Yellow Pages Directory Inc

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Technology Marches On: 12 Everyday Tasks That Almost Nobody Does Anymore

NEW YORK - As technology continues its rapid evolution and growth on a near daily basis, we have found ourselves having to do less and less outside of the digital world when it comes to everyday tasks. One by one, things we used to have to do manually can now be done on a computer, or even more conveniently, from the palm of our hand via any recently-designed smartphone.

One of the things this new era of technology has deemed the most obsolete is that clunky old contraption known as the print phone directory. The mainstay of American households for over a century, in recent years phone-books have taken on a smaller and smaller role in our lives, to the point where their detriment to society has clearly outweighed their usefulness. Aside from being hopelessly out-of-date shortly after publication, there are a number of environmental factors to consider in both their creation and destruction after their admittedly short but useful life has concluded.
That said, here's a handy list of a number of activities that you may or may not have realized have fallen by the wayside in our new-and-improved digital age. While most of these changes represent a new era of convenience and efficiency, one could argue that some of them may actually represent steps backwards in our evolutionary cycle. It's up to you to be the judge.

An old beaten up phone book with, believe it or not, a phone book holder hanging beneath it. File photo: Pixabay.

In addition to many phone-book-related items, this list also includes other daily, all-too-common activities that are falling by the wayside as technology marches on. Some might read this list and grow a little nostalgic for the way things were, while others may appreciate the many advantages of technology today all the more.

1) Memorizing phone numbers

In the olden days – the olden days being the 80s and early 90s – people actually had to memorize phone numbers of their friends and loved ones, or short of that, at least carry around a small, hand-written phone book to keep those numbers within reach when they were needed. But nowadays, every cell phone has a dedicated contacts directory, and you can call anyone you know by voicing a command. That said, most people nowadays would probably have trouble telling you the phone number of their own mother or girlfriend, let alone the numbers of people they have far less contact with. While it is certainly convenient to be able to do this, one could argue that the less we use the brains, the worse off we are as a species.

2) Using a phone book to find a company to do work at your house

Modern generations, such as Generation Z and Millennials, probably don't even know what a Yellow Pages phone book is. More often than not, they regularly turn to digital alternatives, as well as websites such as Angie's List and Yelp in order to find services they need when it comes to doing work on their home. Those aforementioned websites make it easy to read user reviews and ratings before deciding to contact a given company to ensure that you're getting the best quality for your money. Today, few, if anyone at all cracks open a print Yellow Pages directory. it's straight to the internet.

3) Figuring out math in your head

This is another category that goes hand-in-hand with memorizing phone numbers. Back in the day, people used to have to add, subtract, multiply, and more within the recesses of their very own brains. Not today. In addition to the plethora of other technologies available in your smartphone, the most basic of apps they all come with is a calculator. That's right, no one has to know how to count or do any other type of mathematical activity on their own any more, and once again one has to argue if that is or is not a good thing for us as a society. With every advance in technology, there are always pluses and minuses.

4) Telling time by using the hands on a clock

Analog clocks are nearly a thing of the past. People with smartphones are buying things like wall clocks and watches and smaller and smaller numbers, mainly using them as fashion statements or – with the advent of devices such as Fitbit – wrist-worn fitness trackers. Pretty soon we won’t be seeing clocks with hands at all anymore, as a growing segment of the population wouldn't even know what they were if they saw them.

5) Having a record or CD collection

I used to have a pretty big music CD collection. Now my collection is comprised of just a couple of favorites that I couldn't bear to part with; the rest were sold to the used CD store across town. That is, I sold them after I ripped all of them to my iTunes library. Nowadays, people are using their cell phones storing their entire music collections which can be instantly retrieved and listened to at will not only through a headphone jack, but thanks to Bluetooth technology, on a number of high-end digital speakers as well, making the smartphone a truly all-in-one experience when it comes to your daily activities. With more and more storage available on even base models, you can load up your phone with a nearly endless sea of MP3 files and enjoy listening to every song you have at anytime you want. That's a lot better than having to pick out just a handful of CDs to stick in your bag for a car trip or train ride like we used to do.

