Origin of telemarketingtele- (sense ) + marketing
telemarketing - Computer Definition
The use of the telephone to solicit prospective customers to sell products or services. Telemarketing dates at least to the 1970s, when AT&T promoted long distance telemarketing under the name Phone Power to promote WATS service. Under pressure from consumers and consumer groups, the United States Congress passed the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) in 1991. The TCPA specifically mentions automatic telephone dialing systems, or auto dialers, and prerecorded messages, and includes substantial penalties for telemarketers found guilty of violating the privacy of residential, fax, and certain other categories of users. In 2003, the FCC and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) established the National Do-Not-Call Registry, which allows residential landline customers to opt out of unsolicited telemarketing calls. The Do-Not-Call Registry was extended to cellular phones in late 2004. Telemarketers must honor the opt-out, although there are exceptions for political campaigns and nonprofit organizations. The penalties for violations are substantial. See also cellular and landline.
Selling over the telephone.