Friends, Wi-Fi, and Gift Cards

Recently,  I promised to help a friend set up his phone so he can get on the internet. I don’t know why… or how… but the concept of wi-fi passed him up, even though he just walked out of a store with a brand new smart phone. (Do I know what he expected for his smart phone bucks? No, I do not.)

So I will be putting him online sometime this week.

And with that comes the question of internet commerce. (See: Ways to get pulled into setting up someone’s phone.)

You see, he asked where I got my phone case, and I said “Amazon.”

And he said–a little dejected–that he did not have a computer at home.

And I said… you guessed it. Uhm… why don’t you use your phone?

So, despite having a phone, and having recently purchased a card for said phone that almost certainly includes data… And which can use Wi-Fi…. Yeah. I’m setting up the phone.

I’m going to encourage him to use gift cards rather than credit cards to make purchases on the internet. It keeps him from typing his credit-card number into whatever random site strikes him, and it limits the amount of money he can lose, even if he makes his password “password” and uses public wi-fi at the laundromat.

I don’t want to just buy the phone case for him, because I think making internet purchases is a useful skill to have.

But realistically?

Sometimes old-fashioned, common-sense security is the best.


  1. Reply

    And it’s not like setting up internet on a phone takes a lot of skill (translation: even I can do it). But I do remember the first time I asked my younger son to download an application because I was afraid it would be too challenging. “Just do it, Mom. There’s nothing to show you.” I was stunned to discover he was right. I think a lot of people don’t try to master new technology because they think it will be too hard (some of it is, of course). You don’t need to know how to code to get a computer or iPhone to do most of the things you’d need it to.

    • Reply

      I do have friends I’d push to do the job themselves. This is an “individual circumstances” thing.

    • Reply

      Small towns. Our families have known each other for… probably about a hundred and fifty years now.

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