There’s nothing quite like waking up early on a Sunday morning to a voicemail ping that a new message is waiting to be heard. Imagine my non-delight as, at 7:00am, I listened to some woman start a five-minute rant against and article I wrote eight years ago — and she started it all off with this sentence:
“You’re a piece of sh@t.”
I’m not spelling out the her word of the day, but you get the idea of where the rest of her message was heading.
Based on the Googly mess that is a Google Voice email transcription of that voicemail, and the manner in which it started, I deleted the voicemail after that first sentence without listening to an insane person trying to wield imaginary power against ruining my day.
I found it highly amusing that the Google Voice email transcription ended the call with the woman admonishing me to be kinder and gentler and to become a “compassionate person!” Harr! There’s nothing quite like the cold fish of irony slapping a hapless caller right in the face as payback for drunk dialing!
I am concerned about the abolishment of reliable, mechanical, communication when it comes to “plain old telephone service” — POTS — and the future of voice and data communication.
Hurricane Sandy has shoved forward the end of the copper telephone line. Big communication companies have decided it is in their best interest to push people onto cellular networks instead of rebuilding what was lost: Traditional “communication by wireline” that has been a staple of everyday communication in the USA for almost a hundred years.
The changing landscape has Verizon, AT&T and other phone companies itching to rid themselves of the cost of maintaining their vast copper-wire networks and instead offer wireless and fiber-optic lines like FiOS and U-verse, even though the new services often fail during a blackout.
“The vision I have is we are going into the copper plant areas and every place we have FiOS, we are going to kill the copper,” Lowell C. McAdam, Verizon’s chairman and chief executive, said last year. Robert W. Quinn Jr., AT&T’s senior vice president for federal regulatory issues, said the death of the old network was inevitable. “We’re scavenging for replacement parts to be able to fix the stuff when it breaks,” he said at an industry conference in Maryland last week. “That’s why it’s going to happen.”
The Good — well, we did it — it took us awhile and happened in a very ramshackle manner. We moved ourselves with the help of a cast of extras. One ancient tractor, a front-loading “bin,” two borrowed trailers, the land rover, some Bulgarians, our neighbour Manuel and our friends Joachim and Zee.