It’s a tale as old as time: Old people versus technology. Today’s victim is none other than WaPo’s Pulitzer-Prize winner, Gene Weingarten. This seasoned citizen is having a hard time with Google, particularly Google Voice, which takes voicemails, transcribes them and sends to recipients as text. Gene decides to put this technology to the test with his editor, “Tom the Butcher.” In his piece, Weingarten leaves a series of voicemails for Tom to see what Google translates.
While creative, it’s worth noting that this is not a new schtick for Weingarten. He did the same thing in October of 2011. It’s pretty well-documented that Gene likes recycling material, so no surprises there. But, it’s also straight from the lazy, boring mold that much of Weingarten’s writing comes from these days. He writes a few introductory lines and then spends his entire column spewing nonsense and then writing the response from Google Voice. You have our sympathies, Google Voice. It’s hard enough reading some of Gene’s snoozers. Can’t imagine what it’s like to actually have to listen to it from the man himself.
What’d Gene have to say?
It turns out Google hasn’t gotten much better since Gene tried his act last time. Gene called his editor and left him this message: ““Tom, I’m in a tattoo parlor about to get a belly tat. Either Honest Abe Lincoln or Sarah Palin, naked. If I don’t hear from you I’m going with Sarah.” Google interpreted that to say, ““Tom on the tattoo Pollard out to get a good weekend. Either. On. If they want to know if you’re feeling make it. Yes, if I don’t hear from you. I’m gonna say.”
Kudos, Gene. You’ve turned complete and utter nonsense into a column this week. In other words, business as usual.