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CES Credentials-B-Gone
January 10, 2008 5:09 PM   Subscribe

Juvenile? Awesome? Awesomely juvenile? The kids of Gizmodo bring some TV-B-Gones to the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas. This is what happened.

Given the general atmosphere of electronic saturnalia that pervades CES, the stunt is faintly satisfying as a piece of agitprop (or, shall we say, shit-disturbing). It's just insanely unprofessional... depending, of course, on what you consider the Gizmodo writers' profession to be.
posted by bicyclefish (85 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
Part of me finds the idea of this amusing, but I definitely fall into the "lame prank" camp on this one. Kind of crossing a line, especially if you ever want your group to get press passes to anything else in the future.
posted by Stunt at 5:15 PM on January 10, 2008


it could have been worse, i suppose
posted by pyramid termite at 5:17 PM on January 10, 2008


Fucking with the TVs during a presentation? These guys are assholes.
posted by jcruelty at 5:19 PM on January 10, 2008 [7 favorites]


the stunt is faintly satisfying as a piece of agitprop

Well, it would be if it were being perpetrated by activists who were trying to make a point about the pervasiveness and soul-deadening aspects of consumer electronics, or some have some other hippie / luddite / quack political agenda along those lines.

But, correct me if I'm wrong, gizmodo, which has the tagline "So much in love with shiny new toys, it's unnatural", is a gadget blog whose entire raison d'etre is to pimp the consumer electronics industry.
posted by dersins at 5:20 PM on January 10, 2008


Shitty thing to do, but what a cool little gadget.
posted by mr_roboto at 5:21 PM on January 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Not AdBusters, not some really political anti-tech group, just Gizmodo biting the hand that feeds them? Lame prank.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 5:22 PM on January 10, 2008


Regardless of their reasoning behind offing the screens, I got a kick out of this. I am now convinced that I need a TV B Gone.
posted by item at 5:28 PM on January 10, 2008


How's this any different from dumping paint on the presenters? This is idiotic and I'd love to see them banned. People's jobs depend on these events.
posted by null terminated at 5:28 PM on January 10, 2008


How's this any different from dumping paint on the presenters? This is idiotic and I'd love to see them banned. People's jobs depend on these events.

I hope that was a rhetorical question.
posted by Kwantsar at 5:29 PM on January 10, 2008


I have an unsettling premonition that the future might deteriorate in such a confusing fashion.

When the machines begin turning off, unexplainedly and continuously, I will know that the war with the machines has begun and that the rest of my life will be held at the ruthless mercy of the very machines I have become to love. And other scary sci-fi stuff.
posted by localhuman at 5:30 PM on January 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


I kinda fall between the following two points - this is pretty funny and these guys were behaving like a pack of script kiddies.

The A/V people at the show took a lot of heat for this shit, I'm sure. Now they will know who dunnit, and I bet there's going to be a LOT of electrical tape wasted to cover up the IR ports at the shows from now on.
posted by Chuffy at 5:32 PM on January 10, 2008


How's this any different from dumping paint on the presenters?

Paint might take a while to wash off, and you might have to spend money on a new suit. A TV screen you can turn back on in a matter of seconds.

Anyone working in the gadget / technology industry who can't spend five seconds to switch a TV screen back on again obviously needs time out to de-stress. Oh no! One presentation messed up delayed and ruined made slightly more awkward, out of the 150 or more that the presentation guy's done that week! Multi-billion companies will fall! Over-paid sales people might get slightly flustered! Potential customers might wander off, look at something else and come back again later! Or merely just look at the product website at a later time convenient to them! For shame, Gizmodo.

When the video first started I was expecting it to be a viral piece for Panasonic and was both disappointed and relieved when it wasn't.

