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Planned Obselescence

After seeing The Story of Stuff on a couple of my friends’ gmail status messages, I saw the 20-minute online movie and got motivated to take myself out of the loop of planned obselescence.

Then a week later I made the mistake of putting my iPod in my pocket next to a magnetic toy. The iPod hard drive was dead instantly. The toy was fine.

I thought about replacing the iPod with one of the newer ones. But I’ve had it for almost three years, and it’s never had a problem before that couldn’t be fixed by resetting it. So I decided instead of spending $300 on a new one I’d buy a replacement hard drive for $70 on eBay, and a screen protector.

I followed the excellent video instructions on and fixed the iPod in about 15 minutes. I didn’t have a non-marring pry tool handy so I used a small electronics screwdriver. It left a very small mark on the one side from prying. Then I applied the screen protector, basically a clear sticker, to the ipod screen. I bought it thinking that it would prevent further scratches to the iPod screen — that my screen wouldn’t get any worse than it was. But when I applied the screen protector, the screen instantly took on it’s original glossy look.

None of the scratches accumulated during 3 years of ownership were visible any longer. I have a suspicion that a lot of people throw away electronics simply because they look old. If more people knew about screen protectors, maybe they could save their money for other things, or spend less time working and more time having fun riding bikes.