Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is being ridiculed on social media after he posted a tweet praising “innovation” – by sharing a QR code to Twitter.
Considering many website cites the fact that 80 per cent of users interact with the social media network on their mobiles – the same technology people need to scan such a graphic – sharing a QR code to Twitter instead of a link is about as intelligent as incentivising people to eat out at a restaurant during a deadly pandemic.
If you were wondering, the graphic or ‘quick response code’ (yes, that’s what it stands for) encourages you to download an app called Adobe Aero – no, we haven’t heard of it either.
After that, the QR code becomes a 3D, augmented reality (AR) display, which states: “[A] £250m investment in AI, quantum and engineering biology makes us [a] science superpower by 2030 and creates jobs [and] economic growth for people of the UK.”
It then links to a press release on the GOV.UK website announcing the UK Government’s 10-point Science and Technology Framework – a plan which it hopes will enable the country to become “a science and technology superpower” by the end of the decade.
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“The more we innovate, the more we can grow our economy, create the high-paid jobs of the future, protect our security, and improve lives across the country,” Mr Sunak said.
The policy is the first major plan from the new Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, which was established last month alongside three others as part of a government reshuffle.
However, the government’s latest attempt to appear hip and cool has instead been widely mocked by the electorate:
\u201c@RishiSunak I scanned this at the self checkout in sainsburys and now I owe twenty seven pounds eighty two pence for shallots who at the Treasury do I contact about it\u201d— Rishi Sunak (@Rishi Sunak) 1678103364
\u201c@RishiSunak Am I going to get my phone out to photograph this and install some app to open it, when you could have just posted a link? Anyway, "Look, a QR code*, such innovation!". \n\n*invented in the 90s and which I first used in the 2000s.\u201d— Rishi Sunak (@Rishi Sunak) 1678103364
\u201c@RishiSunak Am I scanning this with my fridge???\u201d— Rishi Sunak (@Rishi Sunak) 1678103364
\u201c@RishiSunak Jeez. I just opened this - using two devices as that's the only way to make it work - and it's a cheesy slice of text-only WordArt AR that a teenage could have done. The actual AR was shorter that the steps required to access it. Ancient technology, poorly executed.\u201d— Rishi Sunak (@Rishi Sunak) 1678103364
\u201c@RishiSunak Could you fax this over to me so I can scan it on my phone?\u201d— Rishi Sunak (@Rishi Sunak) 1678103364
\u201c@RishiSunak The text link was also a wonderful innovation.\u201d— Rishi Sunak (@Rishi Sunak) 1678103364
\u201c@RishiSunak INT. DAY. 10 Downing St.\n\n"Yes, I get it, but how will people SCAN it if they're already USING their phone just to see it on Twitter?"\n\n"They could print it out and THEN scan it?"\n\n"That doesn't exactly scream 'innovation'."\n\n"The paper was created in an innovative paper mill?"\u201d— Rishi Sunak (@Rishi Sunak) 1678103364
\u201cThis tweet couldn\u2019t be any less accessible\u201d— Owen O\u2019Williams \ud83c\udff4\udb40\udc67\udb40\udc62\udb40\udc77\udb40\udc6c\udb40\udc73\udb40\udc7f (@Owen O\u2019Williams \ud83c\udff4\udb40\udc67\udb40\udc62\udb40\udc77\udb40\udc6c\udb40\udc73\udb40\udc7f) 1678111569
\u201cThe govt new Science Framework does not have a single word on its manifesto promise to associate with Horizon.\n\nScientists are still having to choose between the country they love and the funding they need. \n\nYet the PM is posting QR codes telling people to... download Adobe?\u201d— Chi Onwurah \ud83d\udc99 (@Chi Onwurah \ud83d\udc99) 1678113651
\u201cIf you get impostor syndrome, read this.\n\nThis is a real press release from the UK Prime Minister. He tweeted a QR code which:\n\n- Mobile Twitter users can't scan\n- Requires @AdobeAero\n- Breaks on Android\n- Glitches on iOS\n\nAnd if you jump through the hoops... THIS is the result.\u201d— Antonia Forster \ud83d\udd1c GDC2023 (@Antonia Forster \ud83d\udd1c GDC2023) 1678114209
And so, not only is our government broken, but the bizarre codes it shares on its social media platforms, too.
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