telephone calls

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Leaked Taylor Swift Call Was a Calculated Move

TMZ finds secret recording didn't break the law

(Newser) - Kim Kardashian didn't just reignite the feud between Kanye West and Taylor Swift when she leaked a phone conversation between the pair on Sunday. As Vulture reports, she was also dangerously close to breaking recording laws—though TMZ reports Kardashian is actually in the clear. While plenty of states... More »

TV Producer: Orlando Gunman Called Me

'I will never forget the words he said to me'

(Newser) - Orlando shooter Omar Mateen not only called police during the massacre at Pulse nightclub but also, apparently, a TV station. News 13 producer Matthew Gentili says he was handling the phones just 2 miles from the club around 2:45am Sunday as viewers called in to ask about the shooting... More »

This Company Will Break Up With Your Partner for $10

The Breakup Shop thinks 'everyone deserves to be single'

(Newser) - There is now a service for everything—and yes, that extends to the very personal act of breaking up with your significant other. Founded by two brothers in Canada who love their idea enough to market it but not enough to give their full names, The Breakup Shop will send... More »

FCC Votes to Stop Phone Providers From Gouging Inmates

'The most egregious case of market failure I have ever seen'

(Newser) - Phone calls can cost inmates and their families up to $14 a minute, NBC News reports. But that changed Thursday when the FCC voted 3-2 to cap the rates and fees phone providers can charge for service in US prisons and jails, according to the Huffington Post . "Voting to... More »

Woman Turns Tables on Bizarro Telemarketer

Things take crazy turn when Jessica Gottlieb tells 'Mark' she's recording call

(Newser) - If you ever get a call from a telemarketer named Mark from Chatsworth, you should a) probably not tell him you're recording your conversation, and b) maybe just hang up altogether. Unless you want pure YouTube gold, which is what happened when Los Angeles blogger Jessica Gottlieb reveals to... More »

US Tracked Billions of Calls Long Before 9/11

USA Today: DEA, Justice Department collected data for 20 years

(Newser) - Edward Snowden's revelations about the NSA and its surveillance tactics may have riled people up, but the agency apparently took its cue from two other government departments: the DEA and the DoJ. For almost 10 years before 9/11 took place, the agencies secretly kept records of billions of international... More »

Here's How to Make Being on Hold Less Infuriating

Companies should play pop tunes, not elevator music: study

(Newser) - No one likes being on hold, and the elevator music that typically plays while you cool your heels doesn't enhance the experience. Fortunately, a new study is suggesting a solution, Time reports: Just change the music. We're already conditioned to find elevator music annoying, researcher Karen Niven says.... More »

'I'm Afraid,' Says American Jailed in Yemen

Sharif Mobley, once suspected of al-Qaeda ties, makes rare call home in plea

(Newser) - The confusing story of Sharif Mobley just took a desperate-sounding turn. The 31-year-old father of three, held prisoner in Yemen since 2010, placed a "rare call" to his lawyers this week from what he said was a Sanaa military base, and things don't sound good, the Intercept reports.... More »

Why One Church Works Entirely by Phone

LDS members in rural Alaska prefer to call

(Newser) - Rural Alaskans who'd like to attend church without navigating miles of frozen road have found a workaround: the telephone. An Alaskan branch of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is devoted entirely to members who call in, the Alaska Dispatch News reports. "It's what you... More »

Turns Out That Reagan Liked to Tape Calls, Too

Conversations with Thatcher, Hafez al-Assad among those released

(Newser) - After that whole Richard Nixon thing , one might think American presidents would think twice about taping conversations, but we now have one more from the Gipper: Recordings of conversations between former President Reagan and world leaders including Margaret Thatcher and Bashar al-Assad's father have finally been released, having been... More »

Jilted Boyfriend Called, Texted His Ex 21K Times

Frenchman gets 4 months, $1.3K fine

(Newser) - A Frenchman has paid the price for texting and calling his ex-girlfriend 21,807 times over a 10-month stretch, France24 reports. The 33-year-old was sentenced to four months in jail and told to pay a roughly $1,300 fine. He admitted in court that he was trying to reach her... More »

New App Keeps Kids From Ignoring Mom's Phone Calls

Frustrated mom invents Ignore No More app for Android

(Newser) - Watch out, kids: When her teens ignored her calls checking up on their safety, mom Sharon Standifird "literally just started researching how to develop an app" that would paralyze their phones until they called her back, she tells CBS New York ; thus, Ignore No More was born. The Android-exclusive... More »

NSA 'Time Machine' Can Record All Calls in a Nation

It can also replay the voices at any time within 30 days

(Newser) - The Washington Post has a new NSA scoop courtesy of Edward Snowden that is only going to heighten the Big Brother fears. It seems the agency has a program called MYSTIC that can record every phone call in a foreign country—and this isn't metadata, it's actual voice... More »

Man Live-Tweets as Ex-NSA Boss Bashes Obama

Michael Hayden's interview overheard on train

(Newser) - Let this one sink in, America: The guy who used to run the National Security Agency is such a careful, clever operative that he gives his secret phone conversations in public. Michael Hayden gave an "on background" interview yesterday while riding the train from New York to Washington, DC,... More »

Surprised Strangers Hear This on Phone: 'It's the Pope'

Francis placing personal calls to some who write him

(Newser) - A word of warning to those who write personal notes to Pope Francis: He might just call you back. Francis has charmed the masses with his informal style, simplicity, and sense of humor—and a handful of strangers have gotten the treatment up close, receiving papal phone calls out of... More »

Tapes Reveal Zimmerman Gloating About Donations

He and his wife plot about how to stash cash

(Newser) - Prosecutors release the tapes of six phone conversations George Zimmerman had with his wife while in jail, in which they conspire over how to hide the mountains of cash supporters sent in for his defense. Prosecutors say the couple had access to at least $130,000, the Orlando Sentinel reports.... More »

Good-Bye, Phone Call: Texts Rule Teen Communication

Text messages rising as phone calls fall

(Newser) - So much for the olden days of talking on the phone for hours: Texting is now the "dominant daily mode of communication" for teens, according to the results of a recent Pew Research Center survey. The median number of texts per day is now 60 for teen users, up... More »

Father, Son Arrested for Harassing Palins: FBI

Made 'disturbing' phone calls despite restraining order

(Newser) - A father and son have been arrested on charges of harassing the Palin family by phone, an FBI agent tells Reuters . Craig Christy, 47, and Shawn Christy, 19, were hit with a federal indictment on Wednesday over calls made from Aug. 1 to Aug. 9—after Sarah Palin had already... More »

Why I Love My Land Line

Because I can actually talk on it

(Newser) - That smartphone can text, email, navigate, surf, organize, amuse, and waste time indefinitely. But the one thing it sucks at? Actual phone calls, writes Stephen Randall in an LA Times requiem for the land line, which "sits like a weird dusty antique on my desk. It won't let me... More »

Phone Numbers Will Be Gone in 5 Years

Adding voice to social networks will make them obsolete

(Newser) - Nikhyl Singhal is certain he'll never have to remember his grandkids' phone numbers—because the whole concept of those 10-digit numbers will be long gone by then. In fact, "it may not even take 5 years for the phone service, as we know it, to meet its demise,"... More »

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