Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Why do we need a phone book?

I wasn't aware until this week that the powers that be would still be printing and delivering the hard copy of the Yellow Pages and regular residential phone lists.

There was a big push by a man in Montreal a couple of years back to stop distributing them. He wasn't a self-professed "tree hugger" or anything but he did say it was a waste of paper. The drive seemed to gain some momentum, at least back then, and frankly it seemed to make sense.

I saw them sitting outside of my building, presumably left there for each of us to pick up if we so chose, so I grabbed one. I have to admit, I've always like having a big 'ole phone book, if nothing else, to look up a number for a pizza place or a cab, which I don't have much occasion to call that much anymore.

I guess most people don't see the use for them, and I understand that. You can look up any number at in Canada and really you can get almost any number you need via the net or even your smart phone. The Yellow Pages even has a app!

So why then keep printing them?

The old argument I guess that there are many elderly and senior folks that don't have computer access. That's an angle I could support.

Except for one thing.

I'm not in my "party prime" anymore nor am I sliding into "zoomer" territory, but somewhere in between. I wear glasses and contacts but not bifocals - yet!

So you can understand my frustration doing the first thing everyone does when they get the new phone book, look up my own phone number, only to realize I CANNOT FOR THE LIFE OF ME READ IT!!!

The letters were so tiny, I seriously had to adjust the lighting, push my face closer, squint, look for a magnifying glass, before a friend arrived and I asked him if he could please tell me if he saw my name on the page!!! Humiliating!!!

If I was having that much trouble, how could seniors or anyone with WORSE eyesight then me possibly read it?!

It does not make one lick of sense to me to print something that by all accounts is obsolete, but to make the typing so minute that no one can see it without help... is not only preposterous but a bad business model!

Maybe someone can explain the value in it to me.

For now though, I'm a not a fan.

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