Dilbert - C or D?

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Sharp truths about the modern workplace? The same old jokes done by someone who can't draw? Both? Neither?

Tom (Groke), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 16:06 (fourteen years ago) link

I don't read it religously, but it's got a true quality to it. Probably what The Office and Office Space are based upon...

Vermont Girl (Vermont Girl), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 16:09 (fourteen years ago) link

The jokes and writing: classic.
The artwork: dud.

n/a (Nick A.), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 16:18 (fourteen years ago) link

It's funny because it's true etc.

Jordan (Jordan), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 16:24 (fourteen years ago) link

I can sort of see a kind of funny in it that I just can't appreciate, which I think is because I've never had anything remotely like an office job. I think it's definitely in that category of "stuff you need to be able to relate to to like."

Tep (ktepi), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 16:28 (fourteen years ago) link

Oh, very very dud. I sorta blame them for the continuation of office culture, if only we could break free*

*I may be being a little melodramatic.

jel -- (jel), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 16:29 (fourteen years ago) link

C: occasional strains of rampant surrealism i.e. Hammerhead Bob, Floyd Remora, the Meeting Moth.

D: Elbonia. "It's a meeting - ABOUT MEETINGS!!!!!!! Do you see?"

Vic Fluro, Tuesday, 19 October 2004 16:30 (fourteen years ago) link

I think it was more accurate a few years ago than it is now - office culture is a lot less process-oriented and more, uh, Brentian.

Tom (Groke), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 16:31 (fourteen years ago) link

I blame Adams' shitty artwork on the proliferation of the auteur theory in types of art over the past few decades. It's not enough to be good at one thing anymore (ie, writing jokes), you have to do everything yourself to be considered an artist. In popular music, this is largely the fault of the Beatles (after which, it wasn't cool for bands to play songs by nonbandmember songwriters anymore, the bands had to write the songs themselves); I'm not sure who is to blame in terms of comics.

n/a (Nick A.), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 17:52 (fourteen years ago) link

Has the non-auteur model ever applied in newspaper strips though?

I read someone (Bill Watterson?) arguing that the rise of non-artist Adams types was down to the space available for a strip shrinking and a (linked) lack of editorial concern/respect for drawing and storytelling in cartoons.

Tom (Groke), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 17:54 (fourteen years ago) link

I like the really offensive Dilbert knock-offs. Set sail for Dick!

DV (dirtyvicar), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 18:31 (fourteen years ago) link

With something like Dilbert I don't think it matters at all whether the art's pretty or not. It's just the medium through which the gags reach us, and it serves that purpose fine.

Wooden (Wooden), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 19:34 (fourteen years ago) link

Is that what n/a stands for? "Non/autership"? Wild.
ANyway, uh, out of the 260 strips a year, there are some good ones, a lot of ones I wonder why I wasted 3 seconds reading, and a few I wish I had died before I noticed.

Huk-L, Tuesday, 19 October 2004 20:00 (fourteen years ago) link

I'm not anti-auteur, I just with that there wasn't so much shame in hiring someone to write songs for you if you're a good singer but a bad songwriter, or hiring someone to draw your comics if you're good at writing jokes but a bad artist. But I really have to emphasize that I know little to nothing about comics, so this whole auteur thing is just a theory I tossed up here, not really sure if it really applies to comics.

n/a (Nick A.), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 20:28 (fourteen years ago) link

I think in alternative comics writer/artists are the norm, and in newspaper strips. In mainstream (i.e. Marvel, DC, publishers who want to be either of those) comics division of labour still applies.

Obviously I agree with the pop stuff - outsource stuff you can't do well!

Tom (Groke), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 20:33 (fourteen years ago) link

One of the few division-of-labor comic strips I can think of is Penny Arcade. Maybe it's more common in webcomics, for some reason?

I just with that there wasn't so much shame in hiring someone to write songs for you if you're a good singer but a bad songwriter

It's true, you have to form a band with a good songwriter to make it socially acceptable. It would be kind of cool to be the Frank Sinatra of rock bands, though, like a cover band except you'd be playing songs no one has heard yet.

