Land Lines as Buggy Whips
Posted by Allison Fine on August 24, 2009
A friend dropped off her son at college last week. There were a host of new fangled differences about dorm life from when she had gone to college, well, let’s just say a while ago. One in particular caught my eye.
He brought the usual stuff, clothes, posters and a toothbrush, the same things we did. He also brought his laptop, and a flat screen TV. But then she noticed something different. Instead of calling the telephone company to turn on the land line, they called the cable company instead for the DSL line. He had his cell phone, which is good because there are no land lines in dorm rooms any more.
This makes perfect sense, why should the university have to wrangle with the maintenance of the phones when kids aren’t using them.
But it gave me pause beause although I know that land lines have been replaced by cell phones by millennials as part of the research I did for the Social Citizens paper, I never really thought about a land line less world. Would it matter?
Well, one thing for sure is that it reduce one ugly wire that runs from the street to the house. That’s good.
It should be less expensive as it is overseas, however, it isn’t and may not be here because of the telecom vice grip on pricing. Hooray for deregulation, so glad they broke up that AT&T monopoly!
The fact that most everyone has a cell phone now, and the tiny sliver that doesn’t will soon, certainly is a great thing for social change. Think about these data according to International Telecommunications Union, ” our planet is now home to about “1.27 billion fixed lines and 2.68 billion mobile accounts,”As MobileActive.org has shown us over the past few years, there have been amazing efforts to organize people with the ease of cell phones and text messaging.
I think the big thing for social change organizations is that they won’t have to worry so much phone lists aging out of date. We’re all going to carry our numbers with us regardless of the carrier or hardware. Organizations are going to be able to reach supporters wherever they go. They onus is then on those same organizations to treat those numbers and their owners with great respect so that they won’t opt out of those lists.
Numbers staying wiht us are also a huge plus for those of us who have a really hard time remembering our own phone numbers!
Note: The same friend who just dropped off her son at college just forwarded this article from the Des Moines Register on the growing trend of colleges removing land lines.
This entry was posted on August 24, 2009 at 9:55 am and is filed under Social Media. Tagged: cell phones, International Telecommunications Union, MobileActive, Social Citizens. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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