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Pledge Drive Bells

They’re just wrapping up another pledge drive on my local NPR station. Listening to it brings back to mind a question that’s nagged at me for a few years now: as you listen to the breathless pledge-pitchers, you hear telephones ringing in the background as people call in. But they’re the telephone sounds of 1975, back when there were literally ringing bells in your phone. Nobody owns those phones anymore; no phones make those noises anymore.

What gives?

5 comments to Pledge Drive Bells

  • Sarge

    Damn! I never noticed that!

  • Jennifer

    I think no one has those rings anymore because everyone wants to be a unique and special snowflake. It’s much cooler to have the latest Sum 41 tune ring on your phone than a boring old “RING!” But, just to let you know, I have a cell phone (under protest-boyfriend made me) but my cell phone RINGS DAMMIT! All ringers unite!

  • Jenna

    As a pledge drive phone volunteer, I offer this answer: They really do use those old ringy phones. It’s PUBLIC radio, remember? They don’t have the funds to cover fancy-schmancy phones just for the pledge drives!

  • HareTrinity

    They don’t?

    Sounds like a theory to be looked into.

  • mondopercipient

    Jenna,
    That may be true where you live, but I assure you that it is not true everywhere. I have a brother who works with public radio stations, and they have outfitted all the ones I know about with the latest digital broadcast technology.

    I suggest that it might be possible that some places just use them for the nostalgic sound in the background. Some of us still like the sound of vinyl records too.

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