Jordan (Jordan), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 20:39 (fourteen years ago) link

There are a lot of the same jokes done over and over but fortunately I still find them funny.

"No way, I've gotta bring this sucker in for a landing! (Can I do that in Excel?)"

The Ghost of Dan Perry (Dan Perry), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 20:41 (fourteen years ago) link

Dilbert jokes we still get mileage out of, #1 of ???:

The boss's laptop needs to be shaken to reboot it, because it is in fact an etch-a-sketch.

(I think it captured in detail that weird period when you had to have non-high-tech managers in high-tech companies, because that's all there was.)

Andrew Farrell (afarrell), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 20:49 (fourteen years ago) link

#2 of ???

"I was just wondering, if you died, would the coffee cup walk around by itself?"

(this is more universal, I suspect)

Andrew Farrell (afarrell), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 20:50 (fourteen years ago) link

#3 of ???

"40% of sick days are taken on Friday and Monday; this is unacceptable."

The Ghost of Dan Perry (Dan Perry), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 21:00 (fourteen years ago) link

I find it pretty funny now and again, and hopeless other times. Yeah, the art is very weak. As for the auteur theory in comic strips, it's more honoured in name than fact, as loads of people have 'assistants' who actually draw the strips. This is generally but not always a good thing.

Martin Skidmore (Martin Skidmore), Tuesday, 19 October 2004 21:55 (fourteen years ago) link


Chriddof (Chriddof), Wednesday, 20 October 2004 02:50 (fourteen years ago) link

The art suits the subject, I think - monotony, focus shifted to the banality of hte conent and so on. Its also standard for the medium and does that understated line art trick of conveying a great deal through very little.

As for the comedy - sometimes stomach creasingly funny, innevitably suffers from massive production targets, of course. And the material, as pointed out above, IS dating, alas.

The books are plenty of the notions formalised and expanded to complete theories, and I'd hazard form a decent insight into employee motivations.

That Slazberg, Tuesday, 26 October 2004 22:05 (fourteen years ago) link

(I think it captured in detail that weird period when you had to have non-high-tech managers in high-tech companies, because that's all there was.)

but there is nothing weird about that... bosses have boss skills, which are entirely different to doing things skills, so small wonder that bosses become head of the World Wide Wicket Corporation when they don't really know what a wicket is and whether you can eat it.

anyway, this is what you should be looking at: http://pied.nu/banned/the_Dilbert_Hole/tn/14.gif.html

DV (dirtyvicar), Wednesday, 27 October 2004 18:12 (fourteen years ago) link


(the best part is how Wally is virtually unchanged from the real comic strip)

The Ghost of Dan Perry (Dan Perry), Wednesday, 27 October 2004 18:24 (fourteen years ago) link


David R. (popshots75`), Wednesday, 27 October 2004 18:26 (fourteen years ago) link

"I thought he said cake boat."

The Ghost of Dan Perry (Dan Perry), Wednesday, 27 October 2004 18:28 (fourteen years ago) link

I'm amazed that the rude Dilbert cartoon is still on the web (given that THE MAN made them re-draw Marxbert so that the characters were just square blocks).

DV (dirtyvicar), Wednesday, 27 October 2004 19:43 (fourteen years ago) link

more here (for those who can't trace back links): http://pied.nu/banned/the_Dilbert_Hole/

DV (dirtyvicar), Wednesday, 27 October 2004 19:45 (fourteen years ago) link

four years pass...

this guy is a right wing creationist douche

it's darn and ielle is hot (and what), Wednesday, 25 February 2009 18:39 (ten years ago) link

Isn't he a Satanist?

Britpoppage (The stickman from the hilarious xkcd comics), Wednesday, 25 February 2009 18:45 (ten years ago) link


^^^this is some high-end useful idiocy

Britpoppage (The stickman from the hilarious xkcd comics), Wednesday, 25 February 2009 18:46 (ten years ago) link

If you let a guy like that express his views, before long the entire world will want freedom
of speech.

Um, is this sentence a joke?

chap, Wednesday, 25 February 2009 19:01 (ten years ago) link

OK, the whole thing's a joke.

chap, Wednesday, 25 February 2009 19:03 (ten years ago) link

I was gonna say!

