Describing a world in which every object—refrigerators, thermostats, toilet seats, and more—is connected to the Internet, the concept’s proponents promise that it will make our lives easier. In reality, it creates a pervasive cyber security nightmare: If your refrigerator can go online, your refrigerator can be hacked. Not only is the term itself silly, it also promises a world that hardly seems desirable.
Fortunately, @InternetofShit is here to save us. Launched in July, Internet of Shit is a Twitter account that exists to mock the silliest, most unnecessary new connected commodities, imagined and real. At once deeply funny and a little on the nose, it will make you laugh, even as it fills you with despair.
Many—maybe all—of the products it features are dopey enough that they already seem like jokes. Indeed, in aggregate they present something like a variant on Poe’s Law, which holds that a sufficiently extreme position is indistinguishable from a parody of that position. It’s hard to imagine, for example, why anyone would need a “smart belt,” but apparently it’s a real thing. Likewise, a Wi-Fi–ready hot water kettle seems silly, but apparently someone thought it was necessary enough to market it.
Whether the things it’s mocking are real or imagined, Internet of Shit perfectly captures the strangeness of our present moment, and it does so in 140 characters or less. Here are a few of our favorite tweets.
And for those who really want to worry about the future, Internet of Shit captures the Philip K. Dick–esque nightmare that these products promise: