The End Of Voicemail?

Ken AshfordScience & Technology1 Comment

New York Times:

“Once upon a time, voice mail was useful,” said Yen Cheong, 32, a book publicist in New York who has transitioned almost entirely to e-mail and text messaging. According to her calculation, it takes 7 to 10 steps to check a voice mail message versus zero to 3 for an e-mail.

“If you left a message, I have to dial in, dial in my code,” Ms. Cheong said. “Then I mess up and redial. Then once I hear the message, I need the phone number. I try to write it down, and then I have to rewind the message to hear it again,” she added, feigning exhaustion.

Yglesius comments, and represents the views of many, including me:

If you leave a message on my cell phone, I might get back to you one of these days. If you leave a message on my office voicemail, forget about it. I’m not even entirely sure I know how to check it. Definitely the whole time I was employed at The Atlantic I never once returned a voicemail. I figure that anyone who’s really eager to get in touch with me will email me. In general, I’m not a fan of talking on the phone, but listening to recorded messages of other people talking to me on the phone is absolutely the worst.

[Emphasis added]

Plus, it is me, or has phone reception generally — with both landlines and cell phones — gotten gradually worse and worse over the past, oh, 15 years?