Ma Bell


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Ma Bell

A colloquial term for AT&T prior to the 1980s. It was used to refer to the fact that AT&T had total or near total monopoly over the provision of telephone service in most areas of the United States. After 1984, Ma Bell was forcibly broken up into several "baby Bells."
References in periodicals archive ?
Ma Bell was big in New York City at that time and the thought of being so inclusive was invigorating to me.
I have a Pinterest Board called Ma Bell's Medicine Show For Raising Morale (pinterest.com/drmary annbell/ma-bell-s-medicine-show-for-raising-morale).
Exploding the Phone: The Untold Story of the Teenagers and Outlaws Who Hacked Ma Bell provides a lively survey of the tinkerers and pranksters who turned AT&T's telephone system into a joke.
I think she thought her friend couldn't hear it over the phone so she turned it up loud enough for her to hear it all the way to Topeka without the aid of Ma Bell!
However, the question is what the outcome will be: Will Google be broken up as Ma Bell was in the 1980s, will it continue to remain as is, or something in between?
Ma Bell once gave us the option of ending a call, shall we say, emphatically.
"On behalf of our customers, our industry and our country, Sprint will fight this attempt by AT&T to undo the progress of the past 25 years and create a new Ma Bell duopoly," McCann's statement said.
In a particularly personal note, Rosalyn Becker writes that she "took tranquilizers and sleeping pills to force myself to work a job I hated--telephone operator for Ma Bell." And Doug Draime tells of us his lifelong struggle to be a poet, giving up, starting over, giving up again, starting over again.
I say "Wow" for Bob Adelmann's article entitled "The Breakup of Ma Bell" (May 24 issue).
Ma Bell is beginning to look like Ma Wi-Fi as the company expands its Wi-Fi efforts beyond a Wi-Fi test site in Times Square.
Altria (Philip Morris to traders of my vintage, symbol MO) offers 6.5 per cent as a dividend, as does Telephone (the late Ma Bell).