TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Unlisted Phone Number

Re: Unlisted Phone Number

Steve Crow (
3 Mar 2007 22:52:39 -0800

I think the better question is why, for about 100 years, the phone
companies have been charging subscribers for the privilege of NOT
listing the number ... is there some sort of additional effort required
to accomplish this task?

On Mar 2, 12:01 pm, Patricia Pascale <> wrote:

> Patrick,

> I'm not sure if you can help me but I've not been able to find
> information on when "unlisted" phone numbers first came to use.

> I'm a novelist, working on my third book, and trying to find this
> info.

> Can you help or point me in the right direction?

> Many thanks,

> Patricia

> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: I do not know when they first got
> started, but I can tell you that in the 1922 Chicago Telephone
> Company alphabetical directory, on the page entitled "Services
> You Can Obtain From Our Business Office" non-published/unlisted
> phone numbers were available at the rate of an additional five
> cents per month. PAT]

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: According to telco there is an
additional effort involved. Telco estimates a certain time frame
required for each directory inquiry call. This time frame is
completely lost when telco has to argue with callers about numbers
being unlisted and/or unpublished, i.e. time spent listening to
callers telling the operator how dumb she is, demanding to speak
with a supervisor, insisting 'party would want to speak with me',
impersonating a police officer with a 'right to know number', etc.
All those needless conversations between caller and operator take
additional time. That, telco says, is where the extra money is
spent; in dealing with persistent callers. PAT]

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