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Tuesday, 24 Oct 2017
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Yellow Pages Short History

As soon as Alexander Graham Bell discover the telephone and properly made it working, it automatically spread worldwide. At those days the telephone ‘revolution’ made its appearance, there were many people who had a private telephone line therefore, this make the officials to puplish a small white card with the names of the 50 subscribers, where the headings were divided into four smaller sections of service listing, miscellaneous, professional and residential telephones. Therefore the publishing of the first ‘telephone book’ directory was created. However, within the early telephone directories, telephone numbers were not listed as connections between callers were made by the operators and only the name of the receiver caller was needed. Therefore, in the telephone books then only names were included.

During 1886, Reuben H. Donnelley created the first classified telephone directory advertising, and it was the starting point for the creation of an entire well-known industry called ‘Yellow Pages’. Still now, no one knows for sure the actual reason why these pages were turned to be yellow, as they did not start that way. An old legend suggests that once they run out of white paper in 1883 and instead waiting for few weeks for a new shipment, they used yellow paper. Afterwards a research was followed showing that readers found it easier to read that type of black ink on a yellow page rather that white.  However, there is not an official statement about the reason behind the yellow paper.

For many years, Yellow Pages were an exclusive monopoly of the RH Donnelley Company and the telephone companies.  Soon the deregulation and publishers of Yellow Pages found out that selling a second or third book of yellow ads was very profitable. Now, the industry of the Yellow Pages annually accounts more than $14 billion in advertising sales.

 

 

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