6) Printing your favorite photos and making a photo album

Here's another thing that's falling by the wayside. Remember going on a trip, taking all sorts of snapshots, and then going to your local pharmacy to have all those pictures developed so you could pick out the best ones to include in a physical photo album? Those days have come and gone; again, cell phone cameras are approaching – and in many cases exceeding – the quality of many high-end point-and-shoot digital cameras, and fewer and fewer people are actually bothering to print their shots out. Instead, they are content to leave them on their phones, which serve as massive portable digital photo albums for most people these days.

7) Looking up theater or movie times through the newspaper

Remember having to look up the phone number of your local theater in your Yellow Page directory? And after doing so, calling your theater and having to listen to an endless recording of the different movies and showtimes for that day? If you don't, perhaps it's for the best...it wasn't a very fun thing to do. But again, with the magic of smartphones, you can just simply type – or even speak – the name of any movie you're interested in seeing and your phone will provide a list of movie theaters and showtimes based on your GPS positioning. You can even purchase your tickets on your phone and have them texted or emailed to you, enabling you to skip the line at the cinema.

8) Running to the store for a last minute gift

I think just about everybody today is familiar with websites such as Amazon and their Prime program which offers free 2-day shipping – soon to become free 1-day shipping – which is perfect if you suddenly remembered your mother's birthday at the end of the week and are too busy to run out to the store and search endlessly for just the right gift. Instead, eCommerce sites offer a plethora of items at your fingertips with a variety of fast shipping options to take advantage of. No more pulling out phone books to find where stores are, or braving crowded malls and check-out lanes...instead, a few button-presses on your phone and your package will be well on its way to you. Granted, this sort of activity is shuttering a lot of local retail businesses, so you might want to think twice about doing this if you want to help support your own community. But sometimes time is a factor, and it's nice to have this option available when you need it.

9) Mailing a handwritten letter to someone

Nowadays a hand-written letter is simply a novelty and little more. With email, texting, Facebook, and a plethora of other options for staying in touch with people on a daily basis, letter-writing is seen by many as a thing of the past. It still is nice though when you want to add that personal touch to someone you are especially fond of, but otherwise it just doesn't happen much anymore.

10) Using a dictionary to see how to spell a word

With practically every program on your phone possessing a spell-checker of some sort, apparently people don't need to know how to spell anymore, either. Again, this goes hand-in-hand with knowing how to add, multiply or remember phone numbers. Like those other issues, this could certainly be seen as a negative, but there are times when you just wouldn't know how to spell a given word and it's nice to know that technology can help you from looking like a complete illiterate when it counts.

11) Making a phone call from a phone booth

I'm writing this article, and even I barely remember what a phone booth looks like. It's likely that anyone born from the early 1990’s on would even have any idea what a phone booth was, let alone what it looks like. That's probably not a bad thing.

12) Carrying cash

It seems more people nowadays are using credit and debit cards to pay for things than actual cash, but cash is still king...at least, for now. There are more and more apps arriving on phones – such as Google Play and others – that are making even carrying around plastic obsolete, let alone paper. But while any form of payment still works these days, you're going to see that currency is going digital sooner rather than later.

As you can see, smartphones add a great deal of convenience to our lives, and while some may argue that they also can be a detriment when it comes to our personal growth and evolution – after all, it's good to know how to count, spell and memorize things – cell phones nonetheless have become a part of daily life that few people can do without. This instance, I'd say the positives outweigh the negatives. At least, that is, for now.

Further Declines in Print Yellow Pages Ads Expected

Print Yellow Pages are expected to see a 19% decline in an industry said to remain a $3 Billion dollar a year business.

NEW YORK – Research firm eMarketer has released a study that expects digital advertising to surpass spending on traditional TV, billboard and print by the end of this year.

A portion of that decline is expected to be print Yellow Pages which are expected to see a 19% decline in an industry said to remain a $3 Billion dollar a year business. This translated to figures in the area of $570 Million fewer ad dollars for print yellow pages books.

Winners in the online ad space sector remain to be Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) and Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL)which are expected to capture a whopping 60% of all online ad spending, with Facebook taking in somewhat more than Google since it is also the owner of popular social platform Instagram.

The Yellow Pages business, specifically the print product, has seen continually declines over the years with our own Homepage poll reflecting 64% of people using online versions of the Yellow Pages most, versus the 36% claiming to still use print more often.

