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My Landline Is An Anachronism
most of the calls that come in are telemarketers . . .

 10:24 pm on Aug 30, 2012 (gmt 0)

. . . who spoof their numbers and ignore the "DO Not Call" list. I think it's time to let go. I'm going to have a sitdown with my family (each of whom has a smart phone connected to the internet) and see if they think it's time to let go too.



 11:27 pm on Aug 30, 2012 (gmt 0)

To me a land line is like the letter carrier - neither rain, snow, sleet, hail or dark of night, it always works. Can't say that about mobile.



 11:38 pm on Aug 30, 2012 (gmt 0)

I had to go lookup anachronism: something or someone that is not in its correct historical or chronological time, especially a thing or person that belongs to an earlier time...

Sigh, nice bait lawman you know which buttons to push (get it, phone buttons but also mine)...I can relate to that...yoohoo mothership come back and get me...oh dang she disconnected the home line. Guess I'm just going to have to make the best of my visit here ;)


 12:56 am on Aug 31, 2012 (gmt 0)

We keep the ringer and answering service turned off in our home and nobody uses it unless the mobiles are out. We DO keep it though.


 2:03 am on Aug 31, 2012 (gmt 0)

The only reason we really keep the landlines is it's usually the only way to make a call after an earthquake as all the cell phones go busy immediately. The other issue is that I've had the same number almost 25 years and anyone I haven't heard from in eons can still reach me so if I were to drop the landline I'd redirect it to the smart phone.

FWIW, if you want to get rid of the telemarketers you can do what I did and put an intermediate answering machine with an auto-attendant between you and them. Most can't pass through the system and just get bounced and they'll never leave a message so problem solved.

The other way to get rid of telemarketers that is both cheap and effective, which I use on my other line, is to use language that's so mean and vile it makes their ears bleed. They do not call back and they certainly don't keep the number of their list :)


 2:45 am on Aug 31, 2012 (gmt 0)

Last time I looked, the world was divided into:

people who loathe cell phones
people who have cell phones

But then, I only make about two calls a month. I have never wished I could place a frantic call to the cat, saying that I'm at Winco and have forgotten which flavor of Friskies she hates and refuses to touch at least while I'm watching. She'll eat what I buy and like it. And I see no reason why I would want to make it easier for ex-boyfriend to reach me.

I am thinking of getting Caller ID again, though. If it isn't local, I don't pick up.

To me a land line is like the letter carrier - neither rain, snow, sleet, hail or dark of night, it always works.

Only if it's got a cord. Cordless phones go out when the lights do.


 4:12 am on Aug 31, 2012 (gmt 0)

Only if it's got a cord. Cordless phones go out when the lights do.

Have both versions :)



 5:39 am on Aug 31, 2012 (gmt 0)

Cordless phones go out when the lights do.

Only cordless phones that don't have batteries in the base station. You simply need to buy a better cordless phone, or a UPS for your existing phone.

Power failure isn't so traumatic with a little advance planning. When we lose power my desktop computers and DVRs are on UPS, the cordless phones have batteries in the base station and I have emergency lighting that goes on instantly.

FWIW, landlines provide their own power so having a direct connect handset will always work in a blackout. What some people don't realize is if you live too far from down the road, away from the phone hub, or out in the country, that the phone company has a battery attached to your line that charges all time and if you use the phone too much even your landline will drop dead. I never knew this until back in the 80s a guy I knew that lived on the edge of town decided to run a BBS and his line kept dropping dead after people were on his BBS for many hours at a time.


 7:15 pm on Sep 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

Only if it's got a cord. Cordless phones go out when the lights do.

Over here every cordless contains an instruction that it should only be used in addition to a fixed handset.

As I can only get a mobile signal by hanging out of a bedroom window the landline is still essential.


 8:17 pm on Sep 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

Heh, my neighbor across the way must have the same problem. I always see him on on the back porch talking on the phone. ("Why did you get a cell phone?" "Well, so I can use it anywhere, of course.") Fortunately we don't have a very dramatic climate.

I still haven't internalized that expression "land line". I always think ship-to-shore.


 9:40 pm on Sep 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

National land line calls are free here, so I tend to use mine when I can. Mobile calls here are expensive, so mine gets minimum use, mostly messages.

I just found this country's 'no marketing calls' list, so I'm gonna get on there ASAP. Fed up with having my siesta disturbed.

At a shop I worked in, ages ago, a salesman always told the marketers he was a Buddhist, so they just gave up on him....


