Reference materials

Technical manuals, how-to books, and other reference materials for Minitel users, developers, and entrepreneurs.

Miguel Mennig, L'Indispensable pour Minitel (1987)
Miguel Mennig's L'Indispensable pour Minitel (1987) is a guide to the world of Minitel with material aimed at both the casual and hardcore miniteliste. In addition to a directory of services and peripheral buyer's guide, Mennig's book features…

Christian Tavernier, Les Secrets du Minitel (1985)
Les Secrets du Minitel is another trade book aimed at the Minitel enthusiast. Editions Techniques et Scientifiques Françaises published the first edition in 1985 and a second edition in 1988.

Pierrick Bourgault, Minitel et Micro-Ordinateur (1985)
This how-to book was aimed at tech-savvy microcomputer owners. It offered information about using Minitel terminals as modems and running DIY Minitel services out of the home. Published in 1985 by SYBEX.

Simon Nora and Alain Minc, The Computerization of Society (1978)
The 1978 "Nora-Minc report" to the French President of the Republic, named "The Computerization of Society," was a landmark document that helped define French telecommunications policy, and was the precusor to the introduction of Minitel in the…

Marie Marchand, The Minitel Saga: A French Success Story (1988)
The Minitel Saga by Marie Marchand is one of the few books about Minitel published in English. In 2016, Lori Emerson, founding director of the Media Archaeology Lab, scanned and shared a copy of this hard-to-find book. For more information, see:…

France Telecom letter, 1991
A 1991 letter from France Telecom to its clients lauding the French telecommunications system as one of the most modern in the world. Indeed, "[i]n 1989, Minitel made France the world's most 'wired' country" - (James Gillies & Robert Cailliau, How…

France Telecom Price List (1991)
The 1991 France Telecom Price list, including Minitel's access and per-minute prices. Connecting to the online phone book for 3 minutes was free (for multiple searches, one would just disconnect and reconnect every 3 minutes to avoid being charged),…

France Telecom, Envoi: Les Pages Minitel (1994)
One of the original overt motivations behind the Minitel project was to digitize the phone book and save money on paper, printing, and distribution costs. Ironically, Minitel became so popular that France Telecom started printing a paper-based…

Julien Mailland and Kevin Driscoll, Minitel: Welcome to the Internet (2017)
Minitel: Welcome to the Internet grew out of this very lab. It was published in 2017 by The MIT Press as a part of the Platform Studies series. For more information, click on "About our book" at the left.