Flying ● Babies & Toddler ● Beauty ● Blogging, RSS & Feeds ● Book Marketing ● Book Reviews ● Branding ● Breast Cancer ● Broadband Internet ● Muscle Building & Bodybuilding ● Careers, Jobs & Employment ● Casino & Gambling ● Coaching ● Coffee ● College & University ● Cooking Tips ● Copywriting ● Crafts & Hobbies ● Creativity ● Credit ● Cruising & Sailing ● Currency Trading ● Customer Service ● Data Recovery & Computer Backup ● Dating ● Debt Consolidation ● Debt Relief ● Depression ● Diabetes ● Divorce ● Domain Name ● E-Book ● E-commerce ● Elder Care ● Email Marketing ● Entrepreneur ● Ethics ● Exercise & Fitness ● Ezine Marketing ● Ezine Publishing ● Fashion & Style ● Fishing ● Fitness Equipment ● Forums ● Game ● Goal Setting ● Golf ● Dealing with Grief & Loss ● Hair Loss ● Finding Happiness ● Computer Hardware ● Holiday ● Home Improvement ● Home Security ● Humanities ● Humor & Entertainment ● Innovation ● Inspirational ● Insurance ● Interior Design & Decorating ● Internet Marketing ● Investing ● Landscaping & Gardening ● Language ● Leadership ● Leases & Leasing ● Loan ● Mesothelioma & Asbestos Cancer ● Business Management ● Marketing ● Marriage & Wedding ● Martial Arts ● Medicine ● Meditation ● Mobile & Cell Phone ● Mortgage Refinance ● Motivation ● Motorcycle ● Music & MP3 ● Negotiation ● Network Marketing ● Networking ● Nutrition ● Get Organized - Organization ● Outdoors ● Parenting ● Personal Finance ● Personal Technology ● Pet ● Philosophy ● Photography ● Poetry ● Political ● Positive Attitude Tips ● Pay-Per-Click Advertising ● Public Relations ● Pregnancy ● Presentation ● Psychology ● Public Speaking ● Real Estate ● Recipes & Food and Drink ● Relationship ● Religion ● Sales ● Sales Management ● Sales Telemarketing ● Sales Training ● Satellite TV ● Science Articles ● Internet Security ● Search Engine Optimization (SEO) ● Sexuality ● Web Site Promotion ● Small Business ● Software ● Spam Blocking ● Spirituality ● Stocks & Mutual Fund ● Strategic Planning ● Stress Management ● Structured Settlements ● Success ● Nutritional Supplements ● Tax ● Team Building ● Time Management ● Top Quick Tips ● Traffic Building ● Vacation Rental ● Video Conferencing ● Video Streaming ● VOIP ● Wealth Building ● Web Design ● Web Development ● Web Hosting ● Weight Loss ● Wine & Spirits ● Writing ● Article Writing ● Yoga ● *More than 150,000 articles in the search database *Learn how almost everything works To access the contents, click the chapter and section titles.

pages: 1,336 words: 415,037

The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life by Alice Schroeder

affirmative action, Albert Einstein, anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, barriers to entry, Bob Noyce, Bonfire of the Vanities, Brownian motion, capital asset pricing model, card file, centralized clearinghouse, Charles Lindbergh, collateralized debt obligation, computerized trading, corporate governance, corporate raider, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, desegregation, Donald Trump, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, Everybody Ought to Be Rich, global village, Golden Gate Park, Haight Ashbury, haute cuisine, Honoré de Balzac, If something cannot go on forever, it will stop - Herbert Stein's Law, In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, index fund, indoor plumbing, intangible asset, interest rate swap, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, John Meriwether, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Long Term Capital Management, Louis Bachelier, margin call, market bubble, Marshall McLuhan, medical malpractice, merger arbitrage, Mikhail Gorbachev, money market fund, moral hazard, NetJets, new economy, New Journalism, North Sea oil, paper trading, passive investing, Paul Samuelson,, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, Ralph Nader, random walk, Ronald Reagan, Scientific racism, shareholder value, short selling, side project, Silicon Valley, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, telemarketer, The Predators' Ball, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, too big to fail, transcontinental railway, Upton Sinclair, War on Poverty, Works Progress Administration, Y2K, yellow journalism, zero-coupon bond

He gave speeches; he wrote articles; he wrote editorials; he gathered people at parties and gave little lessons; he testified in lawsuits; he appeared in television documentaries and did television interviews and took journalists along with him on trips; he went around to colleges and taught classes; he got college students to come and visit him; he gave lessons at the openings of furniture stores, the inauguration of insurance telemarketing centers, and dinners for would-be customers of NetJets; he gave locker-room talks to football players; he spoke at lunches with Congressmen; he educated newspaper folk in editorial board meetings; he gave lessons to his own board of directors; and, above all, he put on the teacher’s robes in his letters to and meetings with his shareholders. Berkshire Hathaway was his “Sistine Chapel”—not just a work of art, but an illustrated text of his beliefs, which was why Munger referred to it as Buffett’s “didactic enterprise.”

