To FUD or not to FUD

April 27th, 2011
by Christopher Kusek (PKGuild)

This is a question which comes up a lot in technology discussions; I’m sure it comes up in other circles but for the sake of argument… I work in Technology so let me focus on it here.  For those of you who are not familiar with the term let me break it down


Although there is often a ‘spin’ on that whereby the person delivering the data isn’t “Lying” but also isn’t telling the whole truth, that version of FUD I refer to as:  FACTS Usually Deceptive

With the very recent topical discussion in my most recent blog post here comes a breakdown of how you can tell FUD is in play if you’re not sure.


“If we don’t do it, the terrorists win!”    Yea, that quote comes up at times.    It’s simply saying you need to take action because you’re afraid of a possible outcome, it doesn’t have to be a LIKELY outcome, just one which MIGHT be possible often reinforced by soft words, because soft words are feeling words and fear is a feeling (often gutteral and one our instincts leap upon)  The old adage “no one ever got fired for buying IBM” is driven out of not wanting to lose your job so just buy IBM.  That term has been replaced over the years with “fill in blank of popular company name” and it stands true, typical FUD tactic.


What do you mean by uncertainty? “They’re a small company! They might not be around when YOU need support” or “Are you sure it works the way they say it does?” When these statements are in fact TRUE, absolutely staunchly support and stand by it, a perfect example, being worried about an earthquake taking down your datacenter in California is a real concern and falls in line with certainty, but fearing that same earthquake affecting your NYC data center or somewhere NOT on a major fault line?  Yea, push that Uncertainty in!    Don’t let it get the best of you, uncertainty like the rest of the FUD principles will often involve soft language of ‘are you sure’ followed by “no really… are you sure?” only the real veterans can be comfortable saying “Are you certain?” because I don’t know about you, but if I say 8000 LUNs are supported… I want to be CERTAIN of that FACT and be able to talk about it, and not “Oh yea, as many as you want! yea sure whatever you need!”    It’s important that not only are you CERTAIN your vendors are telling you the truth, but you are also confident and certain about what your needs and capabilities are.    Which brings us to…


Doubt springs eternal focused around lack of confidence, being unsure and uncertain, often leaving things suspect.   If you’re not afraid of it, and you’re not unsure of… you might be doubtful of it!    And by putting just a little doubt in your mind you’ll start to become unsure, and maybe, just maybe… be afraid and fear usually brings about action!  They don’t call it Fight or Flight for no particular reason … (Is that a flight of the conchords reference?!)


Do not find yourself all-consuming falling pressure to the effects of FUD.   I’m a big fan of FACTS, often validated and cited which can be backed up by references as well, as opposed to “Yea I totally got this paper from this guy” or “I read it in a one-off blog post which is otherwise irrelevant”  While these are all EXCELLENT sources of data sometimes… they’re downright lies, or are just wrong – But bad data can breed bad decisions, so make your decisions and trust is king as well.    Keep the FUD out!   This has been a public service advisory on keeping our streets FUD Free! :)

Tags: , , , ,
Posted in Informational | Comments (1)

  • Your definitions are correct. I also usually add Fu$ked Up Data to the mix.

  • Archives