Phonebook of
Phonebook of the
Telecommunication History in France
Before ... Early Internet Years in France
Whitepages go online in different countries

White Pages
Yellow Pages
The expressions "Whitepages" and "Yellowpages"
exist since the late 19th century and are used
on printed phonebooks all over the (English Speaking) World.
Chesapeake Yellow Pages
Yellow Pages from 1936
by the Chesapeake and Pontomac Telephone Company

Cleveland White Pages
White Pages from 1980 by Ohio Bell
Cleveland Metropolitan Area

1982 France on the Minitel
As already mentioned before France is the first country
to have an online directory.
In 1982 the French PTT launch the Minitel in France.
Every French phonesubscriber can use the system
to find national phonenumbers.
Popularity is growing rapidly.
The name of the directory is 11, later 3611

Sony It A 550
Minitel site for Electrica for Sony, today Cremerie de Paris

1991 it becomes possible
to add information pages behind a Phonebook Listing.
Above screenshot shows the entrance pages
of a "prehistoric 100 page Minitel Site"
once created by the editor of this article.

France is "online" before anybody else
but not on the World Wide Web,
only on the "prehistoric" France based Minitel system.

In the late 1990s Minitel is so popular
that France has difficulties to adopt the competing
US born Internet system.

1994 Australia by Testra

1994 Australia is the first country where telephone directories
go on the web first
followed by
both edited by Sensis, once a division of Telstra,
the once Australian State owned phone company.
Also see the Sensis / story
Beautiful Australian White Ad has made a very beautiful TV
commercial, pointing out the world "hi"
part of the world "White Pages"
have a look at it

1996 USA by Swedish immigrant Alex Algard

Alexander Algard
young Internet Pioneer Alexander Algard,
founder and owner of
Alexander Algard, today
in a fun Video accepting the ALS Ice Bucket Challenger was first registered
at an unknown date after 1991 and before 1995.

Algard imigrated
from Sweden when he was 13 years old.
According to the legend, while being a student
he uses almost all of his savings
to buy the domain for $ 900.
This happened 1996, April 8.

Whitepages is the expression
used in the United States for Residential Directories.

Algard never resells the domain
and uses his IT scills and charisma
to build one of America's most popular Telephone directories,
edited from Seattle, Washington.

Alexander Algard's directory is used by AT&T to power by AT&T

Dane Madsen
Internet Pioneer Dane Madsen,
co-founder of was registered 1996 April 4
by 3 friends from from Los Angeles,
Dane Madsen, Bill Povodonra and Roland Oister.

The domain name had
also been registered before
but the first owner forgot to pay the domain renewal charges.

In November 2004 SBC and Bell South (both later AT&T)
bought the website. The SBC directry
and the Bell South directory merged with
See the

1997 France by France Telecom

France Telecom goes online under the brand Pages Zoom
but they decides to rebrand
their online directory
to Pages Jaunes (French for Yellow Pages)
1998, November 25 is registered
1998, December 30 is registered

Pages Jaunes, once the directory of France TelecomPages Jaunes, once the directory of France Telecom
English version of, once the Telephone Diretory owned by France Telecom, the former national French Phonecompany
Pages Jaunes is the English translation of Yellow Pages
The expression Pages Jaunes already appeared in 1887 over a century before t France Telecom former Pages Zoomwas rebranded Pages Jaunes

features "White Pages" and "Yellow Pages"
in the english version of their site.
The above screenshot was taken April 4 2004,
a month before the opening of the .fr domains

Until 2004 it is impossible to register the domain
as an .fr internet address ...

But as if the world would only speak French
nobody in the Phone company
thinks of registering
the original English expressions: and

2000 France / World
Phonebook of the

Phonebook of the
Cybercafe de Paris
Cremerie de Paris,once the Web Cafe at the dawn of the Internet
At the Cybercafe de Paris
the editor of this article creates
2000 January 25 the Phonebook of the World.
The inspiration comes from his aunt, a visitor
of the cybercafe that was completely computer illitarate.
While using the internet for the first time
she tried out all kind of logic sounding
names followed .com ... nothing worked.

