Monday, February 20, 2012

Acupuncturist Takes Pinterest Too Far

(Pittsburgh, Pinsylvania) February 20, 2012.  A 47 year-old Pinsylvania man has been arrested for aggravated assault after pinning 134 photographs to the body of an unsuspecting, but very patient, patient of the Always Accurate Acupuncture Center.  The suspect, Ivan Toopoke, is a licensed acupuncturist known for pointedly practicing his profession with piercing perfection prior to this point.  This is the first time he has been stuck with charges of needling a customer the wrong way.  

The patient, who's name has been withheld thanks to the privacy settings on her Facebook account, is a regular customer of the AAAC.  She dozed off during what was to be a routine session of stress relief sticking, only to awaken on pins and needles.  According to one witness, an apprentice acupuncturist, "I walked into the exam room with a cushion full of freshly sterililized needles, and there she was, covered head to toe with pictures of kitchen appliances, shoes, pasta dishes and Ikea Furniture, pinned to her as if she was a human pin-board.  It was shocking."

The witness's reference to human pin-board was on point, as it turns out.  Investigators who confiscated Mr. Toopoke's office computer found evidence of an obsession with the popular on-line pin-board, Pinterest.  Toopoke had set up more than 750 "boards" and had personally pinned or repinned more than 150,000 images since signing up for the sticky social network six days ago.  According to Detective Dick Richardson, "it appears that Mr. Toopoke was addicted to this Pinterest thing to the point where he could no longer distinguish between digital pins and real pins.  In his mind, his brutally abusive acupuncturing of this patient was merely a means of sharing the things he loves."

When asked about the source of the 134 images pinned to the victim, Detective Richardson noted that CSI's involved in the case had photographed for evidence a large refrigerator in the Acupuncture Office that was suspiciously devoid of any cut out pictures on it, despite the presence of a large number of small magnets.  The acupuncturist Toopoke may face jail time as well as revocation of both his acupuncturist license and his Pinterest account.  He has been sent to the prominent Social Networking Rehab facility, INVITATIONS, for observation.  The victim is expected to fully recover, and has asked if she could keep several of the photos of shoes and furniture for future reference.

A spokesperson for Pinterest was not available for comment on the incident.

Photo Credit: © Eric IsselĂ©e -

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Sunday, July 3, 2011

Social Media Addiction Update: Google + and MySpace Minus

Most businesses rely on supply and demand, and the Social Networking Rehab business is no different. Fortunately, with the continued growth of Twitter, Facebook and other social networks, there has been no shortage of needy patients to fill the beds at INVITATIONS, the nation's premiere social networking recovery facility. For the past four years we have helped countless geeks and early adopters beat their need to tweet and revoke their desire to poke. Our highly trained staff has mastered the 140 steps needed for rehabilitation from the scourge of Social Networking addiction. However, we are presently faced with a new challenge putting stress on the status update... There's a new drug in town, and it's being spread by an all-powerful dealer who already has its runners and gang members on the digital corners of everyone's neighborhood. The new addiction is to something bigger than even the behemoth Google. The new addiction is Google +.

Pluses and Minuses

Google + is already running circles around the other addictive social networks. Formerly reformed Social Networking addicts such as Robert Scoble and Chris Brogan have already been spotted spending hours huddling and hanging out in the digital alleyways of Google +. The seductive allure of G+ invitations via Gmail have lured countless others to throw caution to the wind and take a toke of the "G", just to "see what it's like..." Some are inhaling more than others. Some have already succumbed wholeheartedly to the perils of Google + and have been found wandering aimlessly through the Interwebs, leaving a sloppy trail of +1's in their self-destructive path. Interventions are already leading to applications for a stint of Social Networking Rehab. Beds at INVITATIONS are in high demand.

Making Space

Fortunately, we have good news for early adopters needing a little less "+." Due to a steady decline in patients suffering from MySpace addiction, the staff at INVITATIONS has decided to permanently close the MySpace wing and re-open it with a new program fully dedicated to serving patients whose over-dependence on Google + has become a minus in other aspects of their professional and personal lives. The opening of the Google + treatment program at INVITATIONS is already making waves in rehab circles and causing quite a buzz. If you, or someone you care about, is in denial about a Google + dependency, help is now just an INVITATION away.

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Saturday, June 11, 2011

May We Have The Twitter Addiction Envelope Please: And the Weiner Is...

