April 14, 2008

"If You're Not There Yet, You Soon Will Be

As was written in a page-wide BlackBerry ad.

I was reading a well-known opinion magazine last night. A special report on “Nomadism”: phenomena of the new technologically mobile class that scatters around city parks, cafes, and public libraries. (Yes, among other place also Warwick University’s library, I dare say.) An excerpt about an American college student gives you a flavour.

Permanently connected, she communicates by text, photo, video or voice throughout the day with her friends and family, and does her “work stuff” at the same time.

And then a word came around the corner. BlackBerry. It popped up in various of the reports articles. “[T]he BlackBerry by Research in Motion (RIM), a Canadian firm, has since 1999 made e-mail on the go seem normal.” Sounds like a regular phrase of global technology enthusiasts. And a little bit further, a new business at their first meeting: “The most urgent item, everybody agreed, was to get BlackBerries.” BlackBerry really gets smart people enthusiastic, I thought by myself. And if one read a bit further, it seems to be everywhere, too. “In physical meetings, they are the ones looking at their BlackBerries under the table”.

I was amazed. BlackBerry seemed to be the undercurrent of the entire global trend in wireless communication. I read on, to find that the multifunctional machine also has developed a crowd of addicts, who go by the name of “CrackBerries”. And that businessmen at home secretly sneak to the bathroom to quickly check their e-mail on it. A better way of making this thing appeal could hardly be thought of. “Addictive, ok,” I thought by myself. “That must have a reason. I should have a look how much these thingies cost”.

And then, when I flicked over the page, the ad. Very smart. A little bit too much for my sensible mind. “If You’re Not There Yet, You Soon Will Be”, the white letters on a black background informed me. First all these subtle insinuations in these articles, then this ad. Not so subtle at all, in my opinion.

“If You’re Not There Yet, You Soon Will Be”. Pffaaa. I don’t think so.

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