The domain is registered
at the counter of the Cybercafe de Paris
for 70 US Dollars
(the a minimum registration period of two years.)

Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of El
Phonebook of
Phonebook of Hong
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of New
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of South
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
Phonebook of Wallis and
Phonebook of
Phonebook of
In the summer 2000 national Phonebook domains
are added, one for every country of the World ...
In the meantime it has become possible to register dot com domains
for one year only, reducing the investment to 35 US Dollars.
(The list gives one example for each letter of the Alphabet).

As the Credit Cards keeps blocking,
a few country phonebook domains are registered every day.
Lina Leonardi, a very charming banker
of the Banco Sanpaulo in Paris is terrified,
not understanding what a domain name is,
thinking that the Credit Card was been stolen ...

2000 Canada by Anna Algard

October 31
Anna Algard / Anna Shimizu, a Vancouver based interior designer
(Harmony Sense Interiors) and sister of Alex Algard from
the White Pages domain for Canada.
At the time only Canadian Residents or Companies
were entitled to register a .ca domain.

2004 France by Phonebook of the World

Until 2004 it is almost impossible to register .fr domains,
in fact only a French company or association
can register it's exact name,
as it is shown by an "extrait Kbis"
(French Register of Commerce).
For individuals of foreigners registring a .fr domain is not allowed.

The .fr domain policy is so restrictive
that the French public starts to adopt ".com"
as if the American / International .com was also the French internet extension.

Years go by, and it is impossible
to access French Whitepages
with the internet address

2004 Mai 11, the date of the
first step in liberalisation of French Internet Domains.

Any France based company or association
can can now register any "imaginary" domain name.

French Individuals still need to wait until 2006 June 20
before they are allowed to register a .fr domain name.
Only in 2010 it becomes possible to register a .fr domain
sor someone living outside France.

Whitepages in France,
nobody the phonecompany under management of Michel Datchary
seamed to have ever though registring this iconic domain
during all thoses years of restricted domain access ....

the english version of Pages Jaunes, directory of France Telecom  featuring the expressions Whitepages and Yellowpages, screenshot April 04 2004

May 11 2004
while servicing some Cybercafe clients
and handling complains about International phone lines

the editor of this article
filled out a paper domain application form
to get the iconic domain
The application still needed to be send over the fax line.
... In his mind it was impossible
and a bit like a hopeless lotto ticket.


He was wrong
and more than surprised when a few days later
domain application was returned
25 Euros were charged on the Phonebook of the World Credit card.

Two days later were granted as well,
another 25 Euros. registered from the
Cremerie de Paris, a place
already deeply rooted into the history
of Telecommunications

But what might the the most amazing in the story
it is something that we did not know at the time.

historic courtyard behind the Cremerie de Paris
historic courtyard behind the Cremerie de Paris
from where many Whitepages are edited

In fact we at the time of registration of the first whitepages domains
we never knew
that the Cremerie de Paris (ex Cybercafe de Paris)
is situated at a magic geographic location
A Tel Communication HOTSPOT that goes back in time ...

In fact Rue des Déchargeurs is one of the oldest streets in Paris
going back to the year 1300.
Have a look at the gate on the left side of the Cremerie de Paris.
300 years ago it was the entrance to the Royal French Postal Services
operated by the Pajot & Rouillé family ...

Louis Leon PajotPortail Cremerie de Paris
Louis Leon Pajot, maitre des Postes, Telecom Pioneer, Inventor
entrance gate of the Cremerie de Paris mansion, home of the Rouillé & Pajot family
and from 1671 to 1738 seat of the Royal French Postal Services.
Above picture shows Louis Leon Pajot,
grandson of the company founders Leon Pajot and Louis Rouille.
He was called "Maître des Postes du Royaume de France".

Horse Carriages rue des Dechargeurs
The Rouillé and Pajot family were operating 800 post stations
located all over France with a few ones in Italy as well,
the southest one beeing located in Rome and Venice.
Horse carriages were bringing mail from Paris.

