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Is Google Glass Attack an Anti-Techie Hate Crime?
Scott Lucas | Photo: Courtesy KPIX5 | February 25, 2014
Or just a late night bar scuffle? Hard to tell.
Did we just hit another milestone in the inevitable escalation of the San Francisco class war? Or did we just learn that sometimes people get into scrapes at Lower Haight punk rock bars in the late weekend hours? This is one of those tests of perspective—what you see depends on where you sit.
It's hard to sort out fact from overwrought speculation in the story that emerged this morning of a woman claiming to have been attacked in Lower Haight bar Molotov's on Friday night for donning a pair of Google Glass.
Sarah Slocum, a tech writer and business consultant, posted this on Facebook over the weekend:
"OMG so you'll never believe this but... I got verbally and physically asaulted and robbed last night in the city, had things thrown at me because of some wanker Google Glass haters, then some *bleeeeeeeeeep* tore them off my face and ran out with them then and when I ran out after him his *bleeeeeeep* friends stole my purse, cellphone walet and everything."
Pretty straightforward, right? Well maybe not.
Was Slocum the latest victim of an anti-tech backlash that has seen outbreaks of rock throwing and harrassment? Or was she being, well, a bit of a Glasshole?
Reports from the scene differ. Slocum claims that she was simply showing off the new gadget to her friends when two women confronted her and a man ripped the pair of Glass off her face. Slocum pursued the assailant outside the bar, who eventually gave back the device—but not before her purse, cell phone, and wallet were stolen. Slocum has filed a police report and even turned over video taken with Glass of the attack.
According to KPIX5, a witness said that Slocum played a role in instigating the altercation. Brian Lester, a patron at the bar, said that just before the attack Slocum, who was showing off the pair to bar patrons, had been irritating some of them with the possibility that she was filming them without their consent.
This morning, Google had this to say in a statement: "We're aware of the incident and our thoughts are with Explorer. We've reached out to her to see if there's anything we can do to help."
We've reached out to Slocum and will update if we hear back from her.