There’s one very logical reason why Google opens almost all their projects and services as a limited beta before exposing them to the world. The more people testing things, the better. With something as personal as Glass, it would make sense for Google to want to beta test in as many unique situations as possible. That’s where the “if I had Glass” campaign comes in.
Google asked devout fans to take to social media and let them know what they’d do with Google Glass. There have been some genuinely interesting, noble and sentimental reasons posted for why people want Glass, but there have also been some real trouble-makers throwing their hats into the ring.
It seems that instead of actually going through the submissions received, Google just picked if I had Glass winners at random. And now they’re having to go back and tell certain people they actually aren’t allowed in the program. Disqualified applicants, who Google says didn’t follow the guidelines for the contest, include someone who wants to simply throw it at your face and someone who just wants to “cut a bitch.”
To add to the problem of picking applications at random, it seems that the purchasing guidelines surrounding the if I had Glass campaign haven’t been clear. There are droves of people who made it into the explorer program commenting that they either didn’t know they had to still purchase Glass, for $1,500, or people saying they simply don’t have the money.
In response, there have been people using Google+ to ask for money to purchase Glass, a handful of Indiegogo campaigns started to raise money, and people looking to take advantage of those who can’t afford Glass. One person is going as far as offering to fly an if I had Glass winner out and pay for their glasses.
At this point, it would seem that there may have been a better way for Google to go about this. Something like a short form that was reviewed by a human before acceptance would have made the process much smoother. Let’s hope the confusion and problems surrounding the if I had Glass campaign don’t affect Glass’ eventual release.