Distracted driving has been one of the top priorities of Ray LaHood, the current U.S. Secretary of Transportation. Taking over the Internet and invading people’s lives in every way possible has been one of the top priorities of Facebook, a popular social website.
So what happens when those two priorities clash? Well, you start seeing ridiculous things like the new system being developed by GM’s OnStar division that would allow drivers to record audio updates that would be posted to their Facebook page. Drivers could also hear other status updates read to them by a computer-generated voice.
Yep, that’s just what we need – to have some creepy robot voice telling us what Bubba Joe had for breakfast this morning as we drive down the highway at 70 miles per hour. Because, you know, that information is oh so critical to have at that exact moment.
I’m not putting Facebook down, mind you. I’m on there myself, probably more than I should be. But something about this just seems like a really bad idea, even if it is hands free. Imagine all of the road rage out there on the highways finding its way to Facebook.
I was probably one of the last people on earth to own a cell phone. I didn’t have my first one until 2004. I just never saw the point of owning one. Look, if someone needs to get in touch with me they can leave a message at my home phone or my office phone, right? Isn’t that enough? Or they could also e-mail me or, heaven forbid, stop by to see me in person.
But I eventually caved in and got one and now, well, I won’t say I can’t live without it because I could throw the damn thing away tomorrow and, with a few adjustments, probably survive just fine. But I do use it a lot more than I thought I would. I just bring up my reasons for not owning a cell phone because I think they pretty well sum up my feelings about this OnStar/Facebook thing.
I update my Facebook status maybe two or three times a week, usually only when I think of something good to put up there. I’m not one of those people who has to update every second of every day. I like to actually put some thought into what I’m putting up there. I know, I know. Silly Terry. The Internet isn’t about thinking. It’s about posting first and regretting it later.
There are already plenty of idiots out on the road who aren’t paying attention to what they are doing. There are already plenty of those on the Internet, too. Do we really want to introduce more devices into cars and trucks that will just make both of those places even worse?