Lots of praying with no breakfast! (HI DERE), Wednesday, 25 February 2009 19:03 (ten years ago) link

Doesn't sound like a right wing creatonist here:


Tuomas, Thursday, 26 February 2009 14:35 (ten years ago) link

Actuallt, if you read his blog, he sounds more like a science geek with some libertarian leanings rather than a right wing creationist. Where'd you get that idea?

Tuomas, Thursday, 26 February 2009 14:44 (ten years ago) link

A cartoon engineer, that's what he is.

M.V., Thursday, 26 February 2009 15:47 (ten years ago) link

two years pass...

Scott Adams, feminist

Ah, Dilbert. For so long, you have lingered there on the comics page, always ready to barrel-shoot the inanity of office culture with your humorously-coiffed characters and beleaguered engineers, locked forever in a corporate development hell that your humor at first mocked, and then later resembled.

Mostly, though, I haven't really paid attention to you at all, at least until today, when the internet discovered a post where Dilbert creator Scott Adams gave us all a piece of his mind in a post (since deleted) about men's rights, and the fact that he thinks men suffer a level of social injustice equal to women.

After all, women might get paid less than men in our society, but men die earlier, teen boys have to pay higher car insurance, and sometimes women want men to open doors for them, so it all comes out in the wash, right? I'm not making those examples up, either; those are his examples.

And then there's this:

"The reality is that women are treated differently by society for exactly the same reason that children and the mentally handicapped are treated differently. It's just easier this way for everyone. You don't argue with a four-year old about why he shouldn't eat candy for dinner. You don't punch a mentally handicapped guy even if he punches you first. And you don't argue when a women tells you she's only making 80 cents to your dollar. It's the path of least resistance. You save your energy for more important battles." -Scott Adams

Wow. Just wow. To recap: He's comparing women asking for equal pay to the selfishness and unreasonableness of children asking for candy, or mentally handicapped people lashing out violently. He's saying that women's concern for pay equity is a petty desire levied by an irrational group of people, and he's also suggesting a very specific strategy for the men in the audience: Remember not to care.

If the above block of text reminds you of Dave Sim at all, that's because this rhetoric does exactly the same thing as Sim's in terms of infantilizing women and casting them as primarily emotional and irrational beings that men can only deal with by ignoring them most of the time, or sighing bitterly while turning up the volume on their sports game.

Women, amirite? To his credit, he recognizes that this is basically an insane comparison to make, but then not to his credit, makes it anyway. (Note: Saying something and then saying that you're not saying it doesn't magically unsay it.) He continues:

"I realize I might take some heat for lumping women, children and the mentally handicapped in the same group. So I want to be perfectly clear. I'm not saying women are similar to either group. I'm saying that a man's best strategy for dealing with each group is disturbingly similar. If he's smart, he takes the path of least resistance most of the time, which involves considering the emotional realities of other people. A man only digs in for a good fight on the few issues that matter to him, and for which he has some chance of winning. This is a strategy that men are uniquely suited for because, on average, we genuinely don't care about 90% of what is happening around us."

Adams' original blog entry (since deleted): http://tinysprout.tumblr.com/post/3713649989/scott-adams-dilbert-deleted-post

Stockhausen's Ekranoplan Quartet (Elvis Telecom), Wednesday, 30 March 2011 19:33 (eight years ago) link

haha omg

I can never tell when Scott Adams is serious and when he's trolling

whelping at his sandpapery best (DJP), Wednesday, 30 March 2011 19:37 (eight years ago) link

If the above block of text reminds you of Dave Sim at all,

this was my first thought actually

in my world of loose geirs (Shakey Mo Collier), Wednesday, 30 March 2011 20:41 (eight years ago) link

Practically everything Scott Adams writes is dripping with about five levels of bitter, self-hating sarcasm, though, which makes it difficult for me to take this completely at face value.

Like, I would not at all be surprised if he was taking a Neanderthal tone in order to set up and pull the rug out from underneath people, which seems to go along with the shellshocked reactions some of these critiques are posting.