As evidenced by the oft re-tweeted member of New York's own member of Congress, @RepWeiner, there is no question that Twitter Addiction is on the rise (as was said member).  Try as we might, we can no longer remain flaccid whilst the Twitterverse stands aroused by this latest battle of the (Congressman's) bulge.  As Congressman's Weiner proves beyond a shadow of a doubt, Twitter Addiction is hard.

An Award From The Ward

With all the media atwitter with the sordid deets of Representative Weiner's Tweets, the size and scope of the matter was not lost on the staff at INVITATIONS.  When the highly trained doctors and therapists here gathered in the West Wing of the Scoble Ward to discuss nominations for the guest of honor keynote at this year's annual Intervention Convention, there was only one unanimous choice: Anthony Weiner.  Who better to be invited to speak to a crowd of loyal followers only to find themselves the object of a massive intervention? If that won't spank the monkey on the Congressman's back, nothing will.

Case Clothed

While we hope that Congressman Weiner will take our INVITATIONS intervention invitation to heart, understanding that he may still be in the denial stages of his disease, the staff at INVITATIONS has compiled a few steps from the "140 Steps To Cure Twitter Addiction" that may be helpful to the Congressman as he softly embarks on a road to recovery:

  • Step 1 - Do NOT touch a computer or mobile phone unless fully clothed.
  • Step 2 - Do NOT Tweet with one hand.... ever!
  • Step 3 - Do NOT send out a Tweet that you would not happily recite to your wife and/or Nancy Pelosi.

These are just a few small steps that may help prevent any Twitter boners in the future...

What additional steps would you recommend for the Congressman?

(Editor's Note: Trying to fight my addiction, as an INVITATIONS outpatient I have resisted the urge to post here since the end of last year, but alas, it is too out of character for me to resist the appeal of 140 characters.  More importantly, on behalf of the staff here at INVITATIONS I am compelled to think of the greater good and once again promote our services as the nation's first, and leading Social Networking Addiction Recovery facility.  In other words, "I'm Baaaack!")  

Photo Credit: Kerioak -

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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Top 10 Reasons I Am STILL Addicted To Twitter (and Social Networking)

Hello, my name is Jeff and lo and behold, I am still an addict...

It has been a while since I've written here.  Mostly because I thought I was cured. I thought I had kicked the habit.  I thought I was safely on the wagon.  I thought my character had advanced beyond the need for 140 characters.  I thought my status had been elevated above the need to constantly update my status.  I thought I could wait for the DVD to see THE SOCIAL NETWORK.  I thought I was strong enough to resist temptation, to turn down the inviting lure of the Twittersphere... to face-off against Facebook... but alas, I was wrong.

As the decade of social networking decadence winds down, I find myself back in need of a visit to Social Networking Rehab.  To prepare myself for a fresh start in 2011, I am in need of another visit to INVITATIONS, the nation's premiere Social Networking Recovery Facility...  I came to understand my need for an intervention as I reflected upon the year past and discovered, much to my own chagrin...


10. When booking a hotel room recently, I asked if the HOOTSUITE was available.

9.  Every-time I hear that there has been an earthquake somewhere in the world I wonder how strong it was on the SEESMIC scale (and I am in awe that @Loic has time to study Geology and run LeWeb...)

8.  When filling out a loan application and they asked for "NET WORTH" I entered my KLOUT score.

7.  I have 50 Apps on my Android phone, and 25 of them are TWITTER CLIENTS.

6. When I order potatoes at a restaurant I insist that they must be MASHABLE.

5. I have come to believe that my middle initial is "@" (Jeff @Sass)

4. I have seen the FAIL WHALE more times than there are pages in MOBY DICK.

3. When I want to know where my kids are and what they are doing, I go to their FACEBOOK pages first.

2.  I look for a "LIKE" button on items on the shelves at brick and mortar stores.

And the #1 Reason I am still addicted to Twitter and Social Networking...

1. I can't stop refreshing TWITTER to see how many times this post has been re-tweeted!

How about you?  Are you STILL addicted to Twitter and Social Networking???

Photo Credit: © Vladir09 -, © fizzgig -

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Monday, May 31, 2010

A Twitter Addict Takes The First Step...

I'm Jeff an I'm an addict. My drug of choice? Real-time data and the devices I use to suck in constant digital streams of data like so many virtual intravenous drips in the digital tubes that feed my my need.  Since I am an addict I behave like one, and thus I have let you down, you, my cohorts in Crime, my fellow social networking junkies... past, present and future patients of INVITATIONS.