Probably the most interesting thing that's come out of CES so far.
posted by tapeguy at 5:35 PM on January 10, 2008 [6 favorites]


If I had deep Motorola pockets, I'd pay my engineers to permanently fuck with Gizmodo's website...shut it down, jam it with spam, randomly fill with cursewords and scat porn...you know: pranks.
posted by ColdChef at 5:36 PM on January 10, 2008 [6 favorites]


I have a TV-B-Gone, and while I love using it at malls, airports, restaurants, and other places where i get bombarded with TV when I would rather not be, but this is rude. And very funny. I put this into the same category as nut shots on America's Funniest Home Videos.
posted by 1adam12 at 5:39 PM on January 10, 2008


Doing it to a random video wall: kind of funny prank. Doing it to a guy giving a presentation: assholery.
posted by hattifattener at 5:39 PM on January 10, 2008 [9 favorites]


I'm disappointed in the Gizmodo staff. That was very childish. It was utterly inappropriate of them to spoil the vacuous marketing wankfest that is CES. I sincerely hope that none of those overcompensated cockheads lose their societally corrosive jobs hawking useless shit to pampered assholes over this.

(sneaks off, eggs Sony's car)
posted by phooky at 5:44 PM on January 10, 2008 [5 favorites]


I think the possibility that Gizmodo will suffer some blowback for their childish prank (dropped from ad campaigns, harder to get press credentials, less free demo gadgets, etc.) makes the whole thing MORE entertaining.
posted by wendell at 5:47 PM on January 10, 2008 [9 favorites]


Fucking with the TVs during a presentation?

a presentation about how awesome the TVs are. in other words, a sales pitch. you could even go so far as to say it was an advertisement.

now if CES = SERIOUS BUSINESS to you, i guess getting your "message" interrupted would be a big deal. but to me, it just seemed like a silly prank and one that, i must admit, made me giggle.

we are talking about TVs, remember, people, and i've got 90% of you on record in my favorites as not owning one, so let's not get too exercised about LGpanasonyicsushita getting their presentation messed with.

also, it should be noted that the video represents 1/100th of one percent of all the TV hours during CES* and thus hardly represents a real "disruption.

note: this stat is made up but i hope the point is clear -- that's a giant-ass convention.
posted by Hat Maui at 5:49 PM on January 10, 2008 [1 favorite]



null terminated writes "People's jobs depend on these events."

Oh come on. It's a little problem for the presenter, that's true enough, but most of the times the stuff they are shooting is bullshit anyway. I'd rather have them talk to a client that is already showing some interest, if for some reason the brochure doesn't answer the client demands.

The only good thing and the hardest thing to come about at these event is actual socialization. It seems that people are busy looking busy, all serious and professional, but there is also little socialization going, also because many expect the person at the other side to be a salesman that would give you a baby and tell you you are so fucking hot. Yet , in my experience , all the eyefest and pretending could be done much more efficiently with professional entertainers and on Television, while a geekfest or a "meet the other type of geek" fest would probably lead to more good ideas and maybe even some talking of contracts.
posted by elpapacito at 5:52 PM on January 10, 2008


As someone who has spent countless man-hours, and supervised hundreds or perhaps thousands of man-hours designing, producing, prepping, installing and supervising trade shows, booths, installations, presentations, and elements, and having those duties entrusted to me by a client who is paying thousands (sometimes hundreds of thousands) of dollars to ensure that their experience was flawless and painless, I would be highly pissed off.

Gizmodo can be assured of two things: 1) that they will experience a temporary spike in site traffic as the geek-world tunes in for the shadenfreude, and 2) that they will be persona non grata at future events.
posted by spacely_sprocket at 5:54 PM on January 10, 2008


Gawd, that was so lame. It was like they went in trying to gremlin up the place, but nothing much happened. If you're going to pull a mean-spirited prank, and everyone seems to take it in stride, then don't brag about it on the internet.
posted by 23skidoo at 5:59 PM on January 10, 2008


What's the point? These imbeciles are making as much an "impact" as the dweebs who take their pants off in the subway and call it "performance art".


In other words: no one cares about your prank or what you think it stands for.
posted by wfc123 at 5:59 PM on January 10, 2008



a presentation about how awesome the TVs are. in other words, a sales pitch. you could even go so far as to say it was an advertisement.


Sorry, but how does that up the funny factor of this prank?
posted by katillathehun at 6:06 PM on January 10, 2008


I'll agree with hattifattener, not cool to do it during a presentation. As much as people want to blow it of as some kind of giant festival of corporate product hawking, employees are sent there to ensure things go smoothly, and when they don't, they might well be held accountable for it in some way or another. If I were the folks at Gizmodo, I'd send letters to any company they disrupted during presentation to take responsibility for what happened, just to clear the record in case any employees got heat for it.
posted by Atreides at 6:13 PM on January 10, 2008


well, wfc123, I think those guys are funny too.
posted by hattifattener at 6:19 PM on January 10, 2008


Sorry, but how does that up the funny factor of this prank?

i didn't say it did. the point was more that it's an advertisement, which i don't regard as a form of expression like political speech or academic fora, where if you did this it would be an entirely different level of dickishness.

sure, they're willing participants in the whole thing, and Part Of The Problem, and yes, i'd likely be annoyed if it were my presentation, but that doesn't mean it's in any way a Big Deal, and i am extremely doubtful that gizmodo will suffer much ill consequence. they still provide a quite valuable service to the marketers at the giant corporations, annoying pranks or no.
posted by Hat Maui at 6:23 PM on January 10, 2008


When TV-B-Gones first started making the rounds, I figured they were primarily electronic firecrackers for assholes and masturbatory aids for passive-aggressive self-obsessed entitled moralizers. This has done nothing to alter that opinion.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 6:25 PM on January 10, 2008 [12 favorites]


I wanted to repaste one of the comments from the gizmodo article..

"This, ladies and gentlemen, is the difference between "journalist" and "gizmodo" in a nutshell.
A journalist spends a lot of time making sure their actions don't interfere with what they're coving.
Gizmodo just walks around and screws up other people's work."

Well said. This was a really lame childish 'prank.' It's not even remotely amusing at all. It's just... stupid.
posted by drstein at 6:26 PM on January 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


localhuman: When the machines begin turning off, unexplainedly and continuously, I will know that the war with the machines has begun and that the rest of my life will be held at the ruthless mercy of the very machines I have become to love.

But we won't fight the machines. We'll fight each other.
posted by hangashore at 6:29 PM on January 10, 2008


I have clicked on this twice, from separate sources, on different computers both running IE6 which last time I looked was one of the most popular browser versions in the world, and the page is like scrambled eggs and there is no hint of how to make the video appear.
posted by localroger at 6:34 PM on January 10, 2008


The slippery slope argument: if they keep this up eventually all TVs will be outfitted with anti-TV-B-Gone technology/black electrical tape, thus making it truly impossible to sit in an airport lounge, checkout line, or doctor's waiting room in peace. I don't own a TV-B-Gone, but I still like to think that the option is there if I ever really started to snap.

Use your TV-B-Gone ammunition wisely, friends, so the TV manufacturers and installers will never catch on.

And of course these dimwits have to do it at CES where all the TV manufacturers already are. Talk about shooting oneself in the foot.
posted by L'homme armé at 6:35 PM on January 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


I was covering CES for another gadget blog, and while I do disdain the big displays and pitches in favor of actually getting exclusives and things (I interviewed Penn Jillette, yesss) and don't like the people speaking or hearing them, I never actually messed with them. It's their job, and I don't mess with that.

I don't mind messing with someone's fun, or their night, or whatever when it's right, but if we bloggers are going to be given press passes as I was and allowed into things like this despite being scrappy dudes who don't actually own suits, we have to act as if we are real journalists. I think I did a pretty good job, and my reward was great coverage, some decent swag, and about 30 articles. They did this shit, and we shall see how they will be rewarded.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 6:35 PM on January 10, 2008


Gizmodo must be run by idiots.

First, completely unprofessional behavior at an industry event. This is not a public space where one might reasonably expect quiet.

There will definitely be a blowback to this. At a minimum, they will be banned from any future CES show and possibly other trade shows.

Likely, they will be embargoed by Motorola, meaning no more cool gadgets from a leading cell phone manufacturer. There are hundreds of other sites to send demo units to raise awareness.

Unlikely, but possible, legal action that might not be successful, but will burn up a bunch of Nick Denton's cash to deal with.