Having said that, I haven't read it yet so maybe the whole piece really is way out of step with his usual steeze, or just an epic failure in conveying appropriate tone, or maybe he is Dave Sim 2.0.

whelping at his sandpapery best (DJP), Wednesday, 30 March 2011 21:09 (eight years ago) link

A woman had a show about bible secrets on the BBC the other week which was basically Chasing YooWHoo.

I said Omorotic, not homo-erotic (aldo), Thursday, 31 March 2011 18:02 (eight years ago) link

Adams since reposted the deleted blog entry and a "you are all idiots" followup. Perhaps downgrade from Dave Sim to Lileks territory?

Stockhausen's Ekranoplan Quartet (Elvis Telecom), Friday, 1 April 2011 01:20 (eight years ago) link

what a weird guy

call all destroyer, Friday, 1 April 2011 01:30 (eight years ago) link

If any of you have a Salon account, could you do me a favor and head over to the articles by these binarian unibators and provide a link to my explanation of the Men's Rights controversy in its proper context?

difficult listening hour, Friday, 1 April 2011 05:30 (eight years ago) link

I write material for a specific sort of audience. And when the piece on Men's Rights drew too much attention from outside my normal reading circle, it changed the meaning. Communication becomes distorted when you take it out of context, even if you don't change a word of the text. I image that you are dubious about this. It's hard to believe this sort of thing if you don't write for a living and see how often it happens. I'll explain.

(emphasis scott adams')

difficult listening hour, Friday, 1 April 2011 05:32 (eight years ago) link

two weeks pass...

Dude has not been helping his case lately.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 15 April 2011 20:43 (eight years ago) link

hoo boy

fat fat fat fat Usher (DJP), Friday, 15 April 2011 20:50 (eight years ago) link

see? victory!

mh, Monday, 23 October 2017 23:27 (one year ago) link

i used to work in the same building where scott adams got all his dilbert stuff. pretty sure the dude who inspired wally (at least visually) was in a cubicle across the hall from me

brimstead, Monday, 23 October 2017 23:30 (one year ago) link

on a more positive note, the harsh noise wally comic had a couple updates I missed: http://harshnoisewally.tumblr.com/

mh, Monday, 23 October 2017 23:33 (one year ago) link

how the hell did nobody inform me about harsh noise wally until today

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 24 October 2017 02:28 (one year ago) link

I blame everyone but myself

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 24 October 2017 02:28 (one year ago) link

i apologize

mh, Tuesday, 24 October 2017 03:25 (one year ago) link

I think I shared it here before but maybe just messaged rrrobyn lol

mh, Tuesday, 24 October 2017 03:28 (one year ago) link

Has he followed it up yet, with his usual "Of course I could be wrong about this" disclaimer?

Chuck_Tatum, Tuesday, 24 October 2017 13:51 (one year ago) link

I want a white noise tie!

"the fgti incident?" (Whiney G. Weingarten), Tuesday, 24 October 2017 13:54 (one year ago) link

The unreported tragedy of 2017 is that managers will likely hire fewer women to reduce their perceived legal risk. #WeinsteinEffect

— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) November 4, 2017

frogbs, Saturday, 4 November 2017 22:04 (one year ago) link

his ratios are depressing

El Tomboto, Saturday, 4 November 2017 23:58 (one year ago) link

two months pass...

#POTUSRap @ScottAdamsSays @realDonaldTrump @DonaldJTrumpJr 🤘🇺🇸💯😎🤣 pic.twitter.com/dlaCv6EQ7O

— Kathie 🇺🇸💎ツ (@MustangGirl3) January 28, 2018

remember when this dude had a somewhat functioning sense of humor

frogbs, Tuesday, 30 January 2018 20:25 (one year ago) link


Chocolate-covered gummy bears? Not ruling those lil' guys out. (ulysses), Tuesday, 30 January 2018 22:42 (one year ago) link

three months pass...

lmao he's still defending the women = mentally handicapped joke and whining incessantly about being labeled and MRA and "alt-right". seems like all the dudes out there who never shut the fuck up have finally came to roost in 2018

frogbs, Tuesday, 1 May 2018 19:59 (one year ago) link

one month passes...

