Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"I've been very obsessive about writing science fiction for far too many years. Anyone with an ounce of sense would have given up years ago."
- Charles Stross

Free Telephone Call  
  All telephone calls are free - in exchange for short commercials.  

In the frenetic future envisioned forty years ago by Ballard, nobody paid for phone service. That's because it was already paid for - by advertisers.

Before Judith could reply the telephone rang. Franklin lifted the kitchen receiver, listened to the gabble of noise that poured from it. At first he wondered whether this was some offbeat prestige commercial, then realized it was Hathaway in a manic swing.

"Hathaway!" he shouted back. "Relax, man! What's the matter now?"

"--Doctor, -you'll have to believe me this time. I tell you I got on to one of the islands with a stroboscope, they've got hundreds of high speed shutters blasting away like machine guns straight into people's faces and they can't see a thing, it's fantastic! The next big campaign's going to be cars and TV sets; they're trying to swing a two month model change--can you imagine it, Doctor, a new car every two months? God Almighty, it's just-"

Franklin waited impatiently as the five-second commercial break cut in (all telephone calls were free, the length of the commercial extending with range-for long-distance calls the ratio of commercial to conversation was as high as 10: 1, the participants desperately trying to get a word in edgeways to the interminable interruptions), but just before it ended he abruptly put the telephone down, then removed the receiver from the cradle.

From The Subliminal Man, by J.G. Ballard.
Published by Not Known in 1963
Additional resources -

Some readers may recall the attempt to provide free computers and internet service, in exchange for a advertisements that were constantly shown on the screen.

In 2006, Virgin Mobile USA customers were able to earn up to seventy-five minutes of free airtime in exchange for reading text message ads on their phones. (See Would you watch ads just to talk for free? for details.)

Comment/Join this discussion ( 0 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Subliminal Man
  More Ideas and Technology by J.G. Ballard
  Tech news articles related to The Subliminal Man
  Tech news articles related to works by J.G. Ballard

Free Telephone Call-related news articles:
  - Advertising-Funded Cellphone Content
  - Nexus One Not Ballardian Free Ad Phone
  - Targeted Audio Ads On Your Cell Phone
  - Ad-Supported Free Telephone Calls
  - Google Patents 'Spy In Your Pocket' Smartphone

Articles related to Communication
BloxVox Mutes Cellphone Convos
Sonitus Audio Interface Positioned Beyond The Noise
FlexPai Foldable Phone By Royole
BrainNet Social Network Of Brains

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

More News

'Metallic Wood' Strong Like Titanium, Floats In Water
'A metal... light as cork and stronger than steel...'

Seabreacher, H.G. Winter's 1939 Torpoon
'Ken lay full-length in the padded body compartment, his feet resting on the controlling bars of the directional planes, hands on the torpoon's engine levers.'

Abundant Robotics Autonomous Apple Harvester Robot
'... little machines, that went from plant to plant... cutting off the ripe fruit.'

Charging An Electric Car In 2019 (Video), 1912 (Photo) And 1894 (Fiction)
'Recharge the batteries... in almost every town and village...'

Japan Uses Explosives On Asteroid
'...a tiny, rocket-powered projectile, drove towards the mysterious bulk. It hit, exploding into a cloud of incandescent vapour.'

Get Your Speeder Flying Motorcycle From Jetpack Aviation
'The flycycles were miracles of compact design.'

FLIR Black Hornet 3 Palm-sized Drone
These drones can provide situational awareness beyond visual line-of-sight capability.

Dockworkers Protest Driverless Trucks
'It resembled conventional human-operated transportation vehicles, but with one exception -- there was no driver's cabin.'

Flying Car Concept By Kash Sirinanda
'Each one consists of a hub with many tiny spokes... On the end is a squat foot, rubber tread on the bottom...'

Unfurl The Future! Huawei Mate X versus Galaxy Fold
'A paper thin polycarbon screen unfurled silently from the top of the unit and immediately grew rigid.'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.