We Now Have a Report of an Assault by Google Glass Haters

By: Josh Wolford - February 25, 2014

UPDATE: An earlier version of this article sported the title “We Now Have a Report of a Google Glass Hate Crime.” Of course I wasn’t seriously giving it the gravity of a true hate crime. It was a bit tongue-in-cheek. I was just emphasizing the fact that the Google Glass explorers community considers themselves as such–a community, or a group. It’s just a comment on the fact that the offenders pretty much said “you people are ruining our city.” If it came off as insensitive, that was not my intention.

A San Francisco woman claims that she was assaulted and robbed inside an area bar by some Google Glass haters. Sarah Slocum says she was “verbally and physically asaulted and robbed last night in the city” by a couple of individuals who were none-too-happy with her wearable tech.

“I have video of one of the girls saying that ‘we are destroying the city’ and video of the guy ripping them off my face,” she says on a Facebook post.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the alleged assault took place in the city’s Haight-Ashbury neighborhood. Although Slocum says that she filed a police report, the Chronicle quotes officials who say they are unaware of any incident.

“The only thing that I got back that night was the glass. I filed a police report yesterday but the police have not found the people or guy that did it or my stuff. I don’t plan on getting anything back. It happened at this bar called Molotov between Ashbury and Valencia and was started by these two girls who acted like they owned the place and must go there regularly because lots of their friends or the locals there started *haighting* too and backing them up,” says Slocum.

“These…people were just bitter, ugly, nasty, angry, jealous, confused and threatened people and this was apparently their hive.”

Google recently put out a nice little guide to not being a Glasshole–you know, a Google Glass-wearing asshole.

“Respect others and if they have questions about Glass don’t get snappy. Be polite and explain what Glass does and remember, a quick demo can go a long way. In places where cell phone cameras aren’t allowed, the same rules will apply to Glass. If you’re asked to turn your phone off, turn Glass off as well. Breaking the rules or being rude will not get businesses excited about Glass and will ruin it for other Explorers,” explains Google.

Maybe they need to come out with some suggestions for how to deal with Google Glass from the other side–”don’t rip them off someone’s face” or something like that. You know, keep it simple.

“I hope this doesn’t deter anyone from getting Google Glass. Usually the experience is 180 degrees different, and right before this happened I was showing one of the normal, excited and curious individuals there how it works, letting them try it on and demonstrating it for them. This is the experience 95% of the time,” she says.

Right now, this is just a report. But there’s really no reason to believe that Slocum would just make all of this up and open herself up to scrutiny and possible criticism (it’s the internet after all). Sure, we’ve seen some Google Glass explorers go to some extreme lengths to ride the publicity wave before, but it looks like Slocum just wants to get this story out there.

She recently filmed an interview with a local news station that will air tonight.

I’m sure any video Slocum can pull off her Glass will help. Imagine that–if Google Glass wound up capturing damning video of a crime–a crime spurred on by a hatred for Google Glass.

Image via lawrencegs, Flickr

Josh Wolford

About the Author

Josh WolfordJosh Wolford is a writer for WebProNews. He likes beer, Japanese food, and movies that make him feel weird afterward. Mostly beer. Follow him on Twitter: @joshgwolf Instagram: @joshgwolf Google+: Joshua Wolford StumbleUpon: joshgwolf

View all posts by Josh Wolford
  • http://stevenjdavies.co/ Steven J Davies

    I hope it isn’t just publicity stirring, that would be bad for everybody involvedor wanting to be involved with Glass. That said, if genuine then she did the right thing in ‘getting it out there’.

  • anon1234

    Please check on the definition of hate crime prior to reporting on a story.

  • Lee Stokes

    “Hate crime”? Dramatic much?
    More like drunks at a bar being drunk at a bar.

  • Master Booboo

    “Hate crime,” LOL get a clue faux-journalist poser.

  • joshgwolf

    Hello everyone. See update above.

    • JonathanNathan

      Dude, saying you didn’t intend to offend anyone is really one of the smarmiest, most disingenuous moves possible. Obviously you didn’t intend to offend anyone; you’re not a cartoon villain. I doubt anyone is accusing you of waking up this morning trying to find ways to offend people. The problem is that you offended people DESPITE your intentions. It demonstrates a lack of sensitivity and awareness. But then you’re a techie. One shouldn’t expect anything different.

      • joshgwolf

        It’s not disingenuous– it’s simply the truth. I only used the phrase to poke fun at Google Glass users. As many have told me, I should have remembered Poe’s Law.

        • Meili Belmont

          It’s totally disingenuous. It’s exactly what everyone who ever says racists things to me says. Their defense is always “oh I didn’t mean to offend anyone” when I call them out. Guess what, if you really, seriously can’t tell how to not say offensive things, you are at the very least insensitive but most likely you are a douchebag.

  • JonathanNathan

    “Who’s the Glasshole now?” Still you guys.

  • Lawly

    Other people’s accounts sound way more believable than hers. I have difficulty believing somebody would steal her glasses, yell “Death to the bourgeois!”, return them, then go on to steal her purse, phone and wallet.

    : http://www.missionmission.org/2014/02/25/tech-writer-may-or-may-not-have-been-attacked-at-molotovs-for-wearing-google-glass-but-please-stop-calling-this-a-hate-crime/#comment-98413

  • Sarah M

    As someone who was physically assaulted a year and a half ago, I really felt bad for her. Until I read her description of the physical assault: a pair of nerdy glasses were removed from her face and a dishtowel was thrown at her.

    All of which sucks, but um, yikes. Can we PLEASE hold people accountable for hyperbole? Physical assault is a massively serious crime. Drunken dishrag throwing is not. The only reason this is a story is because she was wearing some goofy new geek device that pisses a lot of people off. Otherwise it would be like dozens of other 2 a.m. scuffles that happen every night from the Marina to the Mission and beyond.

    (Yes, she was robbed. But my guess is that had nothing to do with Google, and everything to do with the fact that she left her purse on the bar as she ran out the door.)

  • Beau Giles

    Google Glass wearers have a reputation for being socially awkward and not understanding that people in a dark bar near closing time might not want to be video recorded only reinforces that reputation.

    That a prominent Glass wearer calls this a ‘hate crime’ makes you look not particularly intelligent Mr. Wolford.

  • Wag Jaw

    “These…people were just bitter, ugly, nasty, angry, jealous, confused and threatened people and this was apparently their hive” – hard to imagine how people might have gotten to dislike someone with this attitude ?!

    Glass is incidental here, just one obnoxious person (based on the above quote, and assuming it is accurate) wearing Glass who happened to rub the locals up the wrong way. As for running out leaving your valuables unguarded – just proves that being technically advanced doesn’t make you street -smart!

  • NunyaDangBisness

    Where’s that police report Sarah? Still mysteriously missing I note…AHEM.