11 Points

11 Photos of Older Folks Charmingly Confused by Technology
written by Sam Greenspan

I've been very careful when I talk about Snapchat, because I'm afraid it's the first piece of technology that shows my age. My first day of messing around with it, I found myself saying, "I wish they just had a few more buttons." I mean, I grew up in a design era where navigation was supposed to be straightforward. Now it's all blind swiping and, if there are buttons, they're unlabeled. It's untoward.

See what I mean? I just aged 30 years with that paragraph.

Which means... these are my people.

I gathered together 11 pictures that show older people's charmingly befuddled interactions with modern technology. Just assume the 12th is me using Snapchat. (And the 13th will be me one day trying to use Slack.)
  1. The accidental selfie.



    This woman was trying to take a photo at the Olympics two years ago, but apparently she'd never used the camera before. (Possibly any camera?) It's stunning how good her eye looks on the screen, though -- look at the zoom on that thing. Imagine how good of a photo she could've taken of the action.

  2. Adventures in Facebook, Part 1.



    This entire list could've easily been nothing but screenshots of kids interacting with their parents on Facebook, but this is one of my favorites. It's like a modern, less depressing version of Cats in the Cradle.

  3. Please apply.



    I'm guessing only, like, one guy was actually able to type in that full URL and apply; look at all those random "%2C31"-type strings. Even if you took the time to type it in, the odds are overwhelming you'd have a typo. So whoever successfully typed in the URL deserves the job, just on that alone. But really, who would take the time to transcribe a long web address like that?

  4. A "screenshot."



    This person's mom didn't know how to take a screenshot of the recipe, so she made a photocopy of her phone instead and sent it to him. I assume through the mail, because deep down she must've appreciated the quality of the bit.

  5. How to use a Kindle.



    When you get sick of trying to read ebooks and go back to real books, what becomes of the Kindle? It becomes a bookmark. (Side note: the "Kindle Paperwhite" feels awfully close to "paperweight," right?)

  6. One way to zoom.



    This method might be more convenient than figuring out how to zoom in on the screen. Or perhaps this guy is a detective? And while I'm sitting here poking light fun at him, this is the moment he cracked a case?

  7. Why is it always 10:24 A.M.?



    These photos are from a girl whose grandma couldn't figure out why her cell phone was permanently stuck on 10:24 A.M. Her granddaughter solved the problem by removing the sticker. (Not to get too morbid, but do you think for a moment, the grandma wondered if she'd passed away at 10:24 A.M., and now she was a ghost, floating around with time stuck there forever? I know that's what I would've thought.)

  8. The day Facebook became self-aware?



    I like the full progression of this dialogue, from antecedent to clarification to blame shifting. It's really the perfect intergenerational Facebook dance.

  9. This technology isn't even that modern.



    Well, someone's getting prank called when these people try to use the cordless phone to change the channel.

  10. Selfie stick confusion.



    It really defeats the purpose of a selfie stick when a non-Bluetooth camera leads to a second person getting involved. Almost like, I don't know, that woman could've just held the camera without the stick.

  11. Grandma's favorite links.



    Those are links to a photo of butterflies from National Geographic, a Time article on Pablo Picasso, a drawing of several famous singers in the National Portrait Gallery and The Telegraph's list of the 25 best Ray Charles songs. Yes, I took the time to type them out (even that crazy third one). Maybe I should've applied for that government job in 2013.


This post was originally published on Friday, July 22, 2016 at 11:00:00 AM under the category Web & Tech.

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