I would have used public schools as my example. https://t.co/Ywwq9FlO6l

— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) June 17, 2018

Only took a year to go from “if he exhibits any Hitler-like behavior I’ll kill him” to this

frogbs, Sunday, 17 June 2018 14:11 (one year ago) link

Clearly still upset about his first day in kindergarten

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Sunday, 17 June 2018 14:15 (one year ago) link

Members of my family literally died here! Fun jokes.

Chuck_Tatum, Tuesday, 19 June 2018 21:25 (one year ago) link

Not sure who that's directed at. Don't think anyone was making light of the holocaust.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Tuesday, 19 June 2018 23:52 (one year ago) link

Adams being flippant. No one here!

Chuck_Tatum, Wednesday, 20 June 2018 10:30 (one year ago) link

brain worms really seem to be kicking into overdrive lately

You took the pro-child-trafficking side over the temporary cages side. There were only two options on the table. https://t.co/53zTFaOwug

— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) June 19, 2018

frogbs, Wednesday, 20 June 2018 12:24 (one year ago) link

four weeks pass...

BREAKING: “Wouldn’t” is the new Rosie O’Donnell play. Or is it? https://t.co/w9i0n6jr2T

— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) July 17, 2018

not watching this but it's pretty lol watching him have a fully fledged meltdown in the comments

frogbs, Wednesday, 18 July 2018 14:44 (one year ago) link

are those readable somewhere?

kelp, clam and carrion (sic), Wednesday, 18 July 2018 21:02 (one year ago) link

I mean the replies in the thread, such as:

Your confusion and lack of context are noted. You probably shouldn't make comments in a public forum. It isn't your strong suit.

— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) July 18, 2018

How ignorant of you. I criticize the president on healthcare, race relations, statues, immigration, and other stuff. You just lost all of your credibility.

— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) July 18, 2018

Goodbye Hitler.

— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) July 17, 2018

frogbs, Wednesday, 18 July 2018 21:11 (one year ago) link

ah I clicked on the periscope embed, not the twitter embed

kelp, clam and carrion (sic), Wednesday, 18 July 2018 21:53 (one year ago) link

Scott Adams is the dril 'I'm not owned' tweet made flesh

Arthur Funzonerelli (stevie), Wednesday, 18 July 2018 23:59 (one year ago) link

the startup he's affiliated with is hilarious bubble bullshit


sign me up, I'm an expert

El Tomboto, Thursday, 19 July 2018 00:52 (one year ago) link

Tomboto, What are the top five keywords that attract viewers to your platform?

mick signals, Thursday, 19 July 2018 02:02 (one year ago) link

amazing how Scott Adams in 2018 is currently pushing an idiotic tech startup with no clear use case while spending his spare time mounting a full-throated defense of the Pointy-Haired Boss

frogbs, Thursday, 19 July 2018 13:01 (one year ago) link

two weeks pass...

lmao say hi to the new chief of staff

Today I had the honor of meeting your favorite president. I already feel sorry for whoever runs against him in 2020. @POTUS @realDonaldTrump pic.twitter.com/Ln1kpX6tUn

— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) August 2, 2018

frogbs, Friday, 3 August 2018 03:49 (one year ago) link

Reality is wrong

Chuck_Tatum, Friday, 3 August 2018 14:00 (one year ago) link

Having characters like the pointy-haired boss and Topper, Adams' fawning POTUS admiration lacks so much self-awareness it's almost impressive.

the body of a spider... (scampering alpaca), Friday, 3 August 2018 14:56 (one year ago) link

just imagining Scott Adams thinking of this as the validation of his life's work and his one chance to steer American history while Trump forgets everything he told him 5 minutes afterwards

frogbs, Friday, 3 August 2018 16:04 (one year ago) link


this is exactly where I figured he'd end up in 2018

frogbs, Thursday, 9 August 2018 19:42 (one year ago) link

four months pass...

