Sunday, January 23, 2011

Interweb Confusion

Based on the kind of communication I’ve experienced I’ve come to the conclusion that the Internet is kind of like a bar. There are people from all different walks of life, it’s really too dark to see anybody’s face, and everybody is drunk.

There is no filter on the Internet, people can just say whatever they want. Add into the fact that there are tons of people spamming you; the confusion of tone in emails and typos, there is nothing but nonsense in store for you every single time you log on to the Internet. Sometimes it’s intentional, sometimes it’s not, but it’s almost always ridiculous.

I received one of my favorite spam emails recently. Not to brag but I regularly receive emails from women in other countries looking to start a relationship with me. I mean rumors of my charms have obviously spread far and wide over the web. Why else would I receive the following email?


My name is Anastasia.
I want to search my love. I want to search the man for long relations. I want to have serious relations and the real love. Therefore if you do not want it that you should not answer my message. Maybe learning more about each other we can have real relations. I shall write more about myself and send you my photo if you will interest on my letter.

You can answer me to my
Earlier I do not use dating service, therefore I want excuse for you if I have made it not good.

I hope to speak with you soon,

I had to laugh because even though Anastasia was probably a robot, she still knew that what men really want is “long relations” whatever that means. It made me think of an email I got back when I still worked at the magazine.

I was a part of a small department that was not hiring at the time. We received a job application directly to our department from a young woman who lived in Georgia… the country. Granted this young woman wasn’t applying for a particular position, she just sent us an email unsolicited. It was quite a, let’s say “unique” approach.

The email included a resume that was a hodge podge of very confusing schooling and experience. Not only because all of her experience was from Georgia, but also because her English was beyond awful. It was like trying to decipher an Eastern European puzzle.

Oh and she included 2 pictures of herself.  In a bathing suit. Which made me believe she either didn’t know what we did, or, the job application process was extremely different in Georgia.

We might have ruled it out as a simple spam had she not applied 2 more times. We didn’t respond because, well, what do you say to a woman in a bikini from another country that doesn’t speak English?

Sorry, you don’t have 1 single qualification.

But sometimes our communication gets skewed because we try and pass it through one too many filters. My favorite example of this is my experience with Google Voice.

For those of you who don’t know, Google Voice is a free service that translates your voicemails and sends it to you in an email and/or a text message.

I admire Google’s advances in all things Internet. But I must say that their advances in speech recognition are slightly behind. Instead of helping me to understand what the voicemail actually says, it just makes me laugh. Here are a few examples of voicemails (according to Google Voice) that I have received.

Office attacks you back. I think like 2 minutes.

I’ve had bad days at work, but my entire office has never attacked me before. And I had never attacked it. This was a false alarm.

Hey Ricketts

Hands down the worst mispronunciation of my first name. Ever.

R. E. T. V I totally with the big grid from 1,008 9 Y contact with the kind of highly disappointments. It's like read something your time now. We have a fact. So I don't know if you have. Maybe later. My name is HI. Thank you, such. Okay, good to everybody Obviously, the speed about your What your area. I'm concerned, since I read about it. I don't talk to you. I hope you are internet possibly happened. And hey. Seriously, hope you have a great birthday. Her, Cleo soon. If I see.

The only thing I managed to gather from this lengthy email was that it was my birthday. Even though I’m not sure I even got this on my birthday.

A lot of wonderful please and fabulous trip lots of putty in your future.

Lots of putty in my future? That sounds like a fortune cookie from a first grader’s birthday party.

8 minutes of ceiling.

Oh… OK.

I know if you're still gonna be crazy in that. So I totally get that Shannon who. If you are now have a free time. Anyway, call me, feel free. Otherwise, you can just chat when you look after 10. Now I'm going to so excited for you and I can't wait to read your baby. So Arthur, I'm if for some reason you could give me if I get from now. I read it on my 3 on a flight on Thursday and hit the meaning of her the changes. I'm sure I can get the gist of it. So think about it. Consider it. I'm pretty. I'd like to. Thanks.

My baby? I don’t have a baby. Nor would I want someone to “read” it. And I am glad you are pretty. This is key to friendship.

I feel like I've had like 22 batteries in South.

Don’t we all.

It seems the longer the voicemail the more absolutely incomprehensible it gets. Its almost like the machine just says, oh screw it, there’s no way I’m going to get all of this. But I still use it, because it makes me laugh.

I think a voicemail I actually left for my friend actually sums it up best.

Friday refuse. I meet you. I'm trying to teach english well. There's a feeling. Pretty good.

I’m not sure what that feeling is but as long as it is pretty good, well, I’ll have no need for those long relations.


A(nonymous) said...

I can't wait til "There's a feeling. Pretty good." becomes its own confusing internet meme.
Probably featuring a DayGlo background and the head of some irate animal.

Iqbal Ismail said...

God, I just can't say anymore about the spam. It is so stupid. I often get the "need help to transfer a huge load of money" scam. I just don't know what these guys are thinking.

Do you assume we will help you just because you mentioned a country who is going through war and with citizens of poor English but yet is equipped with the Internet? I guess not.

I've never tried Google Voice before, nor have I heard about it. Lucky me. Or I might just screwed up my English too and send emails to anonymous people wanting to build a "long relations"

Sweta said...

I often win obscene amounts of money.But I'm still living with my parents and take a bus to school.Lol Google Voice is a scream.I never used it but the translations were brilliant,Ricketts.

Caro said...

bbAHAHAHHAah. I love google voice. I am LOLing at my depresso desk. PS: 8 minutes of ceiling...I smell either a new bandname for your list OR a new hit for Dr. Fun & The Sick Beats.

Caro said...

ps I am aware Band and Name are 2 separate words

Krysten @ After 'I Do' said...

I am totally going to use Google Voice right now. It's way too hilarious not to!

Nancy said...

I had one the other day that wanted to send me $7,000 a week until some huge sum was paid in full - from Western Union - I just had to send $220 to update our file...

The scary thing was we sent money Western Union to youngest daughter when she lost her one and only form of money the first day in Thailand. Now we get a spam email. Hmmmm

Caroline B said...

I get the offers from Eastern European young ladies too....I often wonder what would happen if I replied as myself, a mature woman, and asked if they'd like to be my friend....

DeepSeaMuse said...

Hilarious! Thanks for the laugh :)

Cathy said...

You crack me up! Google 411 is also terrible at speech recognition. I called and asked for "Selma Toyota" and it wanted to connect me to "China Boats". I said, "No!" It said, "Thank you - I'll connect you!"

DangGina said...

I've never been more confused in my life.

I'm lovin' the email from Anastasia though! Lucky ducky! Woo-woo! That's one hot robot!