Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Devil's innovations

My friend and a leading financial planner Gaurav Mashruwala loves to share a joke.
Once a news reporter interviewed the Devil. After a long interview, the reporter finally asked, “What is that one thing you did that makes you proud?” The Devil tried to circumvent the question and started giving round about answers, but such questions in superlatives (best, biggest, largest, etc.) are the most favourite among the reporters. He insisted and finally the Devil replied, “The nastiest thing that I ever created is the credit card. It has the potential to ruin many families. Before the inevitable comes, they feel happy using it.”
That’s the innovation called credit cards.
Gaurav’s joke ends here. So let’s start ours.
The news channel carried a story about the Devil’s interview. There were public debates about the interview and the merits and demerits of credit cards. Someone brought out a very interesting point. They said, the Devil did not think much as those sinners who do not have credit cards are spared of the punishment.
The Devil was requested to come for another interview. He obliged. In fact, he could not resist the temptation of the publicity that television gave him.
After a few questions, the interviewer came to the point and asked the Devil (referring to the credit card answer) that the same spared those sinners who do not have a credit card. That way, it fails the test to qualify as your best idea. What do you have in such a case? The Devil’s answer was very simple, “Ever heard of tele-calling? That is for those who do not have a credit card yet.”
Well, the amount of outbound calls are done by the tele-callers is increasing by the day. Time has come for the regulators to introduce “Please call” registry instead of “Do not call” registry as the same does not work. It also involves painful steps in registration, a wait period of 45 days (I fail to understand why that should take 45 days. What do the phone companies do in the wait period? Or is it the proverbial “last chance” for the tele-marketers?). If you get a call after the wait period is over, lodging a complaint is another ordeal. You, the harassed, need to remember the steps to lodge a complaint. How some people can make life more and more difficult – is a puzzle.
The icing on the cake is the attitude of the tele-marketers. The caller thinks that he or she is doing a huge favour to you by selecting to call you. God save us from such Devilish innovations.