Glitch in Apple's iMessage deletes words 'Obama,' 'surprise'

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
A strange issue with Apple's iMessage service deletes certain words when they are used at the end of specific sentences, with two cases already found pertaining to the words "Obama" and "surprise".

Glitch


Using iMessage to send the text "I could be the next Obama " with a trailing space after the last word results in a blank spot where the U.S. president's last name should be, as noted on Friday by The Verge. The same issue applies to the message "The best prize is a surprise ".

When sent from one iPhone to another, the text will show up blank on both users' screens. If the message is sent from a Mac using iMessage, the words "Obama" and "surprise" remain visible in OS X, but are invisible on the iPhone.

The two discovered, affected words appear visible until the "Send" button is hit. And the recipient will see the message in its entirety from their lock screen, only to have the word disappear once the iOS Messages application is opened.

Users can also copy and paste the message in order to see the missing word. It only disappears once it has been sent as an iMessage to another iPhone user.

Apple's OS X platform was affected by a similarly strange bug that would cause most Mac applications to crash by simply entering entering a certain combination of keystrokes. The crash, which was later fixed, could be accomplished by entering "File:///", with an uppercase 'F', into a standard text input space.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 38
    Ha! Apple shares to fall again!?
  • Reply 2 of 38
    sessamoidsessamoid Posts: 182member
    Just tried it. Doesn't happen to me.
  • Reply 3 of 38


    I wish I knew how the programming logic would work to even cause an error like that... some sort of mistake in censoring logic that's inconsistent in different areas of the program, maybe?

  • Reply 4 of 38
    r00fusr00fus Posts: 245member
    Clearly Apple is pandering to it's republican base
    /snark
  • Reply 5 of 38
    akf2000akf2000 Posts: 223member


    what the very ****?

  • Reply 6 of 38
    nagrommenagromme Posts: 2,834member
    I wish I could say this was a , but I can't. I try and I just can't!
  • Reply 7 of 38
    So if you type "surprise" by itself does iMessage deliver an empty message? Because that would be weird.
  • Reply 8 of 38


    Maybe unrelated but my bro recently sent me a pic using iMessage. It appeared in my lock screen. I swiped to get to iMessage to reply but the pic disappeared. I told him about it and he resent and it didn't disappear the second time. Odd but now that I see this report I think maybe it's not isolated.

  • Reply 9 of 38
    christophbchristophb Posts: 1,482member
    This could be the next BS.

    Edit: Although I sent it from a Mac to an iPhone using the Messages client.
  • Reply 10 of 38
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,407member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by appletouches View Post



    Ha! Apple shares to fall again!?


     


    Apple shares to rise!

  • Reply 11 of 38
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    1) Why are there so many weird issues with iMessage.

    2) Have they fixed the bug that results in iDevices seeing formatted hyperlinks as plaintext when sent from a Mac?

    3) This reminds of this line in Blackadder Goes Forth: George on being a lawyer, "I'm a complete duffer at this sort of thing. In the School Debating Society I was voted 'boy least likely to complete a coherent…erm'."

    So if you type "surprise" by itself does iMessage deliver an empty message? Because that would be weird.

    SURPRISE
  • Reply 12 of 38
    boogabooga Posts: 1,081member
    Confirmed it on my iPhone 4S running iOS 6.1.3.

    Maybe it was going to be a linking thing where they sent you to sponsor/Wikipedia/search page for certain terms?
  • Reply 13 of 38


    Good move by Apple.  I don't think anyone would want to be the next Obama.  image

  • Reply 14 of 38
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,712member
  • Reply 15 of 38
    mdriftmeyermdriftmeyer Posts: 7,503member
    Seems more plausible the servers handling IMs have daemons running on those services injecting and deleting random strings and/or image instance uploads.
  • Reply 16 of 38
    irelandireland Posts: 17,794member
    It wasn't a surprise when Obama didn't deliver on his promises.
  • Reply 17 of 38
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 3,430member
    "...by simply entering entering a..."

    Typos in stories here are not a surprise.
  • Reply 18 of 38
    First, you have to use your iPhone to see the message, not your Mac. I didn't try iPad but I believe it won't work neither. And I will tell you why.

    Second, you must add a space to the end of the sentence.

    It's a bug, not censorship. It happens when the sentence is of a certain width (at pixel level accuracy) and the last word is of a certain width. The last word disappears, because iOS decides it should wrap to the next line, but for some reason fails to display the second line.

    You can verify this by reordering the words (except for the last) and letters. For example, "I could be the next Obama " -> "be I eht dlouc netx maabO ". The last word "maabO" will disappear. You can even try "I bama be the next Ocould ". Don't forget the space at the end.
  • Reply 19 of 38
    tribalogicaltribalogical Posts: 1,182member


    confirmed it's a bug related somehow to line/character length, not at all related to the contents of the words themselves...

  • Reply 20 of 38
    christophbchristophb Posts: 1,482member
    leizhao4 wrote: »
    First, you have to use your iPhone to see the message, not your Mac. I didn't try iPad but I believe it won't work neither. And I will tell you why.

    Second, you must add a space to the end of the sentence.

    It's a bug, not censorship. It happens when the sentence is of a certain width (at pixel level accuracy) and the last word is of a certain width. The last word disappears, because iOS decides it should wrap to the next line, but for some reason fails to display the second line.

    You can verify this by reordering the words (except for the last) and letters. For example, "I could be the next Obama " -> "be I eht dlouc netx maabO ". The last word "maabO" will disappear. You can even try "I bama be the next Ocould ". Don't forget the space at the end.

    Well done. The best first post I've ever read.
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