According to QZ.com the Yellow Pages Opt Out Movement has been particularly painful for print Yellow Pages publishers as consumers have the new-found opportunity to choose not to receive delivery of the print book, an effort which began after Yellow Pages Goes Green and Paperless Petition began online petitions for opt-out regulation.

What To Do With Your Old Yellow Pages? Don’t Simply Throw Them Away, But Recycle Them

by Christopher Boyle

 

NEW YORK - By now you’ve seen all the infamous pictures online of cast-aside phone books overflowing out of garbage bins and dumpsters or rotting by the thousands while lying in municipal dumping grounds, unwanted by the masses who merely have to whip out their cell phones in order to get a phone number instantly thanks to the ease and speed of the internet. The concept of print telephone directories is hopelessly outdated when compared to its web-based brethren, but while communication companies continue to churn out these relics that often plunk down on uninvited on your doorstep – unless you’ve had the gumption to opt-out of delivery – you can’t simply throw them away like so many do and expect them to be disposed of properly. These days “going green” is in, and that applies equally to your yellow pages; the only responsible thing to do is not to throw them in the trash, but to make sure they’re recycled properly.

 

It’s important to note that statistics indicate paper products of a wide variety of types currently make up approximately 30 percent of all waste that the human race generates as a whole, which – by overall volume alone – represents our largest source of waste by a wide margin, and phone books currently make up a large percentage of that paper waste. But it certainly doesn’t have to be that way.
Now, you may think to yourself, “Why do so many phone books end up in the trash? Isn’t paper easy to recycle?” Well, unfortunately, not all paper is created equal. In fact, many recyclers will not take phone books due to the fact that the pages in question are exceptionally light – due to the fibers being shorter than normal, a cost-cutting measure known as “mixed paper” – limiting their ability to be recycled and re-made into new paper products. It’s actually to the point that phone book paper can contaminate a batch of otherwise acceptable-quality paper, rendering the entire mix unless. However, there are ways to recycle phone books that require thinking outside the box, and doing so enables you to prevent the waste and pollution that simply discarding them into a landfill would cause.

 

The most obvious way to recycle a phone book is to use it to make yet more phone books; while the short fiber paper does not lend itself to other paper products, it can be re-fabricated to serve as new directories, although the fibers will require additional strengthening via the addition of scrap wood or other similar materials. But that’s not the only way that phone books can be put to use once their (very) short-lived usefulness has come to an end. Phone book paper fiber can be utilized in conjunction with other substances to create a whole greater than the sum of its parts, including useful items such as insulation materials, ceiling tiles, paper towels, fertilizer, grocery bags, cereal boxes, and certain types of lightweight copy paper.

 

According to studies, if everyone in the United States took steps to recycle their phone books annually, an astonishing 700,000 tons of paper – equating to over 2,000,000 cubic yards of landfill space – would be saved. In fact, for every 500 print telephone directories that are recycled, 7,000 gallons of water, 3.5 cubic yards of landfill space, an average of 23 trees, and over 4,000 kilowatts of power are saved. And again, that’s just from 500 books…imagine if everyone across the country got in on the action, and how much better it would be for our natural resources, environment, and economy.

 

It should be noted that a typical phone book can be wholly recycled, but it is important to make sure before doing so that there aren’t additions to the books in question that would interfere with the process; for example, many phone books come encased in plastic bags or wrapping to protect them from the elements – short fiber paper doesn’t react well to water – and that would need to be disposed of before turning the book in at a recycling center

 

Of course, if a recycling center is not within driving distance and your municipality doesn’t offer pick-up services, there are other ways to utilize an old phone book instead of tossing it in the trash. For example, the paper can be shredded and used for reptile bedding or as part of a home composing system, as most phone book pages are printed with vegetable and/or soy-based inks due to the fact that pages are typically uncoated.

Naturally, the end goal is to cease the use of print phone books altogether, as the digital alternatives are better in every conceivable manner. But until that happy day, the next best thing you can do for your environment in the here and now and for generations to come is to make sure you recycle your phone books until the time comes that they are no longer made.

