08 February 2007

iPod Oblivion

The people of walking cities such as NYC have something new on their minds...
A New York state senator has announced his plan to introduce legislation that would ban the use of electronic devices such as iPods, BlackBerrys and cell phones while crossing streets in major cities. [continue article]

Carl Kruger has coined the term iPod oblivion and declared it evil. New York Times writer Tom Zeller Jr. describes Kruger's phrase as "the state of unawareness induced by use of the music device in public places" and a "self-induced stupor." A few pedestrian deaths linked to iPod oblivion in Kruger's NYC borough has him up in arms, proposing a $100 fine per offense.

A reality is that the American individual's world is becoming more and more dependent on technology and that Kruger's action may best be interpreted as early action. Two deaths now may not seem significant, however by the time we are all wearing personal computers in the corners of our sunglasses and doing financial transactions WHILE talking to Mom on the phone AND walking Fido, the e-oblivion quota may be of a totally different proportion.

If this law does come to fruition anytime soon, my guess is that it will be minimally enforced--quite similar to the current NYS law regarding cell phone usage while driving.


Matthew said...

This is just another ridiculous attempt of "the man" trying to keep us down. This could be even more ridiculous than the current cell-phone ban while driving law. I'm pretty sure just as many people are killed applying makeup, changing the radio station, drinking coffee, playing with a gps navigation system...the list could go on and on.

J. Christy Wareham said...

I'm an inveterate mp3-player user myself, and I really am not as aware of what's going on around me while listening to podcasts. I run on county roads every day, and I am able even to hear cars approaching from behind. That, though, only because the sound in my ears is people talking, which is quiet and leaves lots quiet spaces between words. If I have loud music on, I can't hear much of anything. I wouldn't mind giving up the music for the general safety and well-being of all, but I'd hate to give up the talk show podcasts. Don't know how you'd enforce a thing like that.

Post a Comment