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BLOG: Rush Limbaugh, Siri, and the wrath of the technocrati

John Cox | April 20, 2012
On his Tuesday radio broadcast, conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh described a technical problem with his iPhone and Apple's Siri voice assistant, encountered on his drive to work that morning.

One user, mtalsma, started a thread at MacRumors about Limbaugh's experience, with a link to an account of it at TheBlaze. Somewhat naively, he said he was "not trying to start a thread on politics or the semantics of talk radio personalities."

"To me, it's pretty crazy," mtalsma posted. "I think someone somehow hacked into Apple's servers and decided to mess with him. Limbaugh stated he had no way to prove this happened (should've taken screenshots), however I don't think there'd be any reason to make it up."

"That's seriously the dumbest thing I've ever heard," posted ppleguy123, without clarifying whether he was referring to mtalsma's post or Limbaugh's account.

Any number of commenters simply branded Limbaugh a liar. A typical post was this one by entatlrg: "Rush loudmouth is a proven liar many times over, and a bumbling idiot, how could anyone believe he's telling the truth this time. And for all the millions it could happen to, it happens to him? Lol, No."

One poster, scaredpoet, condemned Limbaugh for not accepting the conflicting suggestions and analyses offered by "IT guys." "Right, so Rush Limbaugh, the guy who doesn't really have his head on straight politically, thinks he knows better about IT than the IT guys... and even though all this of this allegedly happened only in his car with his funky hotspot-bluetooth-jenga-puzzle of a weird setup, and NOT anywhere else, that clearly means to him that those hippies at Apple are to blame. Real smart," he sneered. "I call BS on the whole thing."

At TheBlaze, in the comments section, HuckleberryFriend announced "With all this talk about hacking, why doesn't anyone mention the obvious? Bad acoustics and/or background noise in the car. Hacking is hard and unlikely. Microphone problems are extremely common, especially in a car."

Unless one simply has faith that Limbaugh invented his Siri problem, it appears to have been nothing more than one of the countless technical and often unexplained techno-glitches that fill online forums and user sites.


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