And people wonder why bloggers have trouble getting press credentials...
posted by Argyle at 6:38 PM on January 10, 2008


At a minimum, they will be banned from any future CES show and possibly other trade shows.

Ha, they can't ban gizmodo. Them and engadget is it for electronics coverage online.
posted by smackfu at 6:41 PM on January 10, 2008


I guess what I'm trying to say is: Is this something I'd have to publicly disdain owning a TV to fetishize?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 6:45 PM on January 10, 2008


Gizmodo pulling childish pranks and engaging in general assholery? They posted tubgirl on the front page of sister site Kotaku in the heat of some inter-site Halo 3 competition. I'm not really surprised.

If I had deep Motorola pockets, I'd pay my engineers to permanently fuck with Gizmodo's website...shut it down, jam it with spam, randomly fill with cursewords and scat porn...you know: pranks.
posted by ColdChef at 5:36 PM on January 10 [+] [!] No other comments.


Now that would be funny.
posted by eyeballkid at 6:46 PM on January 10, 2008


When TV-B-Gones first started making the rounds, I figured they were primarily electronic firecrackers for assholes and masturbatory aids for passive-aggressive self-obsessed entitled moralizers. This has done nothing to alter that opinion.

Yeah. I gotta get me one.
posted by wendell at 6:51 PM on January 10, 2008 [5 favorites]


These guys are dicks, and I don't use the term lightly. This would be agitprop in the hands of the proverbial little guy or Adbusters, but coming from a company raking in something around $20,000,000 annually - in part off the glossy displays at that very show - it's foolish and puerile.

Of course, that's hardly breaking new ground for Gizmodo. Blech.
posted by coolhappysteve at 6:52 PM on January 10, 2008


Made me cringe and giggle at the same time.

I've worked the floor of a trade show, and while this is pretty spectacular as pranks go, the booths are prepared to deal with some fraction of the general public doing anything they can get away with. Turning the TV off remotely is nothing compared to childish crap like deliberately bringing down the computers driving the demos, or stealing cables.

Gizmodo missed a great opportunity to selectively turn off screens on the Dish Network wall to leave a message. That would have turned my ambivalence to respect.
posted by ardgedee at 6:52 PM on January 10, 2008


Fucking with the TVs during a presentation?

a presentation about how awesome the TVs are. in other words, a sales pitch. you could even go so far as to say it was an advertisement.


So, Circuit City would be another clever a place to take TV-B-Gone to? Malarky.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 6:55 PM on January 10, 2008


Yeah. I gotta get me one.

You are dismissed.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 6:56 PM on January 10, 2008


I loved it. The only thing that would be funnier would be if someone at Microsoft made the blue screen of death appear during Bill Gates's presentation.
posted by TedW at 6:57 PM on January 10, 2008


57 channels and nothing's on
posted by chibikeandy at 7:03 PM on January 10, 2008


This may just have something to do with the rumor that Denton is looking to buyout Engadget and make that the Gawker media gadget blog.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 7:03 PM on January 10, 2008


Yes, silly, pointless, juvenile, yet smile-inducing. If someone pulled it on me, I'd find it funny; I've had comparable (accidental) technology SNAFUs in the middle of teaching a class, and if you just fight off that initial impulse to panic and scurry, it's pretty amusing, and nobody dies.

I find the concept of watching people at an electronics show try to function for a few minutes without electronics is absurdly enjoyable. It's not as if Gizmodo took down the whole show or destroyed the products, for heaven's sake.
posted by FelliniBlank at 7:09 PM on January 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


It's no different than any other use of a TV-B-Gone.
posted by "Tex" Connor and the Wily Roundup Boys at 7:13 PM on January 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Of course you realize this means war.
posted by humannaire at 7:20 PM on January 10, 2008


Jesus. Fuck the industry. CES is such a huge wank-fest anyway. This was funny. Juvenile, yes, but funny. One would think that, in a hall full of nerds, someone would have thought to disable the IR ports on the displays.
posted by Thorzdad at 7:26 PM on January 10, 2008


Yeah, I vote for shitty and lame. I remember reading about these when I was younger and simpler and Adbusters was blowing my mind... I think it's at least arguably cool to use 'em in airports and sports bars and to reclaim public spaces for human interaction.... but there's no reclaiming going on in a space specifically chosen and fitted out for people who want to learn about new electronic shit. Given that Gizmodo has essentially the same mission as the trade show, I can't see how it's anything other than dickheaded.
posted by moxiedoll at 7:26 PM on January 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Ha, they can't ban gizmodo. Them and engadget is it for electronics coverage online.

