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About this video

Bonus Edition Introduction by George Kupczak of the AT&T Archives and History Center

A film about telephone etiquette, especially in the office. AT&T seemingly made a version of this film every decade - it was always a subject worth returning to - and this is the 1940s version. It profiles some "obviously poor habits" of both workers and switchboard operators, and illustrates examples of good telephone manners, circa 1946.

It does so through the tale of "Mr. Burton", a typical businessman, who runs into difficulties when he tries to telephone his office. He realizes that phone manners, courtesy, and best practices are missing in his organization, and that they could be costing him money. He stages a demonstration for his "workers" and we get to watch.

Telephone etiquette never grows old, but it does change over time. Lately, the use of cell phones to make calls - but more specifically for texting - are higher-profile subjects of etiquette discussion, especially in public places such as schools or theaters.

A Wilding Production

Footage courtesy of AT&T Archives and History Center, Warren, NJ


Release date: 08/30/2012





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