How Not to Ask an iPad User About the iPad

· Joanthan Poritsky

Perhaps I’m a curmudgeon - okay I definitely am - on the subject of technological social etiquette, but honestly, the nagging iPad questions have to stop. The thing has been out for three months now, and there are Apple Stores aplenty to go and diddle with the thing for the overly curious. Still, I get odd looks and uncomfortable questions from strangers all the time. In week one, it was cool; now, not so much.

Let’s be clear here: I’m not talking about a mutual friend, a coworker, a family member or a member of your social graph coming over to stroke your aluminum and glass baby. Those folks can play all they like. I’m talking about complete strangers who want you to sell them on the iPad just because they noticed you had one. On the subway, in a cafe, standing on the street; strangers have shown no mercy in their quest to learn more about this “magical” non-computer computer.

Enough. I’ve had it. Here is a guide to avoid making iPad users uncomfortable, surly and want to go home and write a blog post about how much you suck.

1. Don’t Ask if I Love My iPad

I do love my iPad, for a number of reasons, but they are probably different from yours. I don’t love your wife, but I’m sure you think she’s the tops.

2. Don’t Ask Me What I Use it For

That’s none of your beeswax.

3. Don’t Mention “I’ll Get the Next One”

If you’re jazzed about the iPad 2, which doesn’t exist, then don’t ask me about my iPad. You’re making two social blunders when you bring this up: 1) You’re wasting my time because you don’t actually give a crap about the iPad and 2) you’re passing a judgement on my early adoption.

4. Don’t Tell Me About Your Kindle

I had a Kindle and I returned it, but that’s not the point. I don’t care about your Kindle, and you don’t care about my iPad. Haven’t we covered this?

5. Don’t Say “Sorry to Interrupt You”

Just don’t interrupt me.