So maybe this was gizmodo making that point? "See, we can fuck with you but you can't fuck with us. And we're 'just a bunch of bloggers.'" If so, that ups the ante a bit.
posted by treepour at 7:45 PM on January 10, 2008


I carry a TV-B-Gone everywhere. I don't use it often, but I'm happy to have one when I need it.
posted by streetdreams at 7:46 PM on January 10, 2008


Assholes.
posted by ericb at 7:55 PM on January 10, 2008


So you're showing your latest gee-wiz BIG screen teevee at the consumer technology industry's biggest, baddest trade show in the West. It doesn't cross your mind that maybe blocking the IR port on your goodies might be a good prophylactic measure?

Dorks.

Shame on Gizmodo.

But, geez... Dorks the lot of you.
posted by deCadmus at 7:56 PM on January 10, 2008


Ha, they can't ban gizmodo. Them and engadget is it for electronics coverage online.

OH, RLY?
posted by ericb at 8:04 PM on January 10, 2008


Well, there is cnet. They count. The others are just newspapers.
posted by smackfu at 8:34 PM on January 10, 2008


It was stupid, but the way people are talking, you'd think they were smearing feces on peoples' faces. Yeesh.
posted by Pope Guilty at 8:35 PM on January 10, 2008


Yeah these guys were total assholes! Not like the guys who set up the presentations and should've been "cutting edge" to know enough about the "tv-b-gone" and done something as simple as put a piece of electrical tape over the IR sensor on the displays, or figured out quickly that someone was messing with them and simply put their thumb over it.

Survival of the geekiest, I says.

don't tv-b-gone me bro!
posted by jcterminal at 8:59 PM on January 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Of course, all the negative publicity Gizmodo gets will simply be publicity for the teevee manufacturers, so in essence, I think the two zero out.

Again, black electrical tape will be utilized to stave this off in the future.
posted by Chuffy at 9:00 PM on January 10, 2008


It's interesting to think that they could have edited out the presenter parts, which did seem a bit mean, and left in the wall of screen parts, and almost everyone would have loved it with no reservations.
posted by smackfu at 9:08 PM on January 10, 2008


Disruptive technology upsets the status quo, that's what it does. It was juvenile to use TV-B-Gone at CES but it was also a powerful statement about a shift in the balance of power between producers and consumers that's still in its early days. Open source hardware is maybe 10-15 years behind open source software, it's only just begun to show its power to disrupt culture & society. Today it's turning off TVs and cellphones, in a few years it could be opening up some platform that's necessary for regaining our rapidly dwindling freedoms. See the forest, not the trees.

(disclaimer: one of the producers of the TV-B-Gone is an ex-girlfriend, so I may be biased)
posted by scalefree at 9:17 PM on January 10, 2008


What - so now the revolution won't be televised?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 9:21 PM on January 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


TeeVees are a distraction from cool gadgets. Funny no one here thought of that angle. If all the effort that goes into the latest greatest teevee went in to knew cool stuff, the world would be a much better place.
posted by Goofyy at 9:34 PM on January 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


(where knew = new, obviously)
posted by Goofyy at 9:35 PM on January 10, 2008


OH NOES ADVERTISEMENTS WERE DISRUPTED!

Do you guys also get pissed off when people graffiti the various ads in subway stations?

The slippery slope argument: if they keep this up eventually all TVs will be outfitted with anti-TV-B-Gone technology/black electrical tape, thus making it truly impossible to sit in an airport lounge, checkout line, or doctor's waiting room in peace.


There's this other technology, called a rock.