How have I let you down?  First off, I have been neglecting this blog, selfishly feeding my own addictions, checking out of here while checking in to Foursquare and Gowalla.  Tweeting and re-tweeting instead of sharing with you here.  In December I invited you to contribute to a collection of 140 steps to cure your Social Media addiction, and many of you indeed did step up and share your tips for tackling Twitter.  Here are a few of your suggestions:

@mhillaert: I do have an addiction... and when I need to take a break, I have my friend hide my phone somewhere I will not be able to find it. That's the only way I can say good-bye for any significant period of time :)

@metzgerbusiness: Get a wife who calls you a dork and annoying for posting too often. Then do as I do - smile at her and post a comment about your wife thinking you're annoying for posting too many comments.

@stevegarfield: Travel somewhere with limited connectivity so you can realize that you don't need to be connected all the time. In Ireland you can go to a pub, enjoy a nice cold Guinness, and not check in on foursquare. You don't have to take a photo of the beer, and upload the photo to flickr, twitter and Yelp! You'll live without social media.

@alohalavina: No pockets to carry a phone when at the beach and no ringing allowed at the golf course. I have a great tan as a result.

These are all great ways to combat Social Media and Twitter addiction one Tweet at a time, but they are a long way from 140 Steps...

Please continue to add your steps to this post and as soon as I reach 140 Steps I will publish the ebook!  (Promise!) The fate of the Twitterverse is in your hands!  Together we can make a difference (or at least Tweet about it!)

Photo Credit: © fizzgig -

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Thursday, December 31, 2009

140 Small Steps For Man (And A Giant Leap For Social Networking Rehab)

As announced here, early in 2010 we will be publishing an eBook of "140 Steps To Cure Your Twitter (and Social Networking) Addiction" and we are looking for YOU to help us compile the 140 best steps toward recovery.  So please, look in the mirror, admit you have a problem, and then SHARE your suggested road to rehabilitation in the comments below, or in the comments at this post.

The staff at INVITATIONS started collecting steps for the book at a recent Miami Tweetup and we present a few of your suggestions in this Public Service Announcement:

Thanks to Jeff Pulver, Chris Heuer, Kristie Wells, Yvette Ferry, Alex DeCarvalho, Maria De Los Angeles, and everyone else who was willing to raise their hand and face their addiction head on...

To be continued...

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Saturday, December 5, 2009

140 Steps To Cure Your Social Networking Addiction

12 steps are clearly not enough to address the ravages of Social Networking Addiction. With mobile phones placing Twitter and Facebook in our pockets, and everyone we ever associated with from grade school to grad school now friending and tweeting us 24/7 with all things arcane, mundane and inane, it is virtually impossible to escape the allure of the drug we call "Social Networking." 12 Steps - the traditional guiding principles outlining a course of action for recovery - may work for substance abuse, but they can't hold a ceremonial candle to the substantial abuse that is Social Networking addiction.


For several years now the staff at INVITATIONS, the Nation's Premiere Social Networking Recovery facility, have recognized that the original 12 steps were challenged when it comes to Social Media. For example, Step 8, "Make a list of all the persons we harmed with our addiction..." was great until Twitter added the new LISTS feature. Once our patients started using Twitter Lists to create lists of the folks their addiction affected "Step 8" lost some of its healing luster. As if that wasn't enough of a challenge, patients who thought @Scobleizer was their higher power were devastated when he went and unfollowed everyone, cutting the cult of Scoble off at the knees. We may be able to admit we are powerless over Social Networking and that our lives have become unmanageable, but we need more than 12 steps to lead us to the light. We need 140 steps to cure Social Networking Addiction, and we need your help to develop them.


Who better to develop a 140 step program than the folks who will benefit the most from it. Who better to define the cure than those suffering from the disease. Who better to help me come up with 140 clever and witty steps to a clean, social networking free existence than those whose very existence is dominated by social media. That's right, YOU!

If you are in need of Social Networking Rehab, you can join in and help us create the definitive 140 Step Program. Please add your suggested step in the comments. Between now and the end of the year we will be collecting, reviewing and testing your steps on the patients at INVITATIONS. Then, in January 2010, we will ring in the New Year by publishing an eBook detailing "140 Steps To Cure Your Social Networking Addiction" with the best of your submissions.

What steps are you taking to cure your Social Networking habit??? Please share them in the comments and you will have the chance to be included in the eBook next year! If you have friends who are addicted (and you know you do) please share this and ask them to contribute their "Steps" too!

UPDATE: We have released a new PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT video, with some steps recommended by some of you at a recent Miami TweetUp.

Photo Credit: © chinti -

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