Whenever anyone got a phone call from 1111111111, it wasn't a telemarketer, it wasn't because their phone was broken, it wasn't a call from God, instead, it was the New York Times calling. Anytime anyone made a call from inside the New York Times headquarters, 'The Ones' would show up on the caller ID.
The numbers was one of the hallmarks of the New York Times that made the Times the Times. But on August 15, the 111-111-1111 caller ID number will die and be replaced with a number that's a lot less iconic: 212-556-1234 (their main number). They made the switch because the Times expect a new federal law that requires legitimate caller IDs to pass and also because some companies have blocked out all calls from 1111111111 (so employees don't talk to them).
How did the 1111111111 ID come about at the Times? According to, well, the Times, the number started in 1999 as an effort to protect sources. Because all calls would route to a central system with that number, it would be "impossible for anyone who subpoenaed phone records to know precisely from which extension a call originated". 1111111111 just happened to be the unique fake number that they picked. So gnarly. [NY Times]