Telecom Companies and the Hidden Segmentation of Urban Space: Public Payphones in 2015 NYC

Copy the text below to embed this resource

Main contributor
Elijah Beaton
In 2012, before beginning an overhaul of its public communications service that produced LinkNYC, the City of New York relied on 13 telecom companies to provide service to its network of public payphones. Built on the remains of Bell Telephone infrastructure, the telecoms were differentiated only by their branding. From 2000-2014, telecom companies in New York maintained a geographic monopoly, with specific areas of the city designated as certain corporate territories. Using an unique archived GIS dataset from 2012, this project examines how telecom companies approached New York City as a market space, defining the territories between each phones as the domain of a particular telecom company. Analyzing these market territories within the space of the city will show the ways that urban space is understood, segmented, and produced by assemblages of capital. Through multiple maps of New York City telecom territories, this project reveals the complex structure of public utilities that undergirds everyday objects like a payphone. 
IDAH; spring symposium; digital humanities; New York City; payphones
IDAH Spring Symposium
Institute for Digital Arts and Humanities
Rights Statement
In Copyright
Related Item
Presentation Slide 
Presentation given as a part of IDAH's 2023 Spring Symposium. 

Access Restrictions

This item is accessible by: the public.