The End (Sort Of) Of the Landline
It sometimes amazed people that we here at the Scalzi Compound still have a landline. We do, basically because I receive (terrible, horrible, low-speed) internet service through my phone company, and it’s basically cheaper to bundle it with a landline than to get it by itself. And also, because if the power goes down, the cell phone towers go down too, but the direct phone lines (usually) stay up. Living in rural America, that makes some bit of sense.
With that said, in the last few years it’s become abundantly clear that the only people calling us on our landline were a) robocallers/telemarketers, b) dentists/medical offices reminding us of appointments, and c) my mother in law. And of those, the robocallers/telemarketers were by far the highest volume, even with the various laws, etc against them. Even though I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t answer the phone if I don’t recognize the phone number, the phone still rings and I still check. The rate of return on even that bit of action is super low.
So I’m not doing that anymore. As of today, everything gets forwarded to my Google Voice number (which I got, like, ten years ago or something). The legitimate callers can leave a message; the rest of them I don’t have to deal with, not even a ring (my mother-in-law will now just call Krissy directly on her cell phone). Google Voice emails me a transcription when someone leaves a message, so I don’t even have to check messages like a common schmoe. Simple, easy, and the end of the landline being a pain in the ass.
And! Since we’re not actually getting rid of the landline, we can still use it to make outgoing calls if we like (which I do when I’m doing phone interviews because the audio is generally clearer). So we get the few remaining benefits of a landline without having to deal with the negatives. Which is kind of the best case scenario.
(And as for the robocallers on my cell line — well, Google actually does a reasonable job letting me know who is likely to be a spam caller there, and soon will give me the option of not having suspected spam calls show up at all, so there’s that. Beyond that, at this point cell phones give one so much more customization regarding who gets to access you that once again keeping a landline in most cases is an exercise in futility.)
So if you were hoping ever to call me on my landline, sorry. That moment has now passed. I could call you, though. There’s still a chance!