Engineering Security by Peter Gutmann

active measures, algorithmic trading, Amazon Web Services, Asperger Syndrome, bank run, barriers to entry, bitcoin, Brian Krebs, business process, call centre, card file, cloud computing, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, combinatorial explosion, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Debian, domain-specific language, Donald Davies, Donald Knuth, double helix,, endowment effect, fault tolerance, Firefox, fundamental attribution error, George Akerlof, glass ceiling, GnuPG, Google Chrome, iterative process, Jacob Appelbaum, Jane Jacobs, Jeff Bezos, John Conway, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Kickstarter, lake wobegon effect, Laplace demon, linear programming, litecoin, load shedding, MITM: man-in-the-middle, Network effects, Parkinson's law, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, Pierre-Simon Laplace, place-making, post-materialism, QR code, race to the bottom, random walk, recommendation engine, RFID, risk tolerance, Robert Metcalfe, Ruby on Rails, Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, Satoshi Nakamoto, security theater, semantic web, Skype, slashdot, smart meter, social intelligence, speech recognition, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stuxnet, telemarketer, text mining, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Market for Lemons, the payments system, Therac-25, too big to fail, Turing complete, Turing machine, Turing test, web application, web of trust, x509 certificate, Y2K, zero day, Zimmermann PGP

To help you out, here’s one possible list of reasons. Not everyone has a cell phone. Cellular coverage doesn’t reach everywhere. There’s no guarantee of timely delivery for text messages. The text might get sent to the wrong number. Mobile phones can be cloned. In some countries users have to pay for each SMS sent or received. Users have to pay forward roaming charges if they’re overseas. Your bank could on-sell your cell phone number to telemarketers. Mobile phones aren’t tamper-resistant. Visually impaired users can’t do SMS. Businesses will have to buy cell phones for employees who currently don’t own one and are in charge of business bank accounts. Some cellular networks send SMS’ unencrypted. This authorisation mechanism doesn’t work with shared bank accounts. Your bank will abuse their access to your cell phone to send you SMS spam.

pages: 2,045 words: 566,714

J.K. Lasser's Your Income Tax by J K Lasser Institute

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, airline deregulation, asset allocation, business cycle, collective bargaining, distributed generation, employer provided health coverage, estate planning, Home mortgage interest deduction, intangible asset, medical malpractice, medical residency, money market fund, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, passive income, Ponzi scheme, profit motive, rent control, Right to Buy, telemarketer, transaction costs, urban renewal, zero-coupon bond

What apparently won the decision for the couple was evidence that (1) the husband did not have access to a computer at the university, and (2) the state office in which the wife worked did not have funds to buy a computer. The court held that the use of the computer was necessary for them to properly do their jobs, and as the purchase of a computer spared their employers from having to provide them with computers, the purchase was for the employers’ convenience. In a later case, a telemarketing sales manager was allowed a first-year expensing deduction for a home computer and printer used to prepare reports. The key to winning the deduction was her supervisor’s testimony that as a mid-level manager, she could not enter the office after regular hours to use a company computer, and that she was able to keep up with the volume of sales reports she was required to submit by using her home computer and accessing information via modem

pages: 1,845 words: 567,850

J.K. Lasser's Your Income Tax 2014 by J. K. Lasser

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, airline deregulation, asset allocation, business cycle, collective bargaining, distributed generation, employer provided health coverage, estate planning, Home mortgage interest deduction, intangible asset, medical malpractice, medical residency, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, obamacare, passive income, Ponzi scheme, profit motive, rent control, Right to Buy, telemarketer, transaction costs, urban renewal, zero-coupon bond

What apparently won the decision for the couple was evidence that (1) the husband did not have access to a computer at the university, and (2) the state office in which the wife worked did not have funds to buy a computer. The court held that the use of the computer was necessary for them to properly do their jobs, and as the purchase of a computer spared their employers from having to provide them with computers, the purchase was for the employers’ convenience. In a later case, a telemarketing sales manager was allowed a first-year expensing deduction for a home computer and printer used to prepare reports. The key to winning the deduction was her supervisor’s testimony that as a mid-level manager, she could not enter the office after regular hours to use a company computer, and that she was able to keep up with the volume of sales reports she was required to submit by using her home computer and accessing information via modem