Monday, June 05, 2006

Wear that label

Much (and I mean much) has been said about those crazy tags on mattresses and other stuff that say "Removing this tag is a federal offense punishable up to life in prison or execution" or something to that effect.

But has anyone stopped to look at all the weird labels that are over our electronics these days? For example, look at this barrage of certifications that are featured on the back of my MP3 player:Now I'm fairly certain the first logo (FCC) means that the device has been certified by the Federal Communication Commission as not causing harmful interference, and I know that the CE logo means that the player has met all applicable European Union standards, and the last logo clearly refers to the player's USB compatibility. However, I am honestly unsure as to what the 3rd logo means.
I would have guessed that the trash can with an x through it was probably a warning that the device carries hazardous materials that must be disposed of in a non-standard trash can manner. However, I have yet to find anything anywhere on any governmental agency or hippie webpage taking credit for the environmentally-friendly warning labels.

This creates a dilemma.

We all know that those tree-hugging types are often shameless attention hogs - they love taking the credit and spotlight for everything. In other words, it seems highly unlikely that a "green" agency would pass up a chance to score some brownie points with Mother Earth.

Therefore, with the lack of information regarding this subject on the Internet, I must conclude that this label is not a warning of hazardous contents, but rather an indicator that this product is "not trash." To be blunt, this is far more comforting to a consumer like me anyway. I mean seriously, which label would you rather have on your new iPod?

"If improperly disposed of, this product could kill hapless gophers!"
"This project is most assuredly not a cheap piece of crap!"

Unless you've got some crazy powerful gopher-grudge, you're definitely choosing the Non-Crap Certification.

I could be wrong. But I really have found NOTHING about this elusive label on the web. The closest I got was this gem from the California Integrated Waste Management Board:CJ Translation of Californispeak: The devices should be labeled when not hazardous.

I've sent an email to the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality for some answers (leaving out my "not-crap" theory of course), but until they respond or someone reading this enlightens me, I'm in the dark.

But while I'm trying to figure out what this all means, allow me to take this opportunity to assure you that Unknown Knowns and Other Ramblings is certified Non-Trash. To prove it as such, I have added one of those labels to the bottom of this website.

Just to be safe.

UPDATE: You can read the thrilling (not really) conclusion here!


Carol said...

Here is a similar label with a vintage trash can. It comes from Vermont

Anonymous said...

Hmmm, very interesting. It certainly looks like a possible predecessor to my label.

Perhaps I should have emailed Vermont instead...

tabelzey said...

Interesting analysis of the mp3 player deffinately something to look into. I however was enlightened the whole time as I read your distinct desciptions so on and so forth;-)

ManNMotion said...

Are you sure it's not a BBQ Grill?