Card Services

September 5, 2007

For a while, I received phone calls almost daily regarding my credit card balances. Since I have not used a credit card in close to twenty years, I selected the remove me from your calling list option. I selected that option at least five times before deciding it did not work. The next call, I selected the speak with a representative option to let them know that function was not working and to ask this person to remove my name from the calling list.


Despite the representative’s apology and promise to remove my name from the system, the calls continued. I lost patience. For a while, I asked pertinent questions. How does your business fit in the non-profit or political categories that legitimize solicitation calls? Where did you get my name?


After a number of representatives tripped over their tongues trying unsuccessfully to answer those questions, and none of them managed to get my name off the list, I switched to questions that would assist me should I receive answers. What is the name of your company? What is your mailing address? To whom should I address my letter? May I have a number to call you back?


Several months ago, I spoke with the most condescending representative. When he said I had not responded to the letter his company had sent me, in a tone that hinted that I should be grateful they had not arrested me for such an infraction, I asked on what date he had sent that letter, and to which address he had sent it. He huffed and told me not “to be ridiculous.”


My reaction to a condescending huffer is anything but ladylike. I want to leave this article accessible to those who choose not to read words that offend them (sorry about those two most offensive words in the title), so I will do this in code.


Me: Look, dumba**, don’t huff at me for asking you to qualify your statement.”


Card Service Rep: Don’t use that language with me.


Me: You invaded my home. Do not tell me how to talk in my home.


CSR: You ignorant b**ch. I am recording this.


Me: Good. I don’t say anything I don’t mean, and you apparently can’t answer any of my questions. Play this for your boss.


CRS: You sound like you’re from the south. You probably f**k ni**ers.


I was not able to find a mailing address for this company but did identify the city from which the call had originated. I sent a letter to the Chamber of Commerce in that city, but heard nothing from them. I contacted my phone company, who referred me to the local police.


This morning, I answered my phone to the familiar message: We are calling about your credit card. It is urgent we speak with you immediately. Knowing the remove me option was worthless and hanging up would guarantee more calls, I chose the connect now option.


I connected with Paul, and asked for the name of the company.


Paul: Card Services. (He sounded proud of that generic name.)


Me: Where is your company located?


Paul: Nationwide. Do you have over $3,000 in credit card debt?


Me: Nationwide? Do you have a mailing address?


Paul: I will need more information before I can speak with you. You did not respond to the letter we sent you.


Me: I didn’t receive your letter. When did you send it?


Paul: 60 days ago.


Me: It should be here by now. Where did you send it?


Paul: Silly sl*t, you’re (I’m sure he would spell that your) caught up on small details.


Me: Thank you. I am recording this call. You really expect me to give personal information to a stranger on the phone who will not give me any information about his company?


Paul: Stupid c*nt.


Me: F*ck you, Paul.


Before anyone tells me I “should” use caller ID and not answer these calls, I warn you that I consider that blaming the victim, along with:


*She deserved to be raped because of what she was wearing

*He deserved to be robbed if he left his door unlocked

*Anyone who leaves the house after dark is just asking for trouble

The call originated from this number: (410) 774-8182


The name of the company: Card Services


I found websites for CardService International and CardServices Australia but cannot verify that the calls came from either. CardService International lists this ad on their website: CSI is looking for independent sales people who are passionate about helping businesses grow.


After receiving a barrage of similar calls from Dish (they can’t understand why I am not interested when they won’t name the 120 channels they promise, and call me “stupid” for asking or hang up on me for asking, but they don’t make sexual or racial comments), I discovered that Dish allows anyone to ‘sell’ their service and takes no responsibility for the number of reps in an area, the number of calls they make, or how rude they might be. I suspect the same is happening with the Card Services company.


I know there are much bigger problems in this world, but the arrogance and insult of companies that have stepped this far outside the boundaries of common decency offend me to a level I cannot ignore. I consider the actions of the companies and the willingness of our society to accept these practices to be serious societal problems.