Scoble gives out his phone number on his blog, but maybe you aren't willing to start racking up long distance minutes from around the world. Step in NetZero! I honestly didn't think this company was still around as all I remember of them is their ads for Dial-up internet (which I haven't used for over a decade).

Skype has taken the first plunge by offering free phone calls from your computer to land lines, but they still charge for a incoming number with voicemail. Looks like NetZero is trying to grab this segment before Skype does. Here's how the service works:

  1. Register at the PrivatePhone website
  2. Get your own phone number for incoming voicemail
  3. Select your requested Area Code and City
  4. Accept your new phone number (hint, you can reset the cities back and forth to get new options for numbers if you don't like the one offered on your first attempt).
  5. Setup your voice mailbox greeting
  6. Post your private phone number to your blog
  7. Configure your profile to send SMS messages to your real phone when you get a voicemail
  8. Listen to the messages either by calling your voicemail account or logging on to the NetZero website.
  9. Oh, as a side note you get an email account with them as well. Not that you probably don't already have more free email accounts than you can count on your hand...

I'm not sure how they are going to make any money on this (outside of the plethora of ads that are on their site when you listen to your messages via the web) but it's free so I'll take it.

Shoot me a voice mail when you get a chance. My private phone number is (425) 654-0324. Let's see if you all can fill up my voice mailbox...

-Joe