Leggo l’introduzione e scopro una citazione che sembra preistoria: lo squillino.
Throughout the 1990s and early 2000s, it was common for Italian high schoolers to have cell phones, but using them was costly: There were no “unlimited” text, voice, and data plans. It was too expensive to send a casual text: “I miss you.” To get around the high cost of using a mobile phone, they used ringing, in which one person would call a boyfriend, girlfriend, or close friend and hang up after a single ring. The unanswered call was free and communicated a clear message. Raffaele noted that the most common sentiment a ring would convey is, “Hey, I’m thinking about you!” Seeing a friend’s or a lover’s name on the caller ID, it was the other person’s job to call back and leave a single ring as quickly as possible.1 There were no words, pictures, videos, or “likes” with these messages; instead, time was the message. These rings echo experiences shared by anyone who has used mobile media to find and maintain a love interest: When it comes to sending messages with the person we love, waiting itself bears meaning.