A recent blurb on toll-free 800 numbers served well to alert readers to the transition from 800 to 888 toll-free numbers. But the piece ("800 numbers: Get 'em while you can," Up Front, July 3) may have left your readers with too bleak a picture of what's going on. There are numbers available for people who want them: almost 30,000 new toll-free numbers each week. The phone companies have them, and your readers can get them. Our action [to ration numbers] merely restored the industry to its planned usage rate and stopped the "run on the bank." The FCC, further, is not planning to tell the industry to "take back" anyone's 800 number. We are investigating allegations that some carriers are "warehousing" numbers for which they have no customers. That's not fair.
Kathleen M.H. Wallman
Chief, Common Carrier Bureau
Federal Communications Commission