Have you ever heard the expression, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it"? Well, that expression is famous for a reason. Greatness is not a never-ending upward slope, but a delicate balance on the peak of a mountaintop which at any moment may tip and fall down the hill. These companies took their products on a downward sleigh ride.

u/rambos_left_bicep asked:

What perfectly good product was made worse when they "improved" it?

Here were some of those answers.

They Are Decidedly Not Sorry


The board game Sorry. Used to love sorrying my opponent and getting that sweet win at long last. Got it for my sister for Christmas and apparently now there's only 3 pawns and the cards are all way better. Heck you can get out of start with any card so a sorry doesn't hurt at all.


It Ain't Magic No More

Citrus Magic discs. For anyone unfamiliar with them, they're cheap little scented discs that you can get at the grocery store with a sticker that covers the top. The disc is about 1 to 2 inches thick and has a scented wax type material inside.

The old Citrus Magic discs (the white ones) were SUPER potent. Got a small bathroom with no ventilation? Get a Citrus Magic disc, peel the sticker off it and stick that bad boy on the back of the toilet! Your bathroom will reek of citrus for DAYS!

Now they redesigned them and added a couple other scents. The citrus scent comes in this awful avocado green color and has no where near the potency the old ones had. In fact, it's barely even scented at all. Definitely high up on the list of disappointing sh*t in my life.

Anyway, that concludes my rant about Citrus Magic discs. Hope you enjoyed yourself. I didn't.


Rubber Teeth

This one's kinda obscure.

In Taiwan, there was this toothpaste called "Black Man's Toothpaste." Originally, the toothpaste was actually really good, having a refreshing and slightly sweet minty taste. But then they redid the formula and the new taste is mint plus this really nasty chemical/rubber taste.


The End Of An Era

Yahoo. They f*cked up the entire website. Answers and games were both good ways to kill time, they remodeled it and I never went back.

For those asking about how Answers changed, once upon a time Answers was this clean green user friendly interface. It was easy to navigate, wasn't cluttered and just simple. They remodeled it, took the green away and changed the structure and view of the page. It was a cluttered, ad filled mess that made little sense. I tried it for one day and said goodbye to my years on answers with Top Contributor status and never went back.


Mmm, Mmm, ...Not So Good


Cheez Whiz was reformulated so it would melt easier in the microwave oven. But that changed the flavor and texture, and it's never been as good as before the switch.

Campbell's condensed soups have all had their recipes changed. Now the chicken noodle one has little or no chunks of chicken in it, and the broth tastes like water that rolled by a chicken once. Yech.


Cardboard's For Kids

About every single cereal that I remember from my childhood has been "improved" and cost-optimized to taste like over-sweetened cardboard.

For those who think it is just my palate changing preferences, there's lots of examples where businesses have been swapping ingredients to cut costs.

They have also responded to public pressures to remove artificial ingredients and colors, and people hate it because it changes the taste.

multiple examples




The Reason Reddit Exists

I was an early employee at Digg through nearly the end so I can speak to this. Digg V3 was losing evermore traffic to Facebook, Twitter and Reddit. Staying the same was not an option. At that inflection point in particular, Twitter was very hot and the idea of 'following' people was thought to be the way forward. When V4 was mocked up and beta testers were let in the engagement was actually really quite good - better than V3 for sure. By the end we had opened beta to I think 40K people and the feedback was encouraging.

A big problem we had in V3 was always flirting with near write-saturation of our databases (reaching the limit at which we could write data to the single machine master) so for V4 we decided to switch to Cassandra which is "highly writable" (can write to many machines) and wouldn't have that problem. Cassandra was very new and not yet tested at the levels of Digg and sadly when V4 launched it completely fell apart. The dev or ops teams had very little sleep for about 4 days as we tried everything possible to mitigate the problems. We eventually did, but the damage was done.

