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When Land Lines Go Away…
(Photo: Flickr/massdistraction)

(Photo: Flickr/massdistraction)

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Month by month, year by year, American households are dropping their telephone land lines. Going entirely cellular.

In 2006, just 11 percent of homes had cell phones only. By the first half of this year, that number was 23 percent and climbing. And 37 percent of households say they don’t answer land lines anymore.

For the young, it’s second nature. Grab the cell. For American communications culture, it’s a sea change. No more communal phone. No Bobby, Suzy, Mom, Dad — “It’s for you!”

This hour, On Point: losing land lines, and what that means for how we communicate.

Guests:

Spencer Ante, an associate editor for BusinessWeek magazine, where he follows the telecommunications industry.

Scott Steinberg, publisher of the technology product review site Digital Trends.

Mimi Ito, research scientist at the University of California, Irvine, studying new media use, especially among young people in the U.S. and Japan. She’s the lead researcher on a recently completed three-year study of teens and the Internet by the Digital Youth Project, supported by the MacArthur Foundation.

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