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Vonage VoIP Forum Digest - June 23, 2005

Vonage VoIP Forum Digest

June 23, 2005

By Daniel Connor

Welcome to today's edition of the Vonage Voip Forum Digest.

Today, we'll go to an authoritative source to tell you everything you've always wanted to know about those funny Vonage TV Commercials. OK, OK, almost everything you wanted to know about the "People do stupid things" ads. We'll read an in-depth interview in which the guy who runs Vonage opens up and relates his thoughts to another Voip pioneer. We'll go through a new Vonage Voip Forum thread discussing what to do if it appears that your phone jacks no longer work with your Vonage connection. Finally, we'll use a thread advising how to see your computer setup on your Local Area Network to illustrate how you can use some of the Vonage Voip Forum's advanced but easy reply tools to post an answer that bears out the old saying, "a picture is worth a thousand words."

In The Headlines

The Inside Scoop About Those Vonage Ads

The Wall Street Journal must be reading us. We've had threads asking about whether those "people do stupid things" ads are real. Yesterday, weeks after you readers started discussing whether or not those hilarious ads are real, the WSJ had an article in which reader (and, may I add, fellow Connecticut resident) Lynne Burgess asked whether or not the various "accidents" that happen in these "People do stupid things" ads are real. Accidents such as a skier jumping off a roof on to a pickup truck, a snowmobiler landing where it really hurts (OK, not where it really, really hurts), or a very young but budding baseball slugger taking out a sliding door glass window when a bat slips out of his hand.

The Wall Street Journal's Brian Steinberg explains that the ads are made from reels that are real. Steinberg writes that "a Vonage spokesman tells us that the company 'receives reels of footage from its advertising agency (Havas's) Arnold Worldwide Partners for review from a variety of sources.'" The spokesman adds that these spots are "not staged."

So how could they be. The truth is always stranger than fiction, and as folks who pay through the nose for phone service and families of runaway brides know only too painfully -sometimes people really do, do "stupid things." So, I stand by my comments: Oh, I am CERTAIN it is real. That is just one crazy rocket!

In Lengthy Interview, Vonage CEO Talks About Everything From Blocked Ports to Unblocked E911

In the just-posted June issue of Von Magazine (, Vonage CEO Jeffrey Citron sits down for a chat with Voip pioneer Jeff Pulver. (Pulver, incidentally, participated in the initial financial funding of the company that became Vonage, but has no financial interest in Vonage).

This is an interesting conversation, for sure. In response to Pulver's questions, Citron gives his frank views on how he has designed the Vonage service to be plug-and-play; is making its way from early adopters to mainstream consumers; why Vonage will continue to actively pursue distribution partnerships with retailers; how Vonage differs from services like Skype; why he thinks more incumbent phone service providers will try to block Vonage access; the dangers of too much major phone company consolidation, and what he sees as a challenging but clear path in Vonage's progress to make E911 happen without unanticipated glitches or hurdles.

It would be great if technology never presented us with hurdles or glitches, but that's tech, and that's life. While we can't really help you with the non-tech part of life's glitches, our nearly 13,000 members are very active in helping with the tech part. Especially, of course, the part of technology that involves configuring and using your Vonage service.

Speaking of:

On The Vonage Voip Forum

On a 10-day old but very popular Vonage Voip Forum thread called phone jacks no longer work with Vonage, Vonage Forum Member phatjd started the discussion with the lament that after unplugging the cables going into his telecom box and running the phone cable from the router to a phone jack, he no longer can receive incoming calls or even hear a dial tone. He thinks he has lost connectivity in his wall jacks, and wants to know why. Forum posters suggested everything from a complete color-wire to position inspection of where each wire is connected, to calling an exterminator to check for rodents who may have chewed on the wires. One of the latest responses is from linnym, who suggests a surge or a spike as a possible cause. "Try to connect the wires to (just wires) by using watertight snap-connectors and eliminating the surge protection."

On Sunday, Vonage Forum Member mjphal started a thread entitled See Computer on LAN. The problem, apparently, is that when he connects his four computers to and from his Vonage-supplied Linksys router and DSL router, all computers on his Local Area Network can access the Internet but can't all see each other. Some Forum members seemed to imply that mjphal simplify his setup. But it was Forum Member kendolin's post that really got us to thinking. Not only did kendolin take the time to describe a setup that worked for him and just might do the same for mjphal, but he took several screen shots of the process he used to configure his PCs to work with Vonage service, as well as communicate with other computers on his network.

Our Forum tools make it easy for you to explain processes or illustrate problems by giving you the ability to link to a variety of media. You will need to upload the media to a web server (most everyone has free web server space included in their broadband account). The formats that we support are: Real Audio, Streaming, Flash, Windows Media, all images and web pages. We also have lots of other new formatting tools. Play around with them in your posts, it makes for great visuals!

That's what's hot about Vonage today. Check with us tomorrow for the next edition of the Vonage Voip Forum Digest!!

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