Sunday, May 3, 2009

Things that make you go hmm...

Every so often something will catch my attention that makes me wonder what on earth the person responsible was thinking. Some of these things are simply obnoxious and others seem wildly inappropriate. Yet somehow, they are supposed to pass as being cool, or professional, or even creative. Here are a couple of things I came across today:

Wikipedia's use of the word "orphan" in regards to Wikipedia articles. According to Wikipedia, an orphan is "A page with no links from other pages." Wikipedia decided that it was okay to use the word "orphan" to describe an isolated article. Maybe I'm just being a bit sensitive here, but doesn't it seem a bit odd to use that word? What if an actual orphan wants to look up something on Wikipedia and sees the following message:

"This article is an orphan, as few or no other articles link to it. Please introduce links to this page from other articles related to it." 

That orphan will now cry because Wikipedia has just reminded him or her that he or she has few or no links. Just when he or she overcomes the painful memories and is able to scroll down the page, this heading appears:

"Suggestions for how to de-orphan an article"

The other thing appeared BBC's website, an article entitled, "Are there women paedophiles?" 
I don't want to get into the subject matter of the article, but hasn't that question already been answered? Click on the link and take a look at the picture BBC decided to use for the article. It's a blonde woman and a possibly Asian boy walking down a beach. They are walking away from us so we can't see their faces. What do I find creepiest? Her arm is around his neck and her sleeve is positioned in such a manner that we can't see her hand. WTF BBC? Clearly the photo suggests that this is not supposed to be a mother and son walking down the beach. But why would a paedophile be going for what almost looks like a romantic stroll down the beach with her 9 year old hottie? Can you imagine being the people posing for this picture?

"Now, yes! Hold that position, that's perfect. Just put your arm around his neck but don't pull him too close! Oh, what's this for? Um, you know, something about paedophilia." 

The kid will look at this picture many years from now and have nightmares. But are there women paedophiles? Maybe. Perhaps Wikipedia will have an orphan on it. 

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