Sunday, February 13, 2011

1000 Ways to Destroy your Kindle

Where's the disclaimer? or Don't try this at home, or anywhere else!

I own a Kindle- this version, in fact. I love it. I take it everywhere I think I will have a chance to do some reading. It was a birthday present last August, which makes it even better because I didn't have to pay for it. However, I assume full responsibility for the way I treat my Kindle, and understand that if anything happens to it, I will have to replace it myself.

So whenever I see this commercial, I simultaneously cringe and shake my head at the utter stupidity that's on my screen. Kindles are very light, and anyone who has ever picked one up doesn't need to be told that they are quite fragile. They consist of glass and hard plastic "protecting" very sensitive, fragile electronics. So what the hell are these idiots doing with their Kindles? They are using them in very close proximity to water and sand. On gym machines and crowded subways, where one slip or bump is going to cause it to fall to the ground, where it could be stepped on and instantly destroyed. One guy gives a Kindle as a gift and doesn't even keep it in the damn box it came in- here it is, honey, as if you couldn't see what it was through the superfluous red ribbon, I've even turned it on already for you, let's check first to see if my addle-brained cluelessness didn't result in a scratched screen. And don't get me started on the guy who slips his Kindle into his back pocket- hey, great idea, buddy. Just don't forget it's there, or the first time you sit down you'll be very glad that they now sell for "only" $139.

Here's what I don't get- Amazon sells covers for Kindles. Lots of them, in different colors. They are a little pricey, but I can't imagine taking my Kindle out of the house without one. Even with a cover, I wouldn't bring it to the beach or near a pool- not until they make a waterproof cover for my version. Maybe not even then.

Is Amazon actually being so craven as to encourage people to abuse their Kindles, so that they will have to replace them faster? I'm willing to concede that three dry Cheerios won't damage the Kindle. But I can't IMAGINE letting a dog lick it. Or carrying it in a bike basket like that. Or putting it at risk of being sat on.

If Amazon isn't encouraging people to use their Kindles in a reckless manner, I just don't understand how they can responsibly misrepresent the device's portability like this. Yes, you can use your Kindle without a cover. Yes, you can carry it around with you everywhere you go, again without a cover. But please, DON'T. Unless you want to go through the hassle of buying another one, and probably sooner rather than later.


  1. I'm torn on the whole owning a Kindle thing myself. I love carrying around books and I love having books, but I also think I'd get more reading done on a Kindle because its lighter than a book... but the big thing is the price- at this point in my life, that's a huge amount of money.

    That said, I always figured they were like small computers- fragile. I sure wouldn't fling my imaginary Kindle around like that. And I damn sure wouldn't let a toddler lay his sticky fingers on it!

    I'd be afraid to carry one inside my purse (which is a small messenger bag) because I sling it across my body (a habit I got into from when I walked with two canes) and I bump into things. I could just see me working my way through a small crowd, sit down and pick up my Kindle and finding the screen cracked from an overzealous hip-check getting through said crowd.

    I don't even own a Kindle and I'm cringing right along with you, sir.

  2. I have a faux-leather cover for mine- I think I paid $14 for it- and I'm nowhere near as obsessive about safety as I thought I would be. I jam it into my soft briefcase in between exams and gradebooks without a second thought.

    Without a cover? It didn't leave my bedroom until I got one. The people in this commercial are just insane- or made of money.

  3. I'm with Pahz on this; it's sort of horrifying to see a delicate and expensive piece of equipment treated so cavalierly. Not only do they not grow on trees, the wreckage tends to, well, pile up; I know this because every so often, I come across the remnants of a discarded cell phone or MP3 player lying on the ground and muttering that it must be nice to have money to throw around.

  4. Dreaded, I just hope most of those phones were once owned by preteens with a "I'll buy you this if I can be one of your 834 Facebook Friends" parent. Because that's a slightly less repulsive thought than imagining idiot "adults" tossing around electronics like Kleenex.

  5. (Please note that one Kindle in this commercial is being pulled out of a junk drawer- and it's screen saver has not been activated (in fact, we don't see a single screen saver in this entire commercial It only takes about two minutes of inactivity for it to be set off- so was the Kindle in that drawer for only a minute or so before being pulled out again? Sounds kind of obsessive to me.)

    We must also believe that the person on the bicycle is reading that book while pedaling. Scary.

  6. You know, when you create an item that will go traveling, like an I-phone or an E-Reader then it should be reasonably durable (except getting dunked in water).

    The new Kindle is too delicate for travel. If you pile anything heavy on it, it will break. If you sit on it, the pressure doesn't crack the screen or frame but it messes up the E-Ink and only half the text will show.

    This item should be considered as delicate as a pair of eye glasses. Keep it in your purse and for guys, in a brief case, or whatever with a case.

    Even then, if you drop it, you run the risk of the E-ink screwing up. Poor durability for an expensive product.