A Blind Call

This idea is certainly brilliant, I just can’t work out if it has any practical value whatsoever.

It starts off with the premise that people often forget to lock their phones and make useless calls to other people. The caller doesn’t know it’s happening and the recipient is left hearing muffled sounds as a mobile moves around the caller’s handbag or pocket and hangs up. Worse is when it goes to the recipient’s voice mail and the call lasts 30 seconds or so, contributing nicely to your friendly operator’s revenues.

So, a charity in Holland got the idea that if these useless calls could be turned into something positive, the world would be a better place and everyone would benefit. That’s where the brilliant thinking came in.

Their solution is to get people to add “A blind call” (it’s a charity for the blind) as an entry into the mobile’s address book. Which means that unless you know someone called Aardvark, A Blind Call is probably number one in your address book. That’s because the theory is that it’s the first person in the address book that gets all these calls.

From then on, if you inadvertently hit that button, your call gets routed to the charity, which gets a cut of the revenue, automatically disconnects after 30 seconds and the most the caller gets charged is Euro 0.75.

I’ve certainly been on the receiving end of some of these calls – and in fairness, probably made a few myself – but I was under the impression that the most frequent use case was that it’s the last number redial that gets activated. Which is why I wonder about the practicality.

But then “Russell” is not high up in most people’s address books and I wouldn’t be the victim very often, would I? So if there are any Abigails, Aarons or Aardvarks reading – does this happen to you very often?

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