Rest in peace :(

#RacistGoogle won't take down the photoshopped image of me in Nazi uniform. Why not? @sundarpichai This marks me for death. pic.twitter.com/kwUSjjpp99

— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) December 19, 2018

frogbs, Thursday, 20 December 2018 15:21 (eight months ago) link

wow marked for death. what a cool society i didn't realize we lived in where just being photoshopped w/ a swastika armband means you will soon be reaped.

Mordy, Thursday, 20 December 2018 16:05 (eight months ago) link

it's a shame, he was a horrible cartoonist and a terrible human being.

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Thursday, 20 December 2018 16:18 (eight months ago) link

seems miserable and completely neurotic

rip van wanko, Thursday, 20 December 2018 16:24 (eight months ago) link

I know this is an unpopular opinion, but I don't think Scott Adams should be murdered, and it's a real shame that he's going to be

Screamin' Jay Gould (The Yellow Kid), Thursday, 20 December 2018 17:44 (eight months ago) link

perhaps he can try hypnotizing his murderer into turning the gun on himself

frogbs, Thursday, 20 December 2018 18:33 (eight months ago) link

Hey @Patreon, this guy posted racist memes of me photoshopped into a Nazi uniform. That is hate speech. Puts my life at risk. Please deplatform him immediately. https://t.co/sf78vfcYN6

— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) December 20, 2018

geez Scott did you forget about the hundreds of people you called Nazis because they disagreed with you

frogbs, Thursday, 20 December 2018 20:38 (eight months ago) link

seven months pass...

grifters gonna grift

Dilbert guy Scott Adams is using the garlic festival shooting to direct market mass shooting survivors (at a time when public info on this was that the shooter was still at large) on his app pic.twitter.com/9EgGfSGkuz

— LVL 45 CHAOS POTUS (@thetomzone) July 29, 2019

another no-holds-barred Tokey Wedge adventure for men (bizarro gazzara), Monday, 29 July 2019 14:30 (three weeks ago) link

we're reaching levels of persuasion which shouldn't even be possible

frogbs, Monday, 29 July 2019 15:43 (three weeks ago) link



Anyone who signed up to discuss the shooting could also have been paid in the WHEN Token, a cryptocurrency Adams has used to fund his app that is currently worth slightly more than one cent. Shortly before Adams announced WhenHub’s cryptocurrency aspect in 2017, Dilbert watchers noticed that the characters in the comic, who are typically suspicious of poorly understood business crazes like blockchain, were suddenly running straightforward explanations of blockchain in an apparent effort to drum up interest in Adams’s cryptocurrency.

frogbs, Monday, 29 July 2019 17:42 (three weeks ago) link

It would've been interesting to see how newspapers responded in a world where a comic strip version of Cerebus had been the public forum where we watched Dave Sim's mind unravel.

my but is not working it kept telling me device not found. (Old Lunch), Monday, 29 July 2019 18:10 (three weeks ago) link

he’d have jordan peterson’s career

another no-holds-barred Tokey Wedge adventure for men (bizarro gazzara), Monday, 29 July 2019 18:14 (three weeks ago) link

Some amazing replies from Scott fans pic.twitter.com/JvlMZhRSTk

— pixelatedboat aka “mr tweets” (@pixelatedboat) July 29, 2019

El Tomboto, Monday, 29 July 2019 20:26 (three weeks ago) link

probably goes without saying but this WhenHub app is hilariously dumb, it's pretty much exactly the sort of thing that Dilbert was satirizing back in the 90's. 500 features and no clear use case, plus it uses a blockchain for some reason - this "pay to speak to an expert" thing is clearly NOT what the app was designed to do, though it's kinda hilarious that there's a dude offering to chat about football for 20 bucks an hour

frogbs, Tuesday, 30 July 2019 14:05 (three weeks ago) link

I retroactively hate that this guy had a guest spot on NewsRadio.

the last Berry La Croix in the work fridge (morrisp), Tuesday, 30 July 2019 19:09 (three weeks ago) link

(and don't @ me about Rogan)

the last Berry La Croix in the work fridge (morrisp), Tuesday, 30 July 2019 19:11 (three weeks ago) link

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