You, Too, Can Be Replaced By A Machine, Mr. Ranger

From the NPS Retirees’ forum:

A colleague returned recently from D.C., where he had visited the Lincoln Memorial. He told me that at the top of the stairs was a sign directing people to call the phone number with their cell phone to hear an NPS interpreter speak. A living interpreter, in this case, would probably have far better reach with visitors at the memorial. And, a living interpreter would be a far better representative of the US Govt than the impersonal sign with a cell phone icon.

The phone might be a perfect tool for after-hours interpretation, but why replace a human with a cell phone during the day? I don’t like it.

I think this technology has been applied more appropriately in places where a living ranger has never been an expectation (in a kayak for instance), but otherwise, replacing rangers with cell phones is poor practice.

All, right, I’ve been to programs where the interp was definitely phoning it in, but this is ridiculous.

What’s next?

Dial 911 For Do-It-Yourself First Aid Instructions?

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