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ISE Columnist Sharon Vollman, Editorial Director

Wi-Fi Entitlement

Feb. 1, 2018
I’m sure you’ve never had to wait in a doctor’s office . . . or dentist’s office . . . or chiropractor’s office. I’ve had to wait just a few […]

I’m sure you’ve never had to wait in a doctor’s office . . . or dentist’s office . . . or chiropractor’s office. I’ve had to wait just a few times over the years. Therefore, I’ve employed a strategy to pass the time: work.

Yup. Bring that little laptop with me and wait time suddenly becomes bonus time to get a few pesky items off of my to-do list.

Until this last appointment. Why? Because, as the receptionist told me, "We don’t have Wi-Fi."


I saw employees working on a variety of connected devices, so clearly, they did have Wi-Fi. BUT, they were not going to share it. With me. Their patient/customer. Really?

In that moment, I became someone I didn’t recognize. My to-do list started ruling me and I wanted to say, "Uh, you’re going to make me wait 30 minutes to see the doc, but you’re not going to SHARE the Wi-Fi code — even though my payment at the time of services rendered is helping you pay your bill?"

I didn’t say that, of course. Instead, I swallowed hard and sat down next to the dated magazines and other resigned patients. And though I love my doctor, that Wi-Fi-less moment left a bad taste in my mouth.

My laptop remained impotent as I looked for something to do offline. So, while my bad attitude was telling me to go in search of a new doctor who would share his/her Wi-Fi with patients, I recalled the article "We WON’T Do Without", published in our November 2016 issue. (See a few stats from the article below.) To read the article, please visit

When I edited the piece, I thought it was ridiculous that some customers would bail on businesses if they did not offer connectivity. How entitled was that?

And now I had to look in the mirror. I was one of them. I wasn’t proud of it. But, I was pragmatic. There was only one way to get around any doctor’s Wi-Fi selfishness in the future: bring my own hot spot.

We WON’T Do Without
A Short Summary: Global Survey of Millennials Hint at Big Changes for Networks
Millennials, those born between 1981 and 2000, are quickly becoming a financial juggernaut. In stark counterpoint to the aging Baby Boomer generation, they have firmly asserted their influence as the emerging (and soon dominant) demographic for consumer spending in every major industry. Technologically fearless, cost-conscious, Internet-empowered, strongly opinionated, and hungry for transparent communications — theirs is truly a mobile lifestyle.

This ultra-tech-savvy generation views reliable ubiquitous Internet access as a given — so much so that they prioritize connectivity over nearly every other basic utiliy.

Millennials versus Baby Boomers’ utility preferences.

Follow Sharon on Twitter (@svollman) and LinkedIn (@SharonVollman) for further conversation and insights.

About the Author

Sharon Vollman | Editor-in-Chief, ISE Magazine

Sharon Vollman is Editor-in-Chief of ISE Magazine. She oversees the strategic direction and content for ISE Magazine. She also leads the educational content development for ISE EXPO. Vollman has created educational partnerships with the major communications and entertainment providers including AT&T, Verizon, CenturyLink, Frontier Communications and Cincinnati Bell. She has covered the telecom industry since 1996. Prior to that, she worked in advertising with Ogilvy & Mather and CME. Vollman has a bachelor’s degree in Journalism/Advertising from the University of Iowa.