Time Is Money

David Pogue, the personal-technology columnist for the New York Times is hopping mad. Why? It’s those annoying little messages you have to listen to before you can leave voice-mail for a cell-phone user. You know:

“At the tone, please record your message. When you have finished recording, you may hang up, or press 1 for more options. To leave a callback number, press 5. (Beep)”

Turns out these things are only there for one reason (after all, we all know what to do, right?): they keep you on the air for a few seconds longer. By doing so, they generate revenue, and plenty of it. Mr. Pogue calculates:

If Verizon’s 70 million customers leave or check messages twice a weekday, Verizon rakes in about $620 million a year. That’s your money. And your time: three hours of your time a year, just sitting there listening to the same message over and over again every year.

These guys sure have a lot of moxie. David Pogue thinks we don’t have to put up with it. Learn more here.


  1. I’m sorry this never gained any traction, funny thing is it never really bothered me before but now every time I hear one of these message it drives me crazy. They don’t make filing a complaint easy at these sites either. If David Pogue’s clout can’t change it… not sure what will.

    Posted June 24, 2010 at 9:25 am | Permalink
  2. Malcolm says

    Yes, this still raises my blood pressure every time.

    Posted June 24, 2010 at 9:28 am | Permalink

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