Today’s Roundup of Dinosaur Technology

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.


Are telephone answering machines dinosaurs? Matt Yglesias says yes. I say no. Believe it or not, lots of people still make and receive phone calls! And not everyone has signed up for their phone company’s voice mail service. But they’d still like to know when someone has called and would like them to call back. Thus, the answering machine. They’re mostly built into phones these days rather than sold as standalone devices, but there are still lots of them out there.

In a separate vein, Dave Weigel questions the utility of morning roundup posts:

It’s 2013 A.D. and I’m no longer convinced that early-morning round-up posts are a good use of time. So this will be the last one — again, barring some massive pressure campaign, letters from readers piling up like letters to Santa in Miracle on 34th Street.

For what it’s worth, my take on this has always been simple. Roundup posts with more than four or five entries are a waste of time. You’re basically signaling me that this is just a dump of everything you’ve read this morning, so I’m going to skip it. But a roundup with three or four or maybe five items signals something different. It tells me that this is actually a carefully pruned list of things you truly found interesting and think I might be interested in too. Those kinds of roundup posts I frequently find worthwhile.

Sadly, nearly all roundup posts are the former type.

GREAT JOURNALISM, SLOW FUNDRAISING

Our team has been on fire lately—publishing sweeping, one-of-a-kind investigations, ambitious, groundbreaking projects, and even releasing “the holy shit documentary of the year.” And that’s on top of protecting free and fair elections and standing up to bullies and BS when others in the media don’t.

Yet, we just came up pretty short on our first big fundraising campaign since Mother Jones and the Center for Investigative Reporting joined forces.

So, two things:

1) If you value the journalism we do but haven’t pitched in over the last few months, please consider doing so now—we urgently need a lot of help to make up for lost ground.

2) If you’re not ready to donate but you’re interested enough in our work to be reading this, please consider signing up for our free Mother Jones Daily newsletter to get to know us and our reporting better. Maybe once you do, you’ll see it’s something worth supporting.

payment methods

GREAT JOURNALISM, SLOW FUNDRAISING

Our team has been on fire lately—publishing sweeping, one-of-a-kind investigations, ambitious, groundbreaking projects, and even releasing “the holy shit documentary of the year.” And that’s on top of protecting free and fair elections and standing up to bullies and BS when others in the media don’t.

Yet, we just came up pretty short on our first big fundraising campaign since Mother Jones and the Center for Investigative Reporting joined forces.

So, two things:

1) If you value the journalism we do but haven’t pitched in over the last few months, please consider doing so now—we urgently need a lot of help to make up for lost ground.

2) If you’re not ready to donate but you’re interested enough in our work to be reading this, please consider signing up for our free Mother Jones Daily newsletter to get to know us and our reporting better. Maybe once you do, you’ll see it’s something worth supporting.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate