Pessimists Archive Round-Up

Pagers, Puzzles and Pac-Man + New Article Readings

🧩 Puzzling Problem (1924)

In 1924, the University of Michigan placed a ban on cross-world puzzles in classrooms. Today professors make similar complaints about laptops and smartphones, perhaps they should try making their lectures more entertaining?

🐉 FUD&D (1985)

The board game Dungeons & Dragons, originally released in 1974, created controversy due to the violent and sex-based content. According to psychiatrist Dr. Thomas Radecki the game was “essentially a worship of violence”, before video games, it was board games!

📟 Pager Danger (1989)

In the 80s Illinois Governor James R. Thompson wanted to pass a bill to forbid the use of pagers in public schools. The reason? Some felt these “electronic signaling devices” were used as a way for students to help buy and sell narcotics. However, one school spokesman admitted “I can’t say any student has ever been caught in the act.”

🕹 Crack-Man (1983)

Only a few years after Pac-Man came to the US it was being claimed kids and teens were addicted, with it being compared to gambling. We found a women suggesting laws to set age limits to play Pac-Man, as if it were alcohol. Similar laws have been suggested by lawmakers recently in regards to social media.

⭐️ Tweet of the Week

This 2006 Cosmo cover featuring Keira Knightley asked an edgy question, “Are You Addicted to MySpace?”, we’re all cold turkey now.

🎙 Pessimists Aloud Podcast

Episode 2 of our new weekly podcast ‘Pessimists Aloud’ contains two article readings from the first decade of the 1900s: The first concerns faces and manned flight, the other a warning about the habit of reading in bed.