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Lying is Good for the Soul
by Gary Kolojay aka James Doe    Thomas Paine's Corner
Entered into the database on Monday, September 11th, 2006 @ 14:17:09 MST


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In this age of computers and massive databases it’s getting more and more difficult to have “privacy”

Every question you answer in writing, every verbal statement given to an interviewer / telemarketer is being somewhere recorded for future benefit (to the marketer of course not to you).

Fear not ! Help is on the way. I’d like to suggest some techniques which should go a long way to restoring your privacy at the expense of confounding the market masters and that is to

LIE !!!!

Yes Lie ! big lies ! small lies, all lies are good in the war against consumer databases !

When you buy a new product, go ahead and send in the warranty card. You know, those little post card sized things that ask your name, sex, marital status, hobbies, income I.Q., age, number of children and other assorted facts that are simply none of their business.

Here are some of my favorite techniques, which I freely give you, gentle reader, permission to copy.

I change my age regularly. I can be anywhere from 17 to 94. Net effect – I don’t receive ANY age-targeted junk mail.

Of course, that could be the result of keeping my reported income level under $17,000 per year. (This one is NOT negotiable however; I always misreport income for marketer’s databases).

I even periodically change my sex on various documents just to spice up their data pool.

Sometime I may claim to have 2 to 10 people living in my household as well including perhaps some with criminal backgrounds, various infirmities, or other restrictions that may dissuade a company from keeping me as their “prize data possession”.

I use various spellings of my name for cannon fodder in my personal war. Middle initials change with the seasons or my moods. Apartment numbers change with some regularity even tho I live in one story house.

An accountant of my acquaintance takes things a little further. He never uses credit cards or electronic toll passes, in fact, he doesn’t even have a car, which mystifies me how he manages to get around so well. (Something about an ex-wife I think).

In my state it is no longer required to put your social security number on your DL. I may have been the first to take advantage of this.

If asked for my hobbies, I include sewing and knitting, fly fishing, marathon running, and juggling. I assure you that none of these are true.

I use phone cards periodically, never use my home phone to call out, (my cell phone with unlimited minutes is supplied by my company).

Alas I have made some decisions TO get my name on certain lists, which I will not divulge here, for purely political purposes. And speaking of which, I get mail from both the Republican and Democratic parties. Some things are inescapable.

I once spent 20 minutes with a telemarketer during some evening down time and had and interesting battle in divulging as little as possible while still keeping the young man on the line trying to sell me something. He tried to find out if I was married, had any kids, whether or not I was familiar with the Wisconsin Dells as a vacation spot, my income, etc.. I enjoyed our rapport and when I realized it was time to move on proceeded to grade him on his technique (and I refused his kind offer to buy vacation time in the Dells).

I have from time to time used friend’s credit card to purchase items I didn’t necessarily want identified with me. OF course using this technique requires having very good friends or friends with a sense of humor and wives who are clueless..

Oh! For the truly paranoid … don’t lick envelopes shut, use water!


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