Pledge week no longer enough for WGBH

Last night, Kathy Cahill reports, some guy in his 20s knocked on her door in Roslindale and said he was soliciting donations for WGBH. WGBH? "Fraudulent?" she asked.

"We really are coming to your door!" WGBH enthuses.

The station has joined the ranks of politicians, cable companies and Jehovah's Witnesses and unleashed a brigade of door-to-door solicitors, "reminding our neighbors of the important part they play in keeping public radio and public television available to everyone in New England."

They've even posted photos and ID numbers of the canvassers that you can print out and tape to your side of the door for you to check when somebody comes knocking.



    Free tagging: 



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    Yet another reason why I am in NO hurry to get the doorbell on my condo building fixed. There's buttons but they no longer work. Poor JW's stand there and press the button over and over again and no one ever comes.

    Oh no!

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    Someone might come to your door and TALK TO YOU! What is this world coming to? Where are the police? There out to be a law!

    My Condo

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    Most of my friends know to CALL before. Delivery people know to CALL before.

    Sorry I don't like un-announced people at my door.

    And where I live, we get so many people ringing our door for various reasons (mostly JW's who want to know if I've found Jesus)... Typically, if someone is knocking, I'm 99% sure its no one I want to speak with, hence the "call" thing when friends and delivery people come.

    Way to be pithy

    But seriously-- what world do you live in where an unexpected visitor knocking on your door is a welcome thing? When has this situation EVER been one that had a pleasant outcome?

    Fact is, Ed McMahon ain't showing up at your door with a check from Publisher's Clearing House. If it's something you want (delivery, package, friend) then 99% of the time it's something you're expecting. The unexpected knock/ring is almost always some miserable interaction, and I challenge the Uhub community to come up with a reasonable exception to that rule I just made up.

    Point given

    Agreed, but I think you could expect that your situation is not the norm in an urban environment.

    But seriously-- what world do

    But seriously-- what world do you live in where an unexpected visitor knocking on your door is a welcome thing? When has this situation EVER been one that had a pleasant outcome?

    I know, right? Other people... YUCK!

    Sarcasm will get you everywhere

    Joking aside, the top five unexpected visitors that pop into my head are:

    1) Religiously-affiliated people wanting to sell me on their version of the Invisible Sky-Friend;
    2) Scam artists trying to switch my cable/phone/electric/etc company to their wonderful, never-heard-of-before company;
    3) People fundraising for legitimate charities that I might be interested in but I never give money to a stranger at my door;
    4) People "fundraising" for very illegitimate charities, ones like the age-old magazine subscription "contest" that the young man or woman is trying to win for a trip to Disney but are almost always scams being played on them. Seriously, folks-- if you think these kids really have a trip or whatever the prize is waiting for them, I've got a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you;
    5) Volunteer canvassers who want to sell me on their version of the Best Candidate For Reals.

    I don't think my list is all that different from most other people's experiences. But yes, it's funny to say that because I don't like to interact with THESE people that I dislike interacting with ALL people.

    I just like the odds to be in my favor, that all, and if I answer my door to an unexpected guest the odds are that it'll be one of the above.


    That's pretty much a spot-on list of the unexpected people who ring my doorbell, too. I pretty much don't answer the door unless I'm expecting either a visitor or a delivery.

    Girl Scout cookies

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    I generally agree, but I'm not ready to lock myself in the bunker yet. Here are some exceptions:

    Girl Scout cookies
    New neighbors
    Welcoming neighbors you haven't met yet

    This makes me...

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    ...whatever the opposite of wanting to donate is.

    Also I assume they'll be taking credit card information--after all the breaches lately who honestly wants to give that out to a stranger with a pad of paper?

    It's like those guerrilla

    It's like those guerrilla solicitations where a pair of money-takers tries to corner you on the sidewalk to tell you about the cause for which they're raising money. As I told one of them, it's a personal policy to never donate money in that way. If I want to support their cause, I'll make a donation on my own time, from my own computer, so that I know the funds are going to the correct destination. With those in-person solicitations, you just have no idea if they're legit.

    I also give scammers about a day to figure out how to take advantage of this.

    they came to my door as well

    I thought it was some kind of scam but the person who showed up at my house is listed on WGBH's web page, so I guess it was legit. Still, it's damn annoying.