YellowPagesGoesGreen.org Announces Results of Ongoing Four-Year Survey; Online Yellow Pages Continues to Trump Print

NORTHPORT, NEW YORK — YellowPagesGoesGreen.org, a massive business directory website at the forefront of the environmentally-conscious “Green“ movement, is proud to announce results of its ongoing four-year survey to determine the growing consensus of the public at large as to the choices they make when it comes to accessing telephone directories; are they going with print or online, physical or digital? And, according to a completely impartial and factual survey conducted by YellowPagesGoesGreen (YPGG), the trend established by our 2013 survey continues as the public’s reliance upon outdated print telephone books has diminished even further as the masses embrace the speed and efficiency of online directories such as YPGG to get the information they need to procure the goods and services that they want.

 

Conducted over the course of one year on YPGG’s home page and participants carefully screened to ensure that only one vote could be tallied per IP address to ensure a fair and impartial outcome, the survey’s results were quite conclusive- out of a total of 2963 votes asking which version of the Yellow Pages do they use the most – paper or online – only 36 percent (1061 votes) of users indicated paper; the remaining 64 percent, making up 1900 votes, overwhelmingly indicated online sources such as YPGG. Compared to our 2013 survey, this represents an increase of four percent in terms of consumers who utilize online phone directories and, likewise, a corresponding four percent drop in paper directory use overall. The obvious conclusion that one can and should draw from these results is that the public continues to recognize that digital is the way to go when it come to getting the fastest and most up-to-date telephone directory information.

 

Print Yellow Pages are a slowly dying breed; according to a recent article published by Consumerist, while still an industry that still generates profit, the reach and grasp of print directories have shown considerable shrinkage in recent years, and part of the reason that they still continue to be viable as a business venture is because they have begin integrating themselves with their one-time nemesis – online directories – in a desperate bid to remain relevant in a digital age.

 

“It’s not going to be a growing business at this point, as the publisher of the Yellowbook directories in NYC cut its Brooklyn and Manhattan editions. Dex Media, publisher of Verizon directories, serves all five boroughs but no longer has Spanish-language or neighborhood editions,” Consumerist said. “These are not the heavy door-thwackers of the past, either — the books have gone on a diet, as most retail advertisers have turned to the internet in the digital age. One reason print-directory publishers have stayed in business is by bundling print ads with online listings and digital marketing services.”

 

Businesses are leaving print phone books in record numbers in recent years; The Sales Lion, a commerce and marketing blog, recently published an entire article directly dismantling the failing print Yellow Pages advertising industry, equating it with literally standing on a bridge and throwing your hard-earned dollars to the wind.

 

“I wrote an article about this recently explaining how the advertising model of yellow pages simply doesn’t fit the mind of today’s consumer,” they said. “Today’s consumer searches online before they do anything else. Their first step towards making a purchasing is essentially the first keys they hit on their computers at work or at home to begin the information gathering process. It’s safe to say that Yellow Pages, at least the ‘book’ form, won’t be around in a few more years as businesses get smarter and smarter with their advertising dollars.”

 

However, the failing business model of print Yellow Pages isn’t the only reason people are abandoning it in favor of online sources like YPGG in droves; according to Triple Pundit, a “green” business blog, the environmental impact of both the manufacture and eventual disposal of print phone directories as a huge and ever-growing source of pure garbage has been significant and only continues to get worse, citing a waste management guide published by New Mexico State University.

 

“A key suggestion from the university is to eliminate phone books. Just the white pages alone cost 5 million trees a year. And while phone books are delivered via snail-mail once a year, services allow people to opt-out of automatic phone book delivery. And smartphone apps replace the yellow pages,” they said. “New York City’s Department of Environmental Protection swapped phone books for electronic phone directories and eliminated about 1.3 tons of paper every year. Plus, it reduced greenhouse gas impacts by 2.8 metric tons of carbon equivalent (MTCE) a year. Recycling that amount would only produce a reduction of one MTCE a year.”

 

No matter how you look at it – either from a business standpoint, an environmental one, or a simple matter of efficiency and convenience – the masses have spoken on the issue of print vs. digital phone directories, and have come out in force square on the side of the latter. The divide between the two will only continue to grow as more and more people and businesses push aside the old and embrace the new; online telephone print directories such as YPGG are indeed the wave of the future, here today.

 

An innovator in digital business information delivery, YellowPagesGoesGreen.org is a cutting-edge website that delivers over 28.5 million up-to-the-minute listings of businesses throughout the United States and Canada; users can quickly, easily, and conveniently access the information they need to find the goods and services that they want.

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