Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Internet Lies To You. WHEN WILL YOU GET THAT!?!?

My heart is singing a joy song.

Take a moment to Google "iOS 7 waterproof". Do it. It's worth it.

Yes. Someone Photoshopped some fake iOS 7 ads to tell people that a software update would make their phone waterproof. And some other people, who may in fact not be as insightful as they possibly could be, believed it. So now thousands of articles saying that, no, a software update will not change the physical properties of your phone.

Anonymous evil ad maker with Photoshop, I wish I could shake your hand. Here's why.

The Internet is an immensely new, hugely important mode of human communication, but we don't yet know how to use it. People don't understand this about the Internet: It is half lies. At best.

Most people who saw the fake ad read it, smiled, and moved on. A few people, however, believed it. They took their phone in the shower. The device was destroyed. They learned a valuable lesson, in a way that won't soon be forgotten, and all it cost them was a few hundred bucks.

And you know something? Maybe they will be less like my older relatives, who never read anything in e-mail so ludicrous they didn't believe it.

I promise you this. One of these days, someone who trashed their phone will get a message saying vaccines are killers, or a guy in Nigeria wants to give them a hundred million bucks, or that they should quit the chemo for their Stage 3 breast cancer because eating enough lemons will take care of it (yes, real example). Maybe, dare to dream, when this happens they will think about their phone and maybe, just maybe hit Delete. Like they should.

It is a small price to pay for a lesson of such value.

Oops. Sorry. What I meant to say was, it's real. You can install iOS 7 on your iPhone and give it to your kids to play in the bathtub. Go try it. You know it's true, because you just read it.


  1. The two comments I saw from "victims" were, I assumed, attempts to signal-boost the trolling. Did anyone actually fall for this?

  2. People have had a sedentary lifestyle for the past 10.000 years and have yet to learn to stop churning rumors they've heard from a guy who knows a guy who heard from a third guy... So what makes you believe that there's evena sliver of hope that they'll stop forwarding emails telling them that Obama is an extraterrestrial secretly working to assimilate humanity into the Galactic Empire of the Muslim Space Hippies?

  3. Hoo. Boy. I actually overheard some people talking about this in the library and two of the three believed an update would do that waterproofing. Yikes.

  4. Then again sometimes vaccines do kill and chemo-treatment is not a guarantee against cancer. And a software update can introduce automatic [data] [cloud] cloning in case of damage so that, while yes you've lost your physical device, at least you have the data protected.
    The only thing I think the internet has proven so far is our desire to talk shit about other people... makes me sad....

  5. But dust - nothing is 100%, and while there are *incredibly rare* cases of vaccines causing more harm than good, they have already been overshadowed by those NOT being vaccinated causing the reintroduction of previously eliminated disease. So 10 random tragic deaths versus 1000 entirely preventable deaths? Um, sad but easy choice. Same for the cancer thing - wishful thinking doesn't cure diseases.

    But I agree on the 'talk crap about others' part, dust ... when I first saw this it was in the context of an Android fan using it as 'proof' that iPhone users are 'iSheep' - i.e. stupid. In other words, as a way to take a superior stance and put others down. Sad

    1. It's sad but easy choice until your kid is one of the random tragic deaths... But I can't, in good heart, argue this point given that I've vaccinated both my children and will continue to do so because I do think it's safer than the alternative. As for Cancer, I think it's more of a gray area in many places but it's not the point I was making.

      Yeah, most of the time seeing how people treat others on the internet (and in real life) just makes me sad. But to end on a higher note, I have also seen people show so much more kindness than I ever felt possible so hopefully it balances out somehow...

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