Hearst Launches ‘Cosmo Fake Calls’

hearst_phone_calls.jpgSuffering from chronic bad blind date syndrome? Need a better way to escape from the awkward silences and painful convos without hurting the poor guy’s feelings? Well girls, today’s your lucky day.

As part of its digital plan, Hearst has partnered with a company called Moderati to launch something called “Cosmo Fake Calls,” a scripted call-back service that gals can book when they need to escape from a nightmare date. You can choose from different scripts (such as “boyfriend, girlfriend, or fake French lover”) and pick when you want to be saved by the ring, whether it’s five, 15, 30, 60 minutes &#151 or immediately, of course.

The service is vaguely similar to the Rejection Hotline, the phone number that leads to a not-so-subtle recording informing him of your lack of interest. Since the hotline’s creation in 2001, over 100 million rejects have called in.

Offering phone numbers in over 100 cities (NYC’s is 212-660-2245, by the way), that company now boasts rejection business cards, email addresses and even offers users a personal “screen number” — for those guys that fall somewhere short of “hell no” — where a voicemail is sent to you via email as a mp3 file.

While the Rejection Hotline’s services are all free, Cosmo still sees a demand for their new service. At $.99 a call, the self-professed “relationship bible” believes “Cosmo Fake Calls” will become a go-to strategy for its young readers who have grown up in the era of texting fees. “As Cosmo has 15 million young female readers, many of whom are single and dating, we expect there will be a need for this ‘mobile best friend’ when those dates don’t all go as planned,” explained a marketing reprensentative. “The whole experience is scripted and utterly believable!”

— Emily Million