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View Full Version : Say Adieu to the Minitel - Minitel Service Ended Today in France


JSpira
06-30-2012, 07:00 PM
If you wanted to check weather, a phone number, stocks, or make travel reservations online in 1982 - and happened to be in France - you could have. In fact, I remember when I was young using Minitel terminals to get all kinds of information.

Today, the Minitel system went dark. It was no match for the Internet.

Adieu! France’s Minitel Goes Dark (http://www.frequentbusinesstraveler.com/2012/06/adieu-frances-minitel-goes-dark/)

France’s Minitel service ended its 34-year run today. Introduced in the pre-World Wide Web age, the Minitel presaged many services that eventually arrived via the Internet including online banking, travel reservations, and ******
At its height in the 1990s, there were nine million terminals in use in France, serving roughly 25 million people (the population of France, at that time, was 60 million). As the service was shut down today, France …
Article continues here (http://www.frequentbusinesstraveler.com/2012/06/adieu-frances-minitel-goes-dark/)

http://www.frequentbusinesstraveler.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/Minitel-2-300x183.jpg

b-y
07-01-2012, 05:08 PM
This was another idiosyncratic French idea...justify needed improvements to the telecom network with a stripped-down data network and made-in-France CPE. I was working as an as advisor to NTIA and had to help respond to the pressure that the US would be left hopelessly behind if we didn't do something similar in teletext or videotext. After a few years, the usage of "pink Minitel" (I.e. mild pornography) dwarfed all the news and information services.

I still assign parts of Nora and Minc's 1978 report to France's then-president, Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, The Computerization of Society, to my students.