a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: The Dangers of Dictation

Friday, June 18, 2021

The Dangers of Dictation

SUMMARY: Don't let this happen to you
My comment responding to a friend's comment on FB June 16, 2021

I almost did a terrible, terrible thing. 


After I have finished eating something, depending on what the food was and how much is left in my dish or bowl or plate, I might let Zorro know that it is available for him to lick.

Also background: 

I typically dictate into my phone rather than trying to type responses. 

So I was about to respond to your comment here. I had just finished the last of the ice cream.  After I finished scraping as much as I could out of the ice cream container, I set it aside until Zorro should show up at some point. 

Then I sat back to respond to your comment. I hit the write-a-reply spot and clicked the dictation microphone. That was about the time Zorro appeared and looked expectantly at me. So I stood up with the ice cream container and wandered off to set it down someplace for him to enjoy. 

A while later, I wandered back and picked up my phone and saw that there was text waiting for me to send to you; I do this too often: put in an answer and then don't hit Send. So I almost hit send until I realized that the text said--

 “hello do you want to lick my thing”

My head just about exploded thinking: Had I been hacked? Someone playing a crude joke on me?  And then I realized: Yep, forgot that dictation was turned on and started talking to the dog… about my ice cream container.


Technology is a dangerous thing.

I have avoided or not quite avoided similar issues SO VERY MANY TIMES.  There was the time, for example, that I think I actually clicked Send after dictating something like, "I want to wish luck to all my agility friends this weekend" and discovered to my horror that it had turned into "I want to [something that rhymes with luck] all my agility friends..." and fixed it before (I think) anyone noticed.)

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