There was a time when asking for a phone number meant something.
It took some courage, it established hope, it was a test of sorts… Would we get a fake? Would the other person answer when we called? Exchanging phone numbers could be the beginning of a fruitful relationship, or of a harassment nightmare. Once people obtained ours, we had no control.
The premise: It´s easier to know a person´s name than their phone number. So why go through the trouble of asking? Not only is that uncomfortable, but using the name as a reference is a more effective way of getting in touch.