Okay, okay -- landlines are still useful. But rapidly growing, they are not
. That said, Verizon
is caving to congressional pressure in a relatively minor way, announcing that it'll be banning certain third-party charges on landline bills. In political circles, the process is known as "cramming," where customers (oftentimes unknowingly) submit their number to certain third-party add-ons that have generated some $10 billion in revenue over the past five years. Sen. Jay Rockefeller from West Virginia is applauding the move, and also encouraging Congress to make this commonplace across all carriers. Curiously, there's no mention of mobile blocking, where consumers are regularly duped into subscribing to recurring fees via text-based competitions and contests. Perhaps when we've all moved on to telepathy
, the feds can get right on that.
*Verizon has acquired AOL, Engadget's parent company. However, Engadget maintains full editorial control, and Verizon will have to pry it from our cold, dead hands.