The whole hypocrisy angle is interesting, though - to my understanding, not that I read it, this is basically an internet blog about sucking Motorola et al.'s cocks about the latest $300 thing that's $2 greater than the $300 thing you bought six months ago, but now they're also throwing rocks at Motorola?
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 9:49 PM on January 10, 2008


Now, the revolution will be podcast. Or podcasted. Or podcastrated.
posted by wendell at 10:25 PM on January 10, 2008


I look forward to the next installment, where MAKE supplies Gizmodo with laser pointers, which they carry with them and use at movie theaters and live theater shows. Hilarious!
posted by davejay at 10:28 PM on January 10, 2008


OK, maybe someone can help me out here.

TV B Gone? That's... like... a universal remote, right?

Basically, one of these, except minus every button except the power button?

WOW U GYZ R L33T!
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 10:29 PM on January 10, 2008


Wow, I didn't know Sony made a universal remote for a low low price of 24.95! Thanks, C_D I think I'll run out to buy one right now!
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 10:53 PM on January 10, 2008


What sucks about this prank is that techs spent maybe 2-3 very long days setting up these displays. I know because I've had to do it. Plenty of things go awry and wrong for these people at CES; the last thing they deserve is to have more shit piled on them.
posted by Brocktoon at 11:04 PM on January 10, 2008


thus making it truly impossible to sit in an airport lounge, checkout line, or doctor's waiting room in peace.

If only I had eyelids and headphones! That aside, dick move (because I'm telling you all something you didn't already know.)
posted by sysinfo at 11:20 PM on January 10, 2008


Unintentionally political, but also kind of tepid. All the tv's go out in one location, then they move on and they go out somewhere else.

What they really needed was that thing from that movie that generated an electro-magnetic pulse big enough to shit-can the whole show. Now that wouldda showd 'em. Unintentionally, of course, but it wouldda showd 'em nonetheless.
posted by From Bklyn at 12:27 AM on January 11, 2008


OH NOES ADVERTISEMENTS WERE DISRUPTED!

Normally I would agree...except for the little fact that everybody was sitting there willingly expecting to see a presentation. Not to mention the people trying to enjoy a game of Guitar Hero or Link's Crossbow also had their televisions turned off.

Not that I care. I may have to pick one of those up, I think those clickers are for sale over at ThinkGeek
posted by P.o.B. at 12:30 AM on January 11, 2008


I think the prank was lame. But I want one of those gadgets for when I visit my father. I don't think he's turned off the television since 1978.
posted by miss lynnster at 2:13 AM on January 11, 2008


"When TV-B-Gones first started making the rounds, I figured they were primarily electronic firecrackers for assholes and masturbatory aids for passive-aggressive self-obsessed entitled moralizers. This has done nothing to alter that opinion."

"it was also a powerful statement about a shift in the balance of power between producers and consumers that's still in its early days. Open source hardware is maybe 10-15 years behind open source software, it's only just begun to show its power to disrupt culture & society. Today it's turning off TVs and cellphones, in a few years it could be opening up some platform that's necessary for regaining our rapidly dwindling freedoms. See the forest, not the trees."

HMM. Which of these comments describes the other?
posted by blacklite at 3:26 AM on January 11, 2008


What a bunch of dipshits. One upside of the impending "Bubble Burst 2.0" will be the pleasure I will get when I read that Nick Denton has declared bankruptcy, and his stable of hipster jackasses are forced to go out and get real jobs - as electronics company sales reps, perhaps.
posted by Optamystic at 3:35 AM on January 11, 2008


Unfailing politeness and consideration are the hallmarks of professional journalists; one can be a hardass and still be polite. This was neither, and by association Gizmodo are not. If you come to a cocktail party and act like a chimpanzee, you won't get invited back to many cocktail parties in the future, unless they have a cage or moated island in the swimming pool set aside for you. Further, since the whole point of going to CES is to look at presentations that were prepared for you, that you came to CES to see, fucking with them via TVBGone is like spitting on a proferred handshake.

I think the CES show rules need to be amended to say "all attendees must be and act 16 years of age or older".
posted by seanmpuckett at 4:36 AM on January 11, 2008 [1 favorite]


So, Circuit City would be another clever a place to take TV-B-Gone to? Malarky.

