Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Thursday, May 15, 2021

The mass adoption of cellphones as the only household phones people use began three years ago. The trending continues apace: A combined 29 percent of Americans either have only cellphones, or else pair them with a landline phone which they never use for talk.

The reasons for this aren’t surprising, but the source of the latest research is:

Such families often either have their landline hooked exclusively to a computer or rely so heavily on their cells that they ignore landline calls because they are probably from telephone solicitors, said Stephen Blumberg, senior scientist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and an author of the report.

Um, the CDC? The disease people? Why exactly they were commissioned to looking into telephone usage pattern is a mystery. Will the decline of a landline housephone lead to a lessening of germ transference via dirty earpiece/receiver? One can only hope.

As for viewing the landline as a junk-call magnet, I can relate to that. When I still had a landline phone myself (three years ago now), it had devolved into exactly that: A number that I never gave out, so I could always be assured that any incoming calls on it were ones I didn’t want to take. A relatively expensive filter, but its function was reflective of the state of personal telecommunications by this point.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 05/15/2008 09:00:24 PM
Category: Society, Tech
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While CBS will be getting a robust and sprawling Web media operation in its $1.8 billion acquisition of CNET Networks, in my mind there are two chief reasons for the deal:

- News.com

- TV.com

It just about begins and ends there. Both those sites — or, more properly, their browser addresses — make synergistic sense under CBS’ umbrella. Everything else — the long-established audiences, the physical Silicon Valley hub — is incidental, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see chunks of CNET eventually get jettisoned by the new corporate parent.

CNET has occupied that valuable news.com URL real estate for more than a decade. I always thought it was peculiar that such a fundamental brand/concept should take you to a narrow slice of news, instead of a more-general news portal; but that’s CNET’s reward for cornering that domain so early. Having news.com resolve to CBS News would confer an almost default status to the network for online news consumption, simply by virtue of the easily-input Web address.

Meanwhile, the TV.com domain came under CNET’s control more recently. Just nurturing its existing community-building formula will pay off for the short term; further out, it could be used to cement CBS’ position in televised media even further.

Yes, I’m characterizing this deal as essentially another dollars-for-domains transaction. Unlike other instances, though, this one actually makes sense. There’s no other way to establish the kind of mindshare that two dead-simple dot-com addresses bring. Having these two roads lead to CBS online properties will count big, with overall brand-building and online revenue generation via ads and other channels.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 05/15/2008 01:35:28 PM
Category: Business, Internet, TV
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Speaking of Tom Sachs, he’s a multi-media kinda pop-cultural artist, as evidenced by his collection of short films.

They look to be mostly stop-motion animation pieces with funky soundtracks/voiceovers attached. Sachs collaborated with the Neistat Brothers on these, and the influence definitely shows.

My favorites from this group are: “McDonald’s Teaser”, musically accompanied by the late Wesley Willis’ “Rock and Roll McDonald’s”; and “Bitches and Money”, a 1/25th-scale tour through a ghetto, backed appropriately by NWA’s “Gangsta Gangsta”.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 05/15/2008 12:56:18 PM
Category: Comedy, Creative, Internet, Movies, Pop Culture
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