The Postal station even had a "cabinet noir"
where King Louis XV requested suspicious mail
to be opened and spied out
so he would have acces to secret information ...

2005 Brazil sponsored by Aimée de Heeren,
once the secret first Lady of Brazil
... resulting in many more countries

The Whitepages domain registration
might have been limited to France only
if the editor of this article
wouldn't have had a very unusual friend ...
He had met her when he was 19
having now idea about who she really was.

A few years later he happened to open the first Internet Cafe in France
occasionally giving some Internet lessons at the Cybercafe de Paris ....
It was a way to make some extra money while the cafe's activity was still slow ...
And of course Aimée de Heeren wanted to come,
regardless her age which had always been a secret.

The friend was an exceptional woman
that spoke 8 languages and that was still extremely beautiful.
She had a very international view over the world
and when she arrived at a reception, every head was turning around.

Aimée de Heeren in front of the Cybercafe de ParisAimee de Heeren
Aimée de Heeren at the Cremerie de Paris, taking internet lessons with the publisher of the Phonebook of the World, many Whitepages and editor of this article
Aimée de Heeren,
born Aimée Sotto Major Sa
a Brazilian expatriate living between France and the United States.

She just
never care about
the age
of their friends ...

much much older
much older
same age
much younger
much much younger ...

Born into a poor family in Brazil
Aimée was so beautiful
she had catched the attention
of many important people of the 19th century ...
She was fascinated by

Aimee de HeerenAlexander Graham Bell
Aimée de Heeren and Alexander Graham Bell, inventor of the phone and many other things

1921 when Aimée was still very young
and hardly spoke English
a friend from Brazil (the editor of the article can't remeber his name)
had taken her on a trip to the United States.

Her friends grandfather knew someone living in Canada
at Beinn Bhreagh
a magnificent place near the US Border.
The person was a very original old man
who spend his time experimenting "aeronautic" instruments
with his mife Marbel and some young and very glamorous scientists.
the phone
The name of the man was Alexander Graham Bell
- almost half a century before back in 1876 -
he had invented the Telephone.

Aimee de HeerenThomas Edison
Aimée de Heeren and Thomas Edison, inventor of electric light and many other things

A few years later,
in the meantime her English had significantly improved,
she met another inventor:
Thomas Edison, already an old man,
who had - almost half a century before back in 1879 -
invented the electric light.
Mr Edison was working all the time.
He must have been fascinated by Aimées beauty, originality and style.

GE, General Electric
Thomas Edison gave her some Belle Epoque jewels
and a little with the GE Logo.

The "curles" in the GE logo represent the movement of electricity.
The circle around makes it timeless.
According to Edison, when seeing Aimée
"it is like feeling electricity everywhere ..."

Aimee de HeerenGetulio Vargas
Aimée de Heeren and Getulio Vargas, longest of any Presidents of Brazil

A few years later
Getulio Vargas, the President of Brazil
fell in love with her
and she became the secret first Lady of her country ...
A state secret which was kept confidential
until the President's personal diary was release 40 years after his death.

In 1938 she had to leave Brazil
arriving in Paris where she became
a friend of the fashion designer Coco Chanel.
With the arrival of he second world war
she had to leave again and moved on to New York.

Joseph Patrick Kennedy, boyfriend of Aimee de Heeren, around 1940Aimee de Heeren in 1939
Aimée de Heeren in 1939 and Joseph Patrick Kennedy Jr,
older brother of President John F Kennedy, Robert Kenedy and Senator Ted Kennedy

Emigrating to the US she fell in love with
Joseph Patrick Kennedy Jr,
the oldest of the 4 Kennedy brothers.
They had met on the côte d'Azur shortly after Aimées arrival to Paris.

Aimée never cared about "age"
and 60 years later
there she was at the Cybercafe to take internet lessons.
... everybody around the Cybercafe loved her.

One of her lessons took place in june 2004
(Aimée had just returned from New York where she lived part of the year).
The the editor of this article was amused to show her that he had succeded
to register the iconic domain names and

Aimée loved the idea.
"You know   25 euros is not that much !!"

