Let suppose following situation:

There is a company private/internal telephone network. The network has got a special feature, that a private telephone call between two office workers can be monitored by a supervisor/manager. That said supervisor can also interfere into the call in a way that he can say something into a microphone that will be heard by both office workers.

What would be the best matching word choice for the given situation?

Example sentence:

<...> into private call took place on Monday at 01:15 PM o'clock.

(The preposition 'into' could be of course replaced or removed depending on proper grammar collocation)

Already found: interference or intrusion does not sound good because of subjective opinion. (Has got a pejorative expression)


To clarify, we can suppose that so called manager is already listening the call (this process is already named as monitoring). I'm going to find a word describing an event when he starts to say something.

I also prefer words from formal language (not any slang).

  • 2
    intervention? Commented Feb 19, 2018 at 15:00
  • 1
    Maybe just break [into the call] Commented Feb 19, 2018 at 15:32
  • You're sentence makes it seem like you're reporting an incident. How is this not pejorative? But how about "The three-way conference calling feature was exercised..."
    – Jim
    Commented Feb 19, 2018 at 16:31
  • The supervisor can override the private call feature and like FumbleFingers said break into the call.
    – Lambie
    Commented Feb 19, 2018 at 17:12
  • 1
    I think you'll find there's nothing special about that because it's telephone call. What would you call the same process if two people were talking - however formally - and a third who'd been merely listening/monitoring/eavesdropping/spying then spoke up/out? Commented Feb 20, 2018 at 1:35

3 Answers 3


Once upon a time (back before things like call waiting and caller ID), this was a standard feature for telephone communication: in an emergency, the operator could interrupt an ongoing telephone conversation. Per Wikipedia, this was called busy-line interrupt or emergency breakthrough (though I vaguely remember it as "operator interruption"). The words interrupt and interruption are sufficiently common that I think you could use either and be understood.

If you specifically want a noun, interruption is the obvious choice, but I think the computer/electronic use of interrupt as a noun (as in the landline expression) would make that a plausible choice, as well. In either case I might use "monitor" or "supervisor" as a modifier. So in your example:

Supervisor interrupt[ion] into private call took place on Monday at 01:15 PM.

If you specified a call interrupt(ion), you could omit the "private call" part:

Supervisor call interrupt[ion] took place on Monday at 01:15 PM.


M-W gives the following definitions without caveats:

Definition of kibitz

intransitive verb

1: to act as a kibitzer

2: to exchange comments: chat

transitive verb: to observe as a kibitzer; especially: kibitz a card game


Definition of kibitzer:

one who looks on and often offers unwanted advice or comment: a kibitzer at a card game;

broadly: one who offers opinions

First Known Use: 1922


Interloping into a private call took place on Monday at 01:15 PM o'clock.

Definition merriam-webster of interlope; interloped; interloping. intransitive verb 1 : to encroach on the rights (as in trade) of others 2 : intrude, interfere

Synonyms of interlope: same dictionary - thesaurus

butt in, interfere, intermeddle, intrude, meddle, mess, muck (about or around), nose, obtrude, poke, pry, snoop

  • Where is this definition from? You need to cite your source.
    – Laurel
    Commented Feb 19, 2018 at 16:04
  • OK, I see you've attributed some parts of the answer (good), but you still need to add a source for the definition you're using (which doesn't come from that link).
    – Laurel
    Commented Feb 19, 2018 at 16:22
  • 1
    Snooping is listening in, eavesdropping. I think OP wants to describe breaking in and saying something as well as listening.
    – Jim
    Commented Feb 19, 2018 at 16:27
  • @Jim single word request for 2 actions is a tall order. I guess i am stuck. Should I rescind my answer?
    – lbf
    Commented Feb 19, 2018 at 16:52

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