Tuesday, November 29, 2005

US Do Not Call Registry now also open for telemarketing firms

Google is on the warpath once again. This time it's trying to gain a foothold in telemarketing.

The new baby is called Click-to-Call, of course it's a test (just about every Google service is), and it works by putting an icon next to search results. The user can click the icon and enter his phone number, after which Google connects you, free of charge of course, to the advertiser.

This sounds like a great innovation in a country where consumers apparently are so fed up with telemarketing calls that a staggering 120 million of them signed up to the National Do Not Call Registry. If people don't want to be called, why not have them call you themselves?

Of course eBay, who just overpaid $3bn for internet telephony startup Skype in order to have them provide exactly the same service for its auctioneers, won't be a happy camper now. But it's yet another step in the direction of handing the initiative to consumers in advertising and marketing relationships, following TiVo's build-your-own-commercial-break project.

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