How a Technology Mishap Led to a Killing
Technology, that’s meant to empower us, is also capable of unhinging us. While reading my local news I recently came across a story published by Bolton News (a newspaper relatively local to me) where, it appears, two friends ended up in a murderous knife fight with each other over a misspelled text message.
I know it sounds strange and you can read the full tale in the link supplied, basically, however, the tale is that two recent friends who knew each other over a six month period exchanged what appear to have been a number of text messages, one of which was autocorrected by the predictive text technology present in every mobile phone to read ‘mutter’ instead of the originally intended ‘nutter’.
The one who received the auto-corrected message, took offence, sent back an angry text which resulted in a flurry of text exchanges and the scenario escalated into a one visiting the other and starting a bloody and fatal knife fight.
There is a lot more to this however which, in order to help make sense of it I need to explain. While the British slang ‘nutter’ meaning someone who is a little off their head is one of those funny words which can be used with ambivalence and implies either a playful term of affection for a friend or something you should take issue with, the term ‘mutter’ which seems to have sparked off the incident needed a little deeper digging into.
Like most of you I was familiar with the conventional meaning of the word ‘mutter’ meaning to mumble but that hardly seemed to be a reason for someone to fly into a rage so I went digging a little deeper. It is, apparently, street slang for “totally unpleasant criminals”. This explains the escalating rage over the misunderstanding which led to the fatal stabbing.Continued on the next page