Geek Rituals: Unboxing

Unboxing is so common these days. When did we start caring so much about capturing the act of removing components from its shipping container?

Does this behavior seem normal? Have you ever documented a tech purchase by snapping photos and blogging about it? What do you think about unboxing photos? Sound off in the comments below.

-Krishna

These beautiful and intelligent people wrote

  • BenReply
    August 6, 2008 at 12:10 am

    This is, I’ll be honest, something that really creeps me out about Tech Geek culture.

  • Jason ReedReply
    August 6, 2008 at 1:37 am

    The only computer I had to unbox for myself I didn’t even have internet yet. I was in my barracks after returning from Bosnia in 1996 with a fat wad of money in my bank account. I went to the store found the computer I wanted and told the sales guy “I want that computer” he asked “how do you want to pay for it? Credit? Finance?”, I said “Cashier’s check!” It came with so many extras I had to borrow a cart to take it the 500 meters back to my barracks :D

  • Theala SildorianReply
    August 6, 2008 at 8:17 am

    For me, bragging consists of telling my PC enslaved friends how quickly I get up and running on the Internet after buying a Mac.

    If I could just impress MIS at work, that would be something . . . ;)

  • Mike McBrideReply
    August 6, 2008 at 8:30 am

    I’m with Ben on this one, I’ve never really understood the fascination with unboxing photos. To me you’re just delaying the point where you have it unboxed, setup and are actually using it to do something!

  • Joseph ScullyReply
    August 6, 2008 at 8:33 am

    LOL unboxing – brings back painful memories. Liking the new email format which now provides url link. Keep up the good work!

  • MarkReply
    August 6, 2008 at 8:45 am

    Nice comic! just one thing i would like to point out…

    hermeneutics according to Wikipedia means: “the development and study of theories of the interpretation and understanding of texts.”

    i think you meant hermetically sealed, which is an air tight seal.

    by the way i love to unbox new things, but not quite like that :)
    can’t wait for the next comic!

  • KrishnaReply
    August 6, 2008 at 8:49 am

    Thanks for the heads-up, Mark. I’ll fix it asap. :)

  • krishnaReply
    August 6, 2008 at 10:05 am

    Trivia question: Can anyone name the first person to document the ‘unboxing’ experience on the web?
    (I have no idea myself – but I’m curious to know when this phenomenon started)

  • MartinReply
    August 6, 2008 at 11:02 am

    When I unbox things, I’m usually in such a hurry to get everything up and running that I don’t have time for photos. I did take pictures of a friend’s unboxing, though.

    What are the funny-looking blobs next to the words “manner” and “internet” in panels two and four?

  • krishnaReply
    August 6, 2008 at 11:05 am

    hey, thanks for the catch, Martin – I was originally planning to put addendums to those panels, but forgot to remove them after I finished the ‘toon.

  • WilRReply
    August 6, 2008 at 11:52 am

    I totally documented my last unboxing, it was just new ram and graphic card though…

    good memories :P

  • madbardReply
    August 6, 2008 at 1:56 pm

    i can kind of understand it for stuff like the first iPod or first iPhone… i haven’t documented my own unboxings but i did post to my blog when i set up my iMac G4 because i was so pretty. the iLamp never did became an iconic image like the iMac G3 egg before being superceded by the iMac G5 form factor.

  • kShadhavarReply
    August 6, 2008 at 2:08 pm

    I kind of did this with my laptop purchase a couple months ago. But only took pictures after it was unpackaged so that my friends who were interested could see my linux laptop. If it had been a dell or some other such namebrand I probably would not have done even that. I did use twitter for updates, but not a step-by-step process. It was more like “Yay shiny new toy!”
    Photos are kind of funny, but interesting when they are of the unboxing of something I’m thinking about getting. Especially when one is thinking about getting something from a relatively unknown vendor. For example when I was considering purchasing a system76 laptop, I did look at a couple of blogs with unboxing photos and reviews.

  • krishnaReply
    August 6, 2008 at 3:23 pm

    I think the original intent surrounding documenting the unboxing experience was a good one, for the very points you make kShadhavar. However, it now seems as if everyone wants to chronicle and share their unboxing moments with all the web. And I do admit, I’m guilty as charged for doing this.

Tell me what you think!