While merchants found telephone soliciting to be an effective sales technique, many of the targets of their sales calls were not quite as impressed with the innovation.
Telephony, February 20, 1909, page 227:
Housekeeper Objects to Telephone Advertising.
The Rochester N. Y., Union and Advertiser prints the following, which may well serve as a suggestion to managers who are inclined to encourage use of the telephone for all conceivable purposes:
"My telephone is far more of a nuisance to me than it is a convenience," said a housekeeper yesterday, "and I think I will have it removed, if I am called up as much in the future as I have been during the past week by theater agents, and business firms, who abuse the telephone privilege, using it as a means of advertising. My hands were busy moulding bread yesterday morning, when I heard the bell ring, and upon responding was told by a woman just gone into business in a Main street building, that she had a fine line of curtains, and other hangings, which she would like me to see. Shortly afterwards an employee of a firm making extracts, solicited my patronage in the same way, and though I told him that I did not wish to be annoyed again, by being called to the telephone to hear of the extracts, the afternoon brought another call from the same firm. Last week a number of my friends and I heard over the telephone of a Shakespearian actor who was to fill a long engagement here, and we were asked by an attache of the theater to please get our seats early, as there would undoubtedly be a rush for tickets. These are samples of a telephone annoyance that I would like to be freed from."