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‘Sent From My iPhone’ Disclaimers Work

iphone

Those annoying “Sent from my iPhone” signature block disclaimers actually work.

Atlantic Wire (“Why We Forgive Misspelled Emails if They’re ‘Sent From My iPhone’“):

Soon after Apple’s iPhone went on sale six years ago this week, you probably started spotting hastily-written emails appended by the words “Sent from my iPhone.” And then, a bit later, you spotted a lot more. Of course, the iPhone was not the first email-enabled smartphone to attach such a message to outgoing emails. So did various Treo handsets (remember those?) and BlackBerry phones, pre- and post-iPhone. The iPhone’s instant success, and its default signature, simply made the practice far more prevalent. Alongside this trend, a different but related one emerged: the iPhone’s stock signature, at first deemed a louche emblem of status, became a built-in forgiveness clause. Please don’t judge me for any typos or spelling errors, “Sent from my iPhone” suggested. I am very busy. That’s according to a chartpublished on Tuesday by the author Clive Thompson, who drew data from a 2012 Stanford study on the perceived credibility of misspelled emails sent with (and without) a “Sent from my iPhone” signature:

iphone-forgiveness

[…]

For these results, Thompson credits “linguistic code-switching” — whereby people speak differently among friends, family, and coworkers — and theorizes that the prevalence of AutoCorrect software has, paradoxically, made misplaced words and punctuation more acceptable in digital communication.

At least when it comes to text messages, I now presume misspellings are the phone’s fault.

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About James Joyner
James Joyner is the publisher of Outside the Beltway, an associate professor of security studies at the Marine Corps Command and Staff College, and a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. He earned a PhD in political science from The University of Alabama. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter.

Comments

  1. David in KC says:

    If only it would automatically add that to blog posts…

  2. al-Ameda says:

    For one day I changed my cell phone message to “sent from my remote control device” and actually I had a couple of friends ask me how I modified my remote control device to send an email.

  3. Just Me says:

    I find mistakes all the time when using my iPhone (and do most of my Internet posting from it).

    Usually it is autocorrect but sometimes it is a failure to strike the right key and proof read until I hit post.

    With message boards, blogs and social media I almost always assume typo or autocorrect rather than intention or ignorance.

  4. David in KC says:

    @Just Me: I think you have a 50/50 chance to be right on that in regard to my posts..

  5. PJ says:

    At least when it comes to text messages, I now presume misspellings are the phoneโ€™s fault.

    โ€˜Send From My iPhoneโ€™ Disclaimers Work

    Did you write the post on your phone? ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Fixed. – JJ

  6. rudderpedals says:

    Does anyone remember the Palm TX Graphitti interface where you used a stylus to gesture alphanumeric characters on lower sections of the resistive screen? The method is cool because it’s a shallow learning curve to to get 2-3 good chars per second out of it. I miss that interface. Except for the stylus. And the funky short life resistive cover on the screen. RIP Palm

  7. PJ says:

    Oh, crap. Now you’ve gone an WaPo edited the original post so that my previous comment no longer makes any sense.

    It’s obviously time for a blogging oversight panel or something!

    ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Sorry–I usually append notices of these things to the original comment. – JJ

  8. Trumwill Mobile says:

    @David in KC: It’s the reason that I am sometimes Trumwill Mobile instead of just Trumwill. Same concept.

    Of course, this would be less of an issue if they’d have just kept producing phones with real keyboards. Back then, my email signature just asked to forgive my brevity rather than typos which happen now. So, basically, it’s Steve Jobs’s fault.

  9. Ron Beasley says:

    @rudderpedals:

    Does anyone remember the Palm TX Graphitti interface where you used a stylus to gesture alphanumeric characters on lower sections of the resistive screen?

    Yes, that was indeed a nightmare!!!

  10. PJ says:

    Sorryโ€“I usually append notices of these things to the original comment. โ€“ JJ

    I’m just joking ๐Ÿ™‚ Just found the original error funny considering the topic. ๐Ÿ™‚ And then I got to make a joke about Wapo editing without notifying and the request from journalists for ethical rules for bloggers…. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Nothing serious, that’s why I added ๐Ÿ˜‰ to each comment. ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Kit Smith says:

    I’ve changed my default signature on my phone and tablet to “Sent from a mobile device, please excuse any spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors.” It’s a lot more straightforward and doesn’t give off the pretentiousness of “Look at me, I’m using my fancy new gadget!”