Please Leave A Message At The Tone, Unless You’re Caller Number Four

I have a question.

The other day, my dad called me. While we were talking, he said that he had been trying to call my sister but her voicemail was full and he couldn’t leave a message. I texted her to let her know, and when she wrote back, I was floored.

“I know it’s full,” she said. “It only holds three messages. I had something saved and then two people called me close together.”

Um…what? A voicemail box that only holds three messages including saves? Somebody managed to build that and sell it to companies while keeping a straight face? I’m sure the companies had to be in on the joke and bought in because they know they can get a segment of the customer base to pay for literally anything no matter how stupid and for all I know it was one of those very companies that commissioned the thing, but still, this is just…wow.

Bell’s call Answer could hold 25 messages in the 1990s. Those old digital answering machines could generally hold at least ten. Hell, the ancient cassette using ones could hold lord knows how many depending on the length of the tape you put in and how long you set the message length. But now, in 2016, when digital storage is so cheap that companies like Apple are giving it away for basically nothing, at least one of our country’s largest cell phone providers has deployed something with the ability to hold three whole messages? And worse yet, they’re making people pay for it?

I don’t know what sort of plan my sister is on, but if I ever found out I was being charged honest to god Canadian currency for the privilege of using a mailbox that small, I’d be on the phone demanding that *they* pay *me* monthly to keep using it. Seriously, why the hell even bother to have voicemail at that point?

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