Misunderstandings are the worst. If you’ve ever seen the film Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, it includes a huge misunderstanding. Spoiler alert: Batman and Superman square off in an epic battle that spans city streets, rooftops, and warehouses. The two superheroes were put at odds by an evil plan hatched by Lex Luther. For seven minutes Superman attempts to clue in Batman to the details of Luther’s plot while the Caped Crusader attains the upper hand and nearly kills the Man of Steel. Once Supes is finally able to get the message across (that his mother is in danger), Batman learns it was all a misunderstanding the whole time. Oops!

Long story short, if Batman would have paused for a moment to listen, that entire fight — albeit a great big budget action set piece — wouldn’t have been necessary, and millions of dollars in damage to public property would have been avoided.

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In other words, not all robocalls are bad. Technically, a robocall is an automatically dialed call, regardless of if they leave a message or not. We often think of robocalls in their worst form: scams. That’s a reasonable assumption because most are scams (39 percent). The third-most common robocalls are telemarketing messages (23 percent). This means that more often than not, robocall are a nuisance. Considering 3.8 billion robocalls were placed in November 2020, approximately 2.4 billion were either a scam or telemarketing. So of course most consider the robocall more than just a nuisance, but as an evil supervillain.

There is, however, another side to this coin.

The second-most common robocalls are alerts and reminders (26 percent). Maybe you preordered the hottest Christmas gift of the year, and the retailer is giving you an automated heads-up to let you know it’s about to arrive. Perhaps there’s an important message your child’s school district needs to push out fast. Or it could be that your political party wants to let you know an election is coming up and they are making sure you’re voting and fully informed about their platform and candidates.

The last category of robocall is payment reminders (13 percent). Perhaps a billing company gives you a ring when your payment is nearly due. Obviously, this can be a mixed bag. Sure, you may not really want to hear that it’s time to pay the piper, but let’s be honest, sometimes we need a little nudge to fulfill our obligation. For credit-challenged consumers, payment reminders are often a part of the deal in getting a high-risk loan. Lenders have to do what they have to do stay in business and consumers under unfortunate conditions need to do what they have to do to survive. For those attempting to rebuild their credit in earnest, a payment reminder might very well be appreciated. Some collectors are more aggressive than others, so let’s call this one a draw.

In other words, while a robocall is usually a bad thing, it can actually sometimes be a good thing. The term “robocall” simply refers to the sentience (or lack thereof) of the caller.

Not All Spam Comes From Evil Robots

A spam call on the other hand refers to the intent of the call. It might be a scam to defraud you out of your money or to gain access to your personal information. It could be a telemarketing pitch, most of the time a wild shot in the dark to see if you’ll buy some random product you never asked for. Or, it might be an overzealous collector trying to extract payment in a threatening way. The point is, not all spam calls are robocalls; there could very well be a human on the other end of the line who is making your life miserable. Conversely, not all robocalls are spam. Wittingly or unwittingly, sometimes we sign up for alerts and reminders that we want that may come from a living, breathing person or an automated machine.

Don’t misunderstand us, our intent isn’t to clear the good name of robocalling. The numbers tell us that more often than not, robocalls are bad.

The point is, robocalls aren’t 100 percent bad.

So when attempting to subvert robocalls, some intelligence is required. That’s where YouMail comes in.

YouMail Saves the Day

YouMail’s Robocall Index is the standard-bearer in robocall categorization. Top news organizations across the country cite our data: USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, NBC News, and more. We’ve used our proprietary data and years of research to launch the best robocall blocking app available today.

YouMail has stopped more than 1 billion robocalls from ever being placed. When your phone rings, our patented technology compares the incoming number against a library of millions of known spam numbers. If there’s a hit, we send the call to a greeting that plays a “This number is not in service” greeting, which often nixes future calls. Our index extrapolates the data collected from tens of millions of calls each month placed to other YouMail users.

Our system creates an ecosystem where each of us protects the other, which works out to more than 350 million phone numbers to date. We let the good callers in, even the robocall alerts and reminders you actually want, and keep the bad out, spam robocalls and humans. Good riddance!

Look up in the sky: It’s a bird, it’s a plane, no … it’s the robocall blocking industry’s greatest superhero: YouMail!

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