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No Phone

Posted 2010.01.11 13.02 in Computers/Internet/Technology, Family/Friends by Stephanie

Well I thought it over and rolled it around in my head and then went ahead and cancelled my phone line this morning.

My mum was a bit wierded about it, and I guess I am feeling a bit wierded too. I’m sure it’s the ‘new reality’ or a part thereof. It’s just, at the end of the day, who can justify spending $45 per month, for a handful of real phone calls and a hundred or so spam calls?

The phone company rep was all trying to convince me to stay, but I explained that there was no problem or complaint with the service – I just don’t use it. And I can’t stand the ringing of the spammers.

Appearantly there is a new Call Privacy feature (for the low-low price of $6.95 per month) that lets you block up to eleven numbers from ever calling you again. And I did contemplate that before giving the final plug-pulling approval. It’s just – that’s another $7 plus tax every month, putting my bill over $50 per month, and it only blocks 11 spammers.

If it were the opposite, i.e. you could put in 11 numbers that are allowed to call, then I might have gone for it. Like, punch in my ‘friend list’ and nobody else but them could call? I’d have tried that I think. But eleven is too low a number, for $7 per month. They ought to look into something like a ‘friend list’ though – like with Skype or iChat or ICQ or any of those free IM things, you can set it so that nobody can call you unless they’re on your list. Crazy that free services have this function but expensive commercial services do not.

So the plug gets pulled tomorrow. I did agree to reserve the number for a year, incase I change my mind. We’ll see. Like I said, it feels a bit wierd. I guess I’m old-school enough yet, that you just assume everyone has a ‘real’ phone.

I know that ‘everyone’ doesn’t though – I’ve started seeing the alarm companies advertising that you can get monitoring even if you don’t have a home phone. That’s new. Part of the ‘new reality’ thing again, right?

Do I Need A Telephone?

Posted 2010.01.08 18.02 in Computers/Internet/Technology, Family/Friends by Stephanie

I find myself questioning whether or not I still need a telephone. I’m talking about the landline kind of phone. My iPhone and I are in a committed relationship and I’m certainly not thinking of breaking that off.┬áBut the old fashioned, twisted-pair, landline kind of phone. Do I need it? More and more, I think the answer is no.

It’s costing me over $40 per month, for a basic standard no-frills telephone line. The only extras I have are call display. And using call display, I can see that on average, 2.5% of my inbound phone calls are legitimate. The other 97.5% are telemarketers.

Pretty piss-poor numbers. There are only three legitimate sources of inbound calls who use my phone on any kind of regular basis – my parents, perhaps once a week. A friend, once or twice a month. And my sister, a handfull of times per year. Other than that – bumpkiss. Telemarketers. Mysterious 800 numbers. For this, I’m paying about $500 per year?

I rarely dial out, either. I don’t have a long distance plan so I can’t call long distance. All my friends and family are long distance. That leaves me with… occasionally calling an 800 number? I don’t even use the phone to order pizza, thanks to teh interwebz.

Yeah, I think I’m gonna cancel me a phone line…