International people might use
to find phonenumbers in France ...
it's a little hilareous that during all these years
the phone company
never thought about registering the domains"

but what about Brazil ?

Aimée loved her home country Brazil
and sometimes she was a little home sick.

According to some crazy stories
- she had told the editor of this article -
Coco Chanel and herself
might have had a little influence on the fact that Brazil
was able to obtain, back in 1964 the magic double digit
country code +55

No wasn't working

Aimée de Heeren:
"You must get this Internet domain for Brazil
Nobody out of Brazil
knows the expression "Paginas Brancas"
(Portugeese for White Pages)

as much as nobody in Brazil, America, Germany
understands the world "Pages Blanches"
(French for White Pages)
absolutely nobody -

The World speaks English
understands "Yellow Pages" and "White Pages"

The editor of this article thinking
yes Akio Morita he knew from the times
the Cremerie was a Sony Telephone store
would have told him exactly the same thing ...

The only problem was
at the time
it was impossible
for a "foreign French" company
to get a Brazilian internet domain,
as much as non French companies
couldn't register .fr domains.

Aimée de Heeren:
"You must get White for Brazil.
I want to pay for the registration charges,
whatever it costs
and if you need to fly there
you have to go.
Just look for a cheap plane ticket
and if you don't have enough I pay half of the ticket."

After one year of efforts
the domain
was finally granted in 2005 september 26
by the Comitê Gestor da Internet no Brasil.

Aimee de Heeren still saw it ...

"how wonderful you managed to get,
If only Alexander Graham Bell would still be there.
He and his young assistants would be so amused
that the "little Aimée"
that new nothing about the world and that hardly spoke English at the time
has been able to give a little push for a Directory of his telephone ...
You have to continue the project
and expand it to many many other countries ..."

Aimée sadly died in New York September 14 2006

It's only a few days before
at the Lenox Hill Hospital in New York
the editor of this article found out one of her many secrets
... her real age
Not 70, neither 80,

It is only when writing
this article
he suddenly

that it is not every day
that you you have the chance
to give an internet lesson

to someone
... that has
been a friend of the inventors
of the telephone
and the electric light

inventions that were made
back in 1876 / 1879
almost 140 years ago.

He followed the advise of Aimee de Heeren
and kept watching the opening up
and liberalization
of national internet country codes
all around the World ...

Other countries resulting from Aimée's internet lessons
at the Cremerie de Paris

2004 july
Israel / Italy /

The idea
was to standardize
and to simplify
access to phonenumbers.

White Pages Italy   by White Pages Italy  by White
The next 2 whitepages domains to be registered were
Whitepages for Israel,
and Whitepages for Italy,
The registration occured the same day
2004 july 28

2004 november
Laos -

2004 november 11 is attributed
by the .La Registry
White Pages Laos  by White

2005 january
Singapore -

2005 january 3 is attributed
by Singapore Network and Information Center

White Pages Singapore  by White

2011 june
Japan -

White Pages Japan  by

2014 august
Germany -

White Pages Germany  by

2014 september
Argentina -

And in some countries like Argentina
the whitepages domain was once a property
of a national Phonecompany (Telecom Argentina)
that had sold their directory activities (Publicom Sa)
to investors that later
simply forgot
the renewal of the domain name.

White Pages Argentina by

Sometimes registrations were easy
sometimes very complicated
The mid 2000s for many countries of the world
it still was the dawn of the internet.

Every Whitepages domain has it's story,
a story which has not been written yet
and the would beway too long for this page ...

Today from the Cremerie de Paris,
300 years ago home to the Royal French Postal Services
and 20 years ago home of the first Internet Cafe in Paris
are edited many many Whitepages
making it the World's largest collection
of the iconic White Pages Domain names ...

Cremerie de Paris, iconic Pop Up Store Location
The Cremerie has turned into an Expo Center for Very Beautiful Brands
and one of the World's most famous Pop Up Stores locations

Next ... Liberalisation of Directory Assistance ...

Phonebook of the