Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Google-dy gook again

A year ago, I wrote about how dreadfully pathetic Google Voice is. That is the app that listens to your voicemail and then emails you a supposed transcript. To test the system, I had left a series of urgent-sounding voice mails for my editor, Tom the Butcher, and they all came in too garbled to understand. For example, when I left this message:

"I have cut the brake cable in your Prius because I want to have your wife all to myself. It was wrong, and I regret it. Don't get in that car."

It became:

"Cut the briefcase came on your previous, so I wanna ask you wife all to myself with long and I regret hello just crazy. We was that call."

In the intervening year, much has improved in the world. The stock market has continued its recovery. The odious Defense of Marriage Act is dead. Congress raised the debt ceiling, like adults. So I thought I'd check back with Google Voice to see if my shaming had prompted it to improve its system.


Message to Tom:

"My head's in the oven. I can't live with what a mean-spirited personally obnoxious hack I am, an intellectual fraud with a withered soul and ridiculous hair. If only someone were around to call and reassure me."

Message as delivered by Google Voice:

"Hey it's me and I can't live with what I mean spirited. Personally, I'm not sure if you're planning to collect full Forbes with. It's so ridiculous here. If only somewhere around and we usually on office awful thing hi."

Message to Tom:

"Hey, Tom, in the story I just handed in I accidentally wrote that Alan Dershowitz was arrested for money laundering, cannibalism and crimes against humanity. Actually his clients were. Make sure to correct that so old Dersh doesn't own the Washington Post."

Message as delivered by Google Voice:

"Hey Tom, As we are interested in it so that we were open. Alan for. What's with the rest of the for money wondering, cannibalism in crimes against humanity. Actually clients. 4. Make sure the correct that folder working on the washable."

Message to Tom:

"Barack Obama and Edward Snowden have agreed to an exclusive simultaneous interview with me, but you need to call the White House right away to confirm I work for the Post."

Message as delivered by Google Voice:

"Hello. K. Bravo on it, which sucks don't have a great one. Exclusive simultaneous interview with me. Give me a call whenever right away to confirm that I work for the boat."

Message to Tom:

"Lisa, my darling, tonight's the night we escape and I take you to heights of ecstasy Tom can't even imagine. ... Uh-oh. Uh. Is this Lisa's phone? Crap. ..."

Message as delivered by Google Voice:

"Hey Lisa, McCarlen tonight. Please keep an eye teacher paid for that, cos he talked. Take care the next few. Yo all this is we should phone. Hi!"

(Actually, I guess there are those rare times when Google Voice's incompetence works to your advantage.)

© 2014 Washington Post Writers Group

Google-dy gook again 03/13/14 [Last modified: Friday, March 14, 2014 1:28pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Washington Post - Writers Group.

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Shakeup on Adam Putnam campaign


    In a sign of unsteadiness for what  had  looked like a strong-out-of-the-gate Adam Putnam campaign, the Republican frontrunner suddenly fired his campaign manager and political director. Hard-charging Campaign manager Kristin Davis and political director Jared Small were two of the three outsiders to join …

    Putnam campaigning in Destin the other day as part of his 22-city bus tour
  2. Rays let early lead get away again in loss to Angels (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — As pleased as the Rays were to win consecutive series against the contending Red Sox, Indians and Yankees and to get briefly back over .500, there was a lot of talk in the clubhouse before Monday's game against the Angels that it was time to do better.

    Tampa Bay Rays third base coach Charlie Montoyo (25) high fives designated hitter Corey Dickerson (10) as he rounds third on his lead off home run in the first inning of the game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Los Angeles Angels at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Monday, May 22, 2017.
  3. Tampa man arrested for killing man in his USF-area home


    TAMPA — A Tampa man was arrested Monday in the death of man found killed at a home in the University of South Florida area last week, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.

    Kadeem Dareem Archibald, 26, was arrested Monday on a  second degree murder charge in the University Area killing of Khando Kerr. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
  4. Report: Trump asked intel chiefs to push back against FBI collusion probe after Comey revealed its existence


    President Donald Trump asked two of the nation's top intelligence officials in March to help him push back against an FBI investigation into possible coordination between his campaign and the Russian government, the Washington Post reports, citing current and former officials.

    From  left, CIA Director Mike Pompeo; Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats; and National Security Agency Director Adm. Michael Rogers take their seats on Capitol Hill on May 11 before  testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on major threats facing the U.S. [Associated Press]
  5. For Gov. Rick Scott, 'fighting' could mean vetoing entire state budget

    State Roundup

    Every day, Gov. Rick Scott is getting a lot of advice.

    The last time a Florida governor vetoed the education portion of the state budget was in 1983. Gov. Bob Graham blasted fellow Democrats for their “willing acceptance of mediocrity.”