Dueling business units

Summary:Elinor Mills blogs about an effort in honor of Earth Day to reduce the number of phone directories published each year. By signing a petition at PaperlessPetition.

Elinor Mills blogs about an effort in honor of Earth Day to reduce the number of phone directories published each year. By signing a petition at PaperlessPetition.org you can request that phone directory companies provide an opt-out opportunity for people who don't want to receive the paper tome.

Clearly, there's money in distributing phone books (I probably get 3-5 per year whether I want them or not) because the directory companies sell ads based on copies distributed. I had a friend that sold Yellow Pages ads and he made a lot of money. These companies aren't going to be big on reducing their reach in any way.

Still, this is a busies that technology is overtaking. I can't remember the last time I used a phone book to look something up. Our house has broadband and there's always 2-3 computers on at any time spread around the house. I've been teaching my kids to use Google as their phone book as well. I'm not sure they even think of looking in a phone book when they need a number.

Ironically, when I viewed Elinor's blog, there was an ad for Qwest DSL up. A case of dueling business units, I guess. If you're looking for a business that's being changed by the Internet even more than the recording industry, this is it.

Topics: Mobility

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