BuzzFeed's newest vertical, a tech news section called FWD, looks great (we like the headlines like "It's the Software Stupid" and "Puppies Playing with iPads") but we have to take issue with one of editor Matt Buchanan's first posts: "A Smartphone Isn't Smart Anymore. It's Just a Phone." We've got three specific points of disagreement:
1) Dumbphones are awesome and still very popular throughout the world. Dropping the smart from smartphones would confuse iPhones and the bricklike things with rubber buttons that we call dumbphones. Dumbphones are amazing, even though they're not as smart as smartphones. In the developing world, dumbphones are lifelines, much needed tools for connecting with the rest of the world. The Atlantic's Technology channel has written about this fact a fair bit. One post worth reading Jamie Holmes, a policy analyst at the New America Foundation, who called texting "the most important information service in the world." His argument in brief: "Simple messaging is the driving force behind technology-enabled changes in commerce, crime, political participation, and governing." Sounds smart. Should we should now simply call dumbphones, phones?