Spencer Potter is ready to say goodbye to (201) 867-5309. Photo from the New York Times.
As Tommy Tutone famously sang in 1982: "Jenny, don't change your number, 867-5309." His goal is "at least $40,000."
But that's precisely what Spencer Potter, the New Jersey area owner of that phone number, is trying to do. Potter, 28, got the number for free five years ago when he set up a phone line for his DJ business, but now he wants to sell it to the highest bidder on eBay. His goal is "at least $40,000."
Of course, there must be many other owners of this phone number throughout the country, but none of them ever had the bright idea to try to sell it to '80s fanatics with leg warmers, hairspray and money to spend. Potter said: "This is really, in my opinion, one of the last cultural remnants of the '80s pop culture era ... other than the mullet."
Whether it's "one of the last remnants" is debatable, but people still tend to think owning the number would be pretty valuable. Check out the eBay ad:
You may notice that Potter is selling his DJ business in addition to the phone number. That's just to get around telephone company rules against selling numbers. Verizon has given him the green light to transfer it with the sale of his business, even though a similar attempt made in 2004 by the 212 area code owner of the number was thwarted.
Potter advertises on eBay that the call receives between "8,000 and 10,000 calls per year!!" Why anyone would want to increase the number of calls they get from unknown individuals - especially now that telemarketers have their hands on cell phone numbers - remains a mystery.
At the time this article was written, the bid was $5,601. Bidding will end on Monday, February 9, 2009.