Nine Similarities Between Car Blogs and Gadget Blogs
In addition to my robust obsession with cars, I’m also very much a fan of new technology. Be it computers, cell phones, wristwatches that wash dishes, or high-powered laser staplers, I’m interested. To keep up to date (especially since I am more of a gadget window shopper), I’m a frequent visitor at a number of the gadget blogs on the web. You might be surprised (though probably not) at the similar themes between these gadget blogs and their commenters with the car blogging community. I’ve got nine of ’em.
1. Endless supply of leaked images of upcoming products. The images are usually low quality, blurry, low resolution, and supposedly from a distant country. They are frequently accused of being fakes or photochops. Usually destroy most of the hype by bludgeoning readers with boredom and frustration.
Cars: Sports cars, including but not limited to the Nissan GT-R, Chevy Camaro, and Dodge Challenger.
Gadgets: Every phone, computer, and Apple product.
Bonus!: Comments that are marginally related, blanket views of the brand (I hate Chevy).
2. Circular Outsourcing Debate. Invariably a “site of manufacture” issue arises, leading to a meandering and unresolvable debate about any commerce taking place outside of the U.S. Often leads to jingoistic — even borderline bigoted — comments about other countries.
Cars: “Buy GM, Ford, or Chrysler, or watch your children starve.”
Gadgets: “I hate call centers where the workers have a hint of an accent.”
3. New major technology is the great Satan. The world’s problems, from hunger to ethnic cleansing, pale in comparison to what really matters: manufacturers are cramming a new system down my throat and I will expend huge sums of money and effort to avoid it. Workarounds, regardless of the difficulty and risk, are welcomed.
Cars: iDrive, other nav systems
Gadgets: Windows Vista
4. Readers claim to have identified the best brand in the industry. They further state that they intend only to buy this brand, describe their flawless ownership experience of the brand’s products, longevity, overall value, and general joie de vivre.
5. Readers hate this brand, and its customers, who the readers would take delight in turning cannibal on, given the opportunity. What’s more, their products are overpriced, the customer service is horrendous, the quality is poor, and devotees of this brand are foolish zombies that deserve to be dropped out of a helicopter, naked, into the Canadian wilderness.
6. News About Alternative Energy Idea/Program/Product/Research
Cars: Nuclear is the answer
Gadgets: Nuclear is the answer
7. The bad price patrol. These are commenters for whom no product, ever, will be cheap enough. It’s not necessarily that they can’t afford something (in fact, many will point out that they could afford to buy whatever car/gadget they want, ten times over, in cash), but whatever the retail price is, that’s absurd. They will conclude by either sarcastically thanking the seller or by repeating that they plant to stick with whatever comparable product they currently have.
Cars: “They want $15,000 for that new 800 horsepower sports car that gets 50 mpg? What a rip off. I’ll just have a Honda Fit, thank you. Or stay with my 1983 Peugeot 505 wagon. And keep in mind, I’m not poor. I almost bought a Maybach instead of my Peugeot.”
Gadgets: “Wait wait, the service is an ADDITIONAL $3/month? And the device doesn’t have Draft-N wireless? What kind of 1983-reminiscent joke is that? I’ll just stick with my Nokia N95.”
8. “I refuse to answer the question because this is bullshit.”
Cars: What should Alan Mulally drive to DC? Screw Alan Mulally, his Lexus, his company, and every POS that Ford makes.
Gadgets: How would you improve X product? Use a sledgehammer to turn it into powder.
9. Dealbreakers. These are issues around which people are willing to completely alter their purchase. It’s not always that they refuse to buy something because it emits toxic fumes. Rather, there is a feature that is absolutely non-negotiable. Such people often like to trumpet “No _____, no buy” to show their steadfast resolve.
Gadgets: DRM-Free/or Linux capability
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