Google Glass: Attack In San Francisco Proves That “Glassholes” Exist On Both Sides

Google Glass continues to make its waves. Or, in the case of some people, continues to tick people off. Such was the case with San Francisco social media consultant Sarah Slocum, who claims she was attacked this weekend for using Google Glass in a local bar.

The frazzled Slocum took to her Facebook profile to state that she was “verbally and physically assaulted” by patrons of a bar who heckled her for wearing Google Glass and allegedly snatched the device from her face. A video of part of this confrontation can be found here.

I don’t know about you guys, but that sounds pretty crazy to me. On top of all the talk of users of Google Glass being “Glassholes”, it sounds like this is a two-way street.

San Francisco Police Department Officer Albie Esparza confirmed reports of a woman getting into a scuffle over Google Glass after patrons believed she was recording them without permission, though he said that no suspects have been taken into custody.

Here’s the thing about the Google Glass technology. The further along we get in mobile tech, the more paranoid it’s bound to make people. The rules are changing, along with the entire way we play the “game” called life. It’s the technology era, though it would seem some are more resistant to this than others.

Acceptance of tech like Google Glass is going to be a rocky road, and the presentation of science fiction in books, movies and television only fans the flames of paranoia among the anti-tech crowd.

On top of that, the United States government did the technology revolution no favors with the NSA surveillance scandal, which is still fresh in the minds of many of the folks involved in the harsh backlash against products like Google’s head-computer.

The idea of real-time information, background checks, addresses, personal information and the like being readily available to anyone wearing this thing is fairly disturbing, especially to folks who have no idea just how much or little information is presented through the Glass.

Of course, users of the Glass need only think back to the rise of camera-phones and smart devices. When these products were first made available, there was backlash against them too. Change is scary, especially in a society that has become accustomed to equating change with negativity.

At its core, Google Glass does much of what a smartphone does, without the need for touching and tapping. Users are capable of reading e-mail, receiving notifications, contacting people, and even doing video calls via a small screen over their eyes rather than using their hands.

If nothing else, folks who find themselves caught up in the very ill-advised habit of using their cell phones while driving should find a product like Google Glass appealing.

Joseph White, a consultant and “Google Glass Explorer” based out of Rockville, said that he’s only encountered one truly negative reaction to his using of Google Glass since he began using it back in December, though it was not nearly as violent or confrontational as Slocum’s encounter.

“The closest experience that I have had to [Slocum’s] is someone coming up to me at an Organizing for America event. . . and asking me ‘What are you recording right now?’ ” he said.

“I have never been asked to take them off,” he said. “And I have been in restaurants, some bars — just out in public at different functions.”

Google Glass will continue to make waves and ruffle feathers for the foreseeable future, but if consumers take nothing else away from reports like these, they should know this: Invasive, confrontational or offensive actions involving Google Glass are definitely working both ways.