Tamsin Constable

Bill Oddie suffers from IBR (Instruction Booklet Rage)

I was feeling fine, all relaxed and curled up on the sofa, enjoying a coffee by the fire. I picked up the Sunday papers and came across an interview with broadcaster and ornithologist Bill Oddie, and his relationship with technology. Here’s a snippet:

Question: What always frustrates you about technology in general?

Oddie: Instruction booklets. I cannot believe how abstruse and unintelligible they are. They drive me up the wall.

So I reached for the nearest instruction booklet I could find (for the tv). I was in no doubt that I wouldn’t have to look far to find an example that would surely rattle Bill Oddie’s perch (ho ho).

Here goes:

Instruction booklet: When this button is pressed the stop symbol is displayed at the top left-hand corner of the screen and the automatic page change is inhibited.

My alternative: Press the hold button to freeze a page.

Oddie’s ‘They drive me up the wall’ comment is really, really important. Dear manufacturer, is that the reaction you want from your valued customer? If not, then stop it!

And … relax.

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