 11:03 pm on Sep 2, 2012 (gmt 0)

Some of my friends now have VOIP internet phone from Comcast which is stupid because when the internet is down, how do you call them and report it? LOL My internet periodically goes off, my landline has NEVER went off, which would you prefer? Worse yet, when the power goes out the whole phone system dies unless you have UPS, unlike the landline with it's own power where all you need is a handset. Therefore, no cable phones for me as a primary communications device.

Besides, I can already Skype over my internet connection for free, why pay them an extra fee? I mean sure, in the event I ever need 911... but my cell phone will suffice and even give them my GPS coordinates.

Recently when I upgraded my cell phones at the Sprint store the salesman tried to pitch me a Sprint 'landline' <snickers> and I said I already had a cell phone, what's the point? He shows me the desk top handset we could use. Big whoop. I knew it was coming and eventually he shows us the box with the antenna that you "just plug the phones into this...". Ah ha, you mean the wireless broadband transceiver for VOIP phones just like Comcast does? Um, no thanks. Using a cell phone from my house loses the call every now and then, adding dropped calls to my 'landline' wouldn't exactly be an improvement would it?

People also forget that the real landline is also the only way to use a real fax machine and modem, which my old TiVo still uses. I think the TiVo is officially retired now, replaced by dual tuner DVRs, but the fax machine still gets used a couple of times a year although eFax and my scanner have pretty much replaced the need for that too. Need to sort it all out.


 1:21 am on Sep 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

Our family hasn't used landlines since 2003. It does cut down on the number of telemarketers calling. The biggest frustration has been the spotty service from AT&T for the iPhones we have. Even in major cities like LA and SEA there are dead spots.


 2:49 am on Sep 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

We don't have landlines either. We do have strong ATT service so that has also not been a problem with our cellphones.

Fortunately we live in a neighborhood where all power lines are below ground so power outages or downed lines due to ice storms, weather, etc. are infrequent.


 3:37 am on Sep 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

I mean sure, in the event I ever need 911

Interesting point btw. If you call from home the 911 folks know exactly, precisely where you are. Not just your number but the physical address associated with that number.

Call from anything else and you're at the mercy of someone's GPS system. This is, I think, the same system that I periodically visit in the iPad just to see if it still insists I live in the parking lot across the street. There doesn't seem to be any way to send in a correction so they can fine-tune their data.

Besides, at least in this area: Call 911 from a "land line" and you get a trained 911 operator. Call from a cell phone and you get connected to, well, let's not name names but they are not the most highly regarded law-enforcement body in the country.

Moral: If you plan to have a heart attack, have it in your own home. Or, ahem, somebody's home. Or other fixed location.


 7:48 am on Sep 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

Our base phone requires power for all the fancy features like caller ID, it has batteries but it's unknown to me why they wouldn't at least power the phone/ringer without the batteries from that bit of current on the phone line. Next time I get a base phone I'll be it doesn't need power just for incoming/outgoing calls. We don't keep batteries in it... we do have a regular old fashioned phone with rotary dial and a ringer that works fine just with the phone line.

However..... it's VOIP service which of course requires the modem and that has battery backup that lasts a few hours. We live in an area where longer power outages are frequent so we have a generator. It all becomes a moot point unless the cable goes go out. Cell phone goes dead too because we have extender that only works with the internet. :P Have to drive up the hill to get cell phone coverage.

Some of my friends now have VOIP internet phone from Comcast which is stupid because when the internet is down, how do you call them and report it?

I'd just use the cell phone after traveling up the hill to get service. Having said that I have Comcast and if there is one thing I will say positive about them is the cable is rarely out and if it does go out it's usually just for a very short time.


 2:28 pm on Sep 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

When we disconnected our land lines couple of years ago, my only requirement was that we were able to make 911 calls with our cell phones and that local emergency operators were able to trace us and call us back.

If you are having a heart attack or emergency situation, chances are you will not be having it right next to your land line phone. Even if you were in your home but e.g. in the attic and got an attack, you will be most likely grabbing the cellphone in your pocket and not going downstairs to the kitchen phone on the wall. So either way, it's important that they are able to trace the call. OT Flashback - Remember that commercial "I have fallen and I can't get up?"

It is impt that your cellphones are traceable in these 911 situations. 70% of emergency calls are made via cell phones (in and out of the home) so the FCC has mandated the improvement of 911 calls location information from wireless carriers.

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