The Fucknut Report

A few weeks ago Tristan and I were at an SA|UX meeting standing on the balcony outside Asoka sipping a beer.

Tristan commented on how (and why?) people buy mobile (GSM) content. Random crap of no real value.. like ringtones, premium SMS services etc. Boggles the mind.. but we kinda concluded that there are many feeble minded bored souls in this world.. the kind we should consider using instead of doing animal testing, barely smart enough to step on a lever to get a food pellet.

Ok, let’s not get nasty, yet.. *haha*.

Then I remembered an interesting story. A story that gives you some insight into the mind of the consumer we are talking about here. Pure genius.

A few years ago a good friend was working as a sysadmin for one of the bigger mobile content companies in SA.

I think they had some trouble with the volumes of SMS messages for the Big Brother show at the time. In the process of debugging this he found and interesting pattern in the server log files.

He found a strangely regular user of their quote-of-the-day service. How many times a day do you want to pay for a random quote from a simple database of quotes, right? I’m guessing he must have received the same quote a few times by then.

Turns out this intellectual giant of a muppet was having a romantic relationship with quote-of-the-day.

What was he thinking?

“roses are red
violets are blue.. you are an idiot, but I still love you”
— regards QoD Service

So, this friend did what any self respecting sysadmin would.. he wrote a script that would grep for any SMS messages from this smart guy and mail a batch to their tech mailing list every morning… it was called: The Fucknut Report.

Many mornings of laugher and tears over mugs of coffee I’m sure.

Damagement found out about this. They phoned the guy and explained that he was only getting randomly selected quotes from a database and that there was no cute girl of his dreams involved. Guaran-friggin-teed.

The messages stopped. The tech team was very sad. But then.. the messages started again.

He sent something like “if you really love me you will let me know”. And somehow he randomly received a quote that in his warped mind somehow confirmed that the QoD service loved him.

Yes, it’s a true story.

“Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the the universe.”
— Albert E.

5 thoughts on “The Fucknut Report

  1. I think the guy might have been ill, rather than dumb. (And I think calling it the ‘Fucknut’ report is unfortunately another indictment against the IT crowd who are already assumed by many to have zero understanding of anything outside their immediate field of specialization)

    It is also possible that he knew well enough that the messages weren’t from a “real” person, but it getting the impression that they were was enough for him.

    It would certainly make for an interesting psychiatric study on the effects of isolation and how computers could play a role in making people feel ‘loved’.

    p.s While I was typing this another advert came up for farting babies or some such if I only would send an SMS. Can’t wait for contextual TV adverts…

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