I have done this. I have not made a video and posted it to YouTube, because I'm fully aware that I am, in fact, a passive-aggressive self-obsessed entitled moralizer. But I'm not sure I can express the little shiver of joy that you get from watching a 20-foot wall of screen blank out in random order, and the ensuing 30 seconds of chaos.

However, the batteries on those little fuckers don't last long enough to make an afternoon out of it, and you can't change 'em without snapping the case. Still, on net, they're the passive-aggressive's dream.
posted by Mayor West at 5:19 AM on January 11, 2008


Basically, one of these, except minus every button except the power button?

Designed & built as homebrew hardware that's extensible & customizable, in this case boosting the power well beyond what anything you can buy in Walmart could do. It was a childish act but it was also a demonstration of the power of open source hardware: "you're not the only ones who can control your systems. So can we."
posted by scalefree at 8:32 AM on January 11, 2008


I do think TV-B-Gones have a legitimate use. Back in Statesboro, most restaurants have Fox News on, and some even pretend they can't do anything about if asked to turn the channel. Sometimes they even play it loudly. In a situation like that, I think a TBG is suitable.

This? Funny, but yeah, a bit obnoxious.
posted by JHarris at 6:27 PM on January 11, 2008


"Ha, they can't ban gizmodo."

Oh, they can.. and they did.

http://www.news.com/8301-10784_3-9849168-7.html

"We have been informed of inappropriate behavior on the show floor by a credentialed media attendee from the Web site Gizmodo, owned by Gawker Media. Specifically, the Gizmodo staffer interfered with the exhibitor booth operations of numerous companies, including disrupting at least one press event. The Gizmodo staffer violated the terms of CES media credentials and caused harm to CES exhibitors. This Gizmodo staffer has been identified and will be barred from attending any future CES events. Additional sanctions against Gizmodo and Gawker Media are under discussion."
posted by drstein at 8:26 PM on January 11, 2008


David Pogue | New York Times: Over the Line at C.E.S.
posted by ericb at 9:35 AM on January 12, 2008


“Gawker Media boss Nick Denton justified [Gizmodo blogger Richard] Blakeley's behavior by pointing to a Gizmodo post that listed the reasons why C.E.S. is ‘a disgusting, bloated beast oozing everything that makes this industry horrible.’

If that's the case, why send his bloggers to the event at all?

Indeed, far from criticizing his blogger's behavior, Denton praised it, portraying the action as a kind of courageous, stick-it-to-the-man act of Gonzo-style mischief. And Denton - always on the lookout for ways to attack his enemies - couldn't resist throwing in a dig at Cnet in the process.

‘I'd rather the Gizmodo team ran into trouble now and then,’ Denton told Silicon Alley Insider's Peter Kafka. ‘Better that than the bland compliance to consumer electronics press releases that makes sites like Cnet's so boring.’

For Denton, apparently, little is off limits in his quest to drive page views at his blogs - which the stunt unquestionably did.

Of course, if all of Gizmodo - a gadget blog - ends up being banned from next year's C.E.S., the site would not have access to the largest gadget trade show in the world.”*
posted by ericb at 9:42 AM on January 12, 2008


This Gizmodo staffer has been identified and will be barred from attending any future CES events. Additional sanctions against Gizmodo and Gawker Media are under discussion."

"Additional sanctions"??? They already used their only big gun, banning them. Not that I think that ban will stick. There are 12 months for everyone to forget about this before the next CES, and they won't issue a press release when they un-bar them. CES just needed to appease their big corporate customers who are probably not happy to be made fools of.
posted by smackfu at 10:24 AM on January 12, 2008


They already used their only big gun, banning them.

You mean banning "him." CEA has so far only banned Richard Blakeley from attending CES in the future. CEA has yet to determine if they want/will take more action against Gizmodo/Gawker.
posted by ericb at 11:03 AM on January 12, 2008


Gizmodo's one mistake was copping to it. If they had just linked to the video claiming it was from from an "anonymous contributor", they would have got away with the pranks.
posted by Down10 at 11:21 AM on January 12, 2008


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