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Outsourcing: the dating game: as many organizations have learned, choosing to outsource your IT infrastructure to a hosting partner is a complex task that is really more a journey than a destination. Two customers talk about how they selected a provider and how relationships developIn February we invited industry leaders to participate in a roundtable discussion on outsourcing Internet infrastructure and the

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Talk Of The Broadband Economy - One2One Match

Talk Of The Broadband Economy - One2One MatchDouble-blind dates

Of all the ways to communicate with prospective paramours in the digital age, a Denver-based online dating service recently deployed one of the most innovative yet: a real live phone call. You remember - the kind where one person speaks and the other listens, and vice versa.

Late last year, One2One Match introduced The Pickup Line, a service that allows members to contact each other via phone without either party knowing the other's phone number. The "double-blind" call, as service provider CallMe has dubbed the technology, is designed to ease the introduction process and prevent members from learning too much about each other too soon. The service works thusly:


Members sign up by providing a list of phone numbers where they can be contacted and at what hours they're willing to accept calls.


One member clicks on another's "call" button, which initiates an outbound call from CallMe's server.


If the call occurs during a time when the called member is willing to accept calls, the server then initiates another outbound call to the calling party. If not, the calling party gets a message saying the called party is not accepting calls.


If the called member answers, CallMe's server then provides a short verbal introduction and connects the two outbound calls.

One2One Match also offers other forms of anonymous communication including double-blind e-mail and instant messaging. But Mark Erickson, president and CIO of One2One Match, said voice is a better fit for many of its subscribers.

"Everybody is comfortable with the telephone," Erickson said. "A significant percentage of our users are an older demographic and they may not be comfortable with instant messaging. We think a significant number of our members will jump right from e-mail to the phone. Plus there really is no substitute for getting on the phone. You can detect so many things through the sound of someone's voice."

Pickup Line users were unavailable for comment - funny, but no one wanted to accept a call from a married telecom editor. - Vince Vittore

Clash of interest

Over two decades before accounting scandals rocked firms like WorldCom and Adelphia, punk band The Clash released the album "Sandinista!," with frontman Joe Strummer penning these lyrics for the song "Midnight Log":

"Cooking up the books/A respected occupation/The anchor and foundation/Of the multi-corporations/They don't believe in crime/They know that it exists/To understand what's right and wrong/The lawyers work in shifts..."

Strummer died Dec. 22, 2002. He was 50 years old.