Hold The Phone It's A Telecom Marketing Free For All

The opening of local service will bring a flood of sales pitches

Brace yourself. If you're fed up with phone company ads, never want to hear another pin drop, think you'll yank the thing out of the wall if you get one more call from a long-distance telemarketer during dinner--you ain't seen nothing yet. Congress' Feb. 1 passage of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 is about to unleash a torrent of marketing campaigns importuning you to change something you probably never thought much about before: local phone service.

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