Why Yes, I Still Have a Landline
Gizmodo is curious to know who still has a landline and why. Well, I do, and here’s why:
1. The landline comes bundled with my DSL line and it’s not really any cheaper to have just the DSL service and not the landline, plus my provider whines petulantly if you ask for just the raw DSL line, so the hell with it, I’ll keep the landline.
2. Continuity. It’s useful to have had the same phone number for the last 14 years.
3. When the power goes out the phone lines still work. Likewise when the cell phones occasionally and inexplicably bork for whatever period of time it is until they unbork themselves again.
4. It’s the phone number that’s generally available, saving my cell phone number for people I know personally.
5. Voice reception is much better, so when I actually want to talk to people, rather than text them, it’s the phone I use.
6. If I want my wife to join in on a phone call for some reason (or she me), I don’t have to do some sort of complicated routing thing involving Skype/Google Hangouts/Conference calling, I just say “pick up the other receiver” and she does.
7. It’s actually useful to have a phone that serves the house generally, and not a specific member of it; for example, business that needs to be done in/around the house itself.
8. Inertia. There are ways to get around all the stuff mentioned above but it requires time/effort/interest on my part, or I could just keep the damn landline and have to do nothing. So.
9. Immunity to social judgment about keeping a landline. No, I don’t care if you think it’s odd/weird/quaint/adorable I still have one. It’s useful to me and I’m not going to give it up just because most people have ditched theirs at this point. You’re not the boss of me, jerks!
10. Nostalgia for dialing “1” before the area code (this last one is a lie, but I had to get to 10 reasons for completist purposes).
Mind you, I don’t judge (or, really, care) if you do or do not have a landline yourself. It’s not something I think is actually that important. But they are in point of fact getting rarer and rarer. Someone somewhere will have the very last landline one day. I wonder if it will be me.