Monday, April 28, 2008

Uncle Sam Wants You to Text

It seems like texting your vote has become quite commonplace with television shows, such as American Idol. When you see your favorite Idol on the screen, you open up your phone, text “7” to “1234” and your vote is tallied. Simple, right?

What if the same concept was used for voting in the Presidential Elections? According to Eric Zeman’s article, “People Would Use Cell Phones to Vote For President If They Could” on Information Week’s OvertheAir Blog, a poll taken by Samsung proved this idea to be very popular among its participants.

While I see this as an easy solution for voters who can’t make it to the polls on time (let’s face it, many of us have a long commute these days), I just don’t see it working. There are several sections on the ballot in which the citizens vote for (state, county, city, ect.) and text messaging would either overlook these sections or cause a huge mess. There are several other questions that lead me to believe text-voting for the Presidential Election is not a fool proof plan. How would they tally these votes? Also, how would they identify that citizen?

This concept seems like a lot of work and if it were to appear in our lives, it wouldn’t be for several years. If it did exist, I don’t think I’d do it. I prefer to go inside a booth, review my choices and vote, knowing that I did my job as a citizen of this country.

What do you think about voting for President via text message? Would you do it? Do you think it will work?

Kimberly Salesky
Marketing Assistant

Friday, April 11, 2008

Your Cell Phone Could Be a Real Lifesaver

When the horrific events of September 11th unfolded, we found ourselves distraught, confused and torn as a nation. Many of us heard the terrible news a few hours after it had happened. While we were lucky to have countless heroes to aid our country during that time of crisis, it was unfortunate we were not alerted sooner. Imagine if there was an alert system that had been established that could have been transmitted immediately and possibly protected more lives.

Fortunately, an alert system has been created and recently brought to our attention. On Wednesday April 9th, 2008, the FCC announced that a nationwide alert system will be available to cell phone users. Major cell phone carriers, such as AT&T, will be offering customers these national alerts via text message.

The alerts include:

-Disasters that could endanger the safety and health of Americans (i.e. terrorist attacks);
-Natural threats, such as a hurricane or tornado;
-Amber alerts.

Soon your cell phone could be a hero, whether it saves your life or the life of another. As many of us take our cell phones practically everywhere we go, this alert system will keep us up-to-date on crucial events taking place in our country. This feature could even potentially prevent the jeopardizing of lives as well as preparing us for the worst in advance.

Imagine the possibilities. You’re alone in the woods—no radio, no television—and you receive a text message stating that we’re under a “Severe Risk” for terrorist attack. The immediacy this text message would give you in such a situation will prime you to find a safe haven.

I know I will be subscribing to this feature—I will be prepared and could even spread the word to others who may not be aware of any potential/current disasters. If we all subscribe to this feature and “alert” one another as well, perhaps we could all help save a life. Perhaps it will help us unite as a nation during times of crisis.

What do you think about this national alert system? Do you think it will make a difference? Are you thinking about adding it to your current cell phone plan?

Kimberly Salesky
Marketing Assistant


1. “Cell phone alert system proposed”, 9 April 2008.

2. “Emergency Alerts Via Cell Phones Move Ahead” Chloe Albanesius, 10 April 2008.

3. "Coming To Your Cell Phone: Text Messages From Uncle Sam" Eric Zeman Information Week: Over the Air, 10 April 2008.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Help Our Environment and Community

While April showers bring May flowers, the Car-Tel recycling project promotes a better environment. We have launched our cell phone recycling project, Project P.H.O.N.E. (Protecting the Health of Our Natural Environment) and hope to see many of your old cell phones enter our recycling bins.

Why? Cell phone recycling is a growing concern, which I addressed in a previous blog entry, “Is Your Old Cell Phone Eco-Friendly?”. Did you know that the cadmium from a single cell phone battery can contaminate up to 600,000 gallons of water? This startling statistic from EnviroSmart is just a fraction of this issue. There is something you can do to help reduce this statistic and many others. Bring your old cell phones and accessories to any of our seven convenient locations and just drop them in the recycling bins inside. Easy, right? Not to mention you won’t have to worry about all those old phones lying around the house anymore.

Project P.H.O.N.E. not only supports a healthier environment for everyone, but also helps contribute to the community. For every phone or accessory we receive, we will donate $1 toward helping these charities:

-The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
-Earth Island Institute
-Habitat for Humanity
-Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund
-One Laptop Per Child
-Partners in Health

With such an easy and rewarding way to help your world, you can’t go wrong with Project P.H.O.N.E. at Car-Tel Communications. Help us spread the word by telling your friends and family. You can even email us about receiving posters and brochures to hang at your facilities, whether you’re a school, library, business, doctor’s office—anyone. For more information on Project P.H.O.N.E., visit our recycling page or email Together we can make a difference!

Don’t forget Earth Day is April 22nd—perfect for helping the environment and community by recycling those old phones!

Kimberly Salesky
Marketing Assistant