Google Glass Attack Victim (and Tech Publicist) Illustrates Challenges in Promoting Google Glass

We have absolutely no idea what went down in San Francisco last week, when tech PR and I Love Social Media founder Sarah Slocum claims she was robbed and assaulted for wearing her Glass into a punk rock bar.

One thing we’re sure of based on the clip she released this week: we’re very, very glad we weren’t there.

Being (thankfully) unfamiliar with the politics of the SF tech scene, we think the story is most interesting as an illustration of both the inherent challenges of promoting such a product and the various ways to respond to public criticism of that product.

Slocum’s conclusion is that she hopes the incident “doesn’t deter anyone from getting Google Glass” as the experience is usually “180 degrees different”—and the Glass team agrees with her:

We think you’ll agree that this isn’t particularly positive publicity for Google. Many average folks on the street clearly see Glass as a potential invasion of their privacy and, while some commentors note that the device isn’t always recording (the light is an indicator), no one unfamiliar with it would know that. Here’s Slocum’s defense:

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That’s not how many people see it, though.

Arguments over the story have been, shall we say, intense. And while we again have no idea what went down, this statement has earned lots of headlines that probably won’t go over well with the people who dislike Glass in the first place:

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We still see it as a curious and potentially interesting product that isn’t yet acceptable in public. And we’re fairly sure Google wishes that users would acknowledge this fact in order to make the product launch go a little more smoothly.

Also: while we appreciate the challenges in overcoming the “glasshole” stereotype, “glasshead” doesn’t really have the same ring to it.

@PatrickCoffee Patrick Coffee is a senior editor for Adweek.