Friday, November 1, 2019

Butt-Dial

I never heard of this word until last week.
 
(Image Courtesy: Dreamstime.com)
 
Butt-Dial means accidentally dial someone’s phone number while sitting on your phone. It happens when you are sitting down while your cell phone is in your pant’s back pocket. It is also known as pocket dial. It usually dials any of the last 3 numbers you have dialed.
 
When this dialing happens, the receiver can hear all the conversations you are having with someone else in the room. If you are not talking to someone, the receiver will be wondering why you dialed him/her and did not speak.
 
Side Note: Last week, President Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Guiliani’s cell phone butt dialed an NBC News Reporter. At that time, Mr. Guiliani was speaking to someone else, someone in the same room. This reporter heard the whole conversation and published the entire conversation. I think this is unethical.

11 comments:

  1. Ethical or Unethical, it's Karma. Nowadays, Karmic incidents seem to be enabled by technology!

    Destination Infinity

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comments Rajesh. It is not Karma. It is unethical. Here is an imaginary scene. Suppose you are having a conversation with your wife and your phone butt-dials me. Is it OK if I listen to the entire conversation with your wife and/or publish it?

      Delete
    2. Publishing it is unethical. But the 'accidental dialing' is Karma ;)

      Destination Infinity

      Delete
  2. I agree with SG that it is unethical to let others know about a private conversation that one had heard by accident. The act of publishing such private conversation shows the intent was not fair  even if the content was harmless.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comments Mr. KP. I agree with you.

      Delete
  3. This is really funny to learn about.

    As you say, this might be unethical. However, I feel public life deserves no privacy. It's almost voluntary disclosure. Mr.Guiliani is lucky not much comes out of the voicemail.

    Also, the way constant surveillance is imposed upon us, it feels nice to see someone in power, or close to someone in power get a feel of it :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comments Karunesh. I understand what you are saying. But, public life deserves no privacy? Is it only for American public figures or anyone in the world? If someone published Virat Kohli's intimate conversation with Anushka Sharma, is it ok with you? They both are public figures. I disagree.

      Delete
    2. Haha....public life deserving no privacy is for everyone everywhere.

      Of course Virat and Anushka's private conversations are private. But if, and it's only an if, Virat is discussing match fixing on the phone, or there is some kind of shady team selection going on, we all would want the conversion to go public.

      Delete
  4. Having understood that the dial was a butt one,it is unethical to publish. The reporter might be thinking of topics to scop into. Here he got one, fallen into his wallet. He took the advantages.Nice info.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comments Sarala. You are correct. The reporter took advantage.

      Delete
  5. I missed the news of this incident, which happened last month-end, since I was out of station and travelling. Thanks for this post. I also didn't know about this colloquial expression.

    Yes, it's indeed not right to publish something which a reporter has obtained without the knowledge of the person who has given it. It could be something he heard or read accidentally.

    If at all the reporter wanted to share this extraordinary incident, he could have done that without revealing the identity of the person, that is, Giuliani.

    The only exception to his rule of thumb in journalism is when a reporter goes undercover and obtains information stealthily in cases where the issue is of larger public interest.

    Here in this case, there doesn't seem to be any big public interest involved. In fact, the reporter couldn't even make out what the context was.

    ReplyDelete