Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Early Telephone Etiquette

"Telephone etiquette prescribes that the person making a telephone call should be the one to terminate the conversation."

People are gradually being educated up to the etiquette of the telephone. When the bicycle and the automobile first made their appearances, people did not know how to receive them. They did not know what rights of way to assign to them on the public streets. But as the public became accustomed to these modern improvements in locomotion, we learned the proper way to treat them. So it will be with the telephone.

The time will come when a patron will not think of making a poor telephone girl's life miserable because she happens to make a mistake in a switch. He will treat her as politely as he would a girl who serves him in a store. In Chicago we make 600,000 switches in a day and only about 500 mistakes are made. Considering the vast number of switches that are made I think that it is marvelous that so few mistakes are made. The record is about as near perfection as man can make it. – John Sabin, quoted in the San Francisco Call, 1901

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the
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