Today at SOBCon one of the event sponsors, the great folks at Intuit, had the brilliant idea for an exercise for the group. The challenge: Come up with a list of things you want to bill the Internet for. It was a perfect example of the great things that happen at SOBCon – the audience is actually expected to roll up their collective sleeves, work with their tablemates, and come up with thoughts, solutions, brilliant ideas, you get my drift. Naturally, given the nature of this eclectic group of smart, yet massively nerdy folks, great ideas do happen, but they are oft combined with a fair amount of ridicularity.
Everyone contributed and the ideas were fantastic. And, since somebody’s gotta do it, I put myself in charge of generating the invoice. Of course, that means that I should get to retain the lion’s share of the proceeds. Right? Shhhh, keep that on the DL, willya?
And so, without further ado, here is my invoice (Disclosure: Some of these are original to me and my table, and some stolen from others in the room – after all, it’s social media – stealing is a given).
1. Effin’ music that blares when you load a website and scares the CRAP out of you – never mind blows your cover when you’re goofing off at work.
2. Stupid, slow-loading, Flash intros that force us to wait for the stuff we are looking for – this is soooo annoying and soooo 2009.
3. Squirrels. A term coined by the nothing if not dynamic Sheila Scarborough that encompasses things that suck you in like Peanut Butter Jelly Time, anything on the TED site and everything published by The Oatmeal.
4. The Rabbit Hole. All the time we’ve lost doing crap we weren’t supposed to be doing because we got sucked down the rabbit hole. Searching for a new pet goldfish, finding the Pepperidge Farm Goldfish site, getting hungry, thinking ahead to tonight’s dinner, looking up the takeout menu for the local Thai restaurant, realizing I want to learn to speak Vietnamese, planning a trip to …. well, you get the drift.
5. The Carpal Tunnel Syndrome that we ALL now have, to some degree or another.
6. My Divorce Attorney. Since I didn’t pay enough attention to my significant other because of my addiction to YOU.
7. My Children’s Education. See above, since I’m now single and it sucks. And others, too numerous to mention here. All categorized as “relationship issues.”
8. Pop-up Ads. You know who you are.
9. 40% messages. Loading, loading, loading, loading. No, NOT loading.
10. Spam. #spamsucks
11. Contact Us pages that lead us to default email programs that we can’t STAND and which cause us to immediately leave your site.
12. Our Eyesight.
13. Our Bodies. The slouch, the pallor, the neck permanently out of alignment, not to mention our growing midsections and spreading backsides. We hold you responsible for our collective inability to get the laptop out of our laps long enough to work out anymore. Damn you.
14. Google. For making search so addictive. And for all the times we can’t find what we are searching for. And for not making Gmail better.
15. Microsoft. For all the crashes and all the bull.
16. Facebook. For all the time wasted looking up old boyfriends.
17. ATT. For crappy service. Always.
18. Sites like “Tampon Craft Ideas” – they just don’t need to be there, do they?
19. Captchas. Enough already with the effin’ Captchas. Please.
And the line item voted MOST popular with the ENTIRE crowd:
20. Ego Destruction: All those pretty girls who pop up in the right hand side of Facebook who promise they want to go out with me, but who really don’t. That sucks.
AMOUNT DUE: $$$$ Priceless
That’s our invoice. Got anything to add? Come on, let’s hear it!
P.S. Invoice Due Upon Receipt