    They should send Sherlock

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    since he'd just barge right in, look around your house, and decide how much money you can afford to give WGBH all in one glance- and then he'd take it as you stood there confusedly listening to his explanation.

    Sherlock is above the law.

    It's like a scammer paradise

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    They post photos and ID number online, so a scammer only has to choose the person who looks most like them; Photoshop a realistic looking ID using the photo and number, laminate it, and free money.

    As in, the one month they are

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    As in, the one month they are running pledge drives all damn day long, they're out heckling you at their door.

    There's very little in the season where they aren't utterly insufferable with the whole thing. And don't get me going on how they edit UK shows.


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    Mrs. Slocombe saying pussy isn't edited. Oh, never mind.

    You know why they do that, right?

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    I didn't know this about PBS Stations and their 'beg-a-thon-we'll-give-you-a-crappy-promo-item-that-costs-less-than-a-buck" until a few years ago

    If PBS gives you a gift for your donation, you CANNOT write the full amount off your taxes. You have to deduct the gift costs, then claim the rest.

    Its kinda shady if you ask me... cuz 99% of the time, I don't want anything for donating (not that I do often), but they send it anyways...

    I don't see what PBS gets my

    I don't see what PBS gets my making sure you can't deduct your donation 100%. Have you ever tried asking them to leave the thank-you gift off of your acknowledgement?

    You could also send them a check outside of the pledge season (but since it seems to be pledge week 51 weeks out of the year, I'm not sure how well this idea will work.)

    Given the number of people who like to swill their coffee in a WGBH mug, or tote their whatever in a logo totebag, I'm not sure how unpopular those gifts really are. In fact, I think they're a sort-of status symbol, and the scruffier the better (Oh, this? I must have gotten this for donating my first year here in 1982.)

    They never bleep the "tw*t" on Scott & Bailey

    There's very little in the season where they aren't utterly insufferable with the whole thing. And don't get me going on how they edit UK shows.

    And that isn't an "I" that's missing.

    Might be a good drinking game.

    Save the Children?

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    I had someone POUNDING on my door Tuesday night after they had already rung the bell. I was caught off guard--I was in the middle of a work out so was in shorts and a tshirt--but the pounding was insistent. I really thought it was the police because it was so demanding. Turns out, it was a pleasant but persistent volunteer from 'Save the Children'.

    I vowed to myself to not open the door when someone unexpected drops by. It was 8pm and I live alone. I hate being that person but it was somehow unsettling. I keep wondering if it was a scam or someone casing the house. Ugh, I don't like that I've turned into this person but there are so many stories on here about home invasions and everything else.

    Hare Krishna Time!

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    I love to answer the door with a book in my hand and ask them if they ever heard of the Hare Krishna's. I then try to get a donation for the book and invite them to the free dinner at the "Church" so they can get "indoctrinated".

    Usually they leave without ever trying to solicit anything from me.


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    I ask them if they want to have sex. When they become indignant, I say, "What are you so upset about? You solicited me first."

    Nah, not really. Might be worth a try, though. Either you get rid of them or you get sex. Win-Win.



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    If you are motivated enough to go to their website to retrieve photos, etc. of their canvassers ahead of time, then presumably you are probably also motivated enough to pledge online anyway. (Checking after the fact would be different.)


    and what about the infomercials?

    They're selling CDs and DVDs to credulous people by pretending to be PBS "health" shows - none of them is any better than the Miracle Mop special.

    They have to be making money hand over fist for those things.


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    I have disconnected doorbell and have a cardboard box outside my front door which says "All Political Flyers Here".

    Friends know to call me first before coming over..

    I am going to register as a Libertarian next, no phone calls or junk mail then

    Boston has it's share of elections over the pass year.


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    Won't help. I'm a past State Chair of the party, so I know. All it will accomplish, if you actually believe in the tenets, is to get you pissed off when presented with political polling via telephone that only recognizes Democrats and Republicans. They especially want to know for whom an "independent" will vote. Same goes for the flyers and other mail. You will be targeted (erroneously) as a voter unattached to a candidate and thus prime for their advertising.