While it's easy to say 'boy, you guys did something stupid' it only looks that way because from the outside you don't know that things were trending downwards and we had to make a major technical change (even if we stayed on V3) if the site was going to grow. You can argue the changes for V4 were ultimately what the public did not want, but again, many of those changes were made specifically based on user feedback and an extensive beta. There was a whole team of Product people trying to give the public what they were asking for.

If I could mention one thing that I think the uppermost management did wrong (likely driven by the investors) was to try and make Digg the next CNN (in terms of being a large media company) and not allowing 'self posts' (like Reddit does) which makes it more of a forum system. There were those of us that thought we should do that, but honestly there wasn't likely to be any money in it (see how Reddit struggles) and at that point it did seem like you could have a user-driven wisdom of the crowds media company which would compete with the big guys. Of course it's easy to look back and see that was the wrong way to go, but no one knew for sure then...


I Can't Believe It's Not Bubbles

F*cking scrubbing bubbles bathroom cleaner. Not only are the containers smaller, but you have to spray for a goddamn hour before the foam comes out. And now I actually have to scrub the bathtub when I clean it, IVE NEVER HAD TO DO THAT WITH THE OLD SPRAY, THE DIRT JUST CAME OFF

I don't want your new citrus scent I want my old bathroom cleaner that f*cking worked.

Edit: For those seeking an alternative; Clorox bleach, Kaboom, Melamine foam (had to look this up), and Comet liquid or powder are all legit. Also u/F*ckMississippi, a true intellectual, recommends using a cheap broom to stand and scrub your tub instead of bending over to do so.


The Hallmark Of Puzzle Games

Tetris on the original Nintendo Game Boy.

I think I've tried all of the iPhone variants of Tetris, web versions, and nothing comes close to replicating the feel of the original.

On a smartphone, it doesn't help that there are no hardware buttons. Tapping on the screen obviously will never feel the same.

Oh, and the Game Boy never popped up and asked me to pay for boosters with fake in-game currency.


FM To Funeral


Car radios. Hear me out.

About a year ago, we got a trailblazer, early 2000's model. Good SUV, I got no complaints, except for the f*cking car radio the previous owner installed. Everybody was going on and on about how this radio is a great, top of the line, brand new radio. Its sh*t. Want to know why?

This f*cking radio has a touch screen. There are no knobs that control it. Want to increase the volume? Touch screen. Change the channel? Touch screen. Switch to CD player? Touch screen. Want to preset a radio channel so you can flip to it without searching the channels? Touch screen.

You know what you can't do while driving? LOOK DOWN AT A F*CKING TOUCH SCREEN. The entire screen feels the same, there's no way for me to non-visually orient myself to figure out what does what. If I want to turn up the volume, I have to look down. If I want to change the channel, I have to look down. If I want to do ANYTHING with this f*cking radio, I have to look down. If I turn on the radio and I don't like what i'm hearing, I have to ask the passenger to fix it because I can't without risking my life and the lives of everyone on the road. and If there is no passenger? I have to wait for a red light, or at least a stop sign. I live in Kentucky. Do you know how often I drive on LOOOOOOOOOONG stretches of roads with NO STOPS? ALL THE F*CKING TIME.


Nobody needed to reinvent the f*cking wheel! Touch screens aren't some be-all end-all technological improvement that makes our lives better. Just give me a f*cking radio that doesn't put me in mortal danger!


Image by Foundry Co from Pixabay

Now that college has become a standard requirement for so many jobs and careers, there is a massive push by high schools to get their graduating students accepted and enrolled at an undergraduate college.

On the whole, that's undoubtedly a great thing. A more educated workforce will be prepared to solve the most complex issues facing human beings in the next several decades.

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Image by Gianni Crestani from Pixabay

*The following article contains discussion of suicide/self-harm.

The person on the other end of a 911 call has a truly remarkable job.

For those who don't play that professional role, we hope to never encounter the 911 call interaction. But if we do find ourselves making that call, the moment is an anomaly in our lives.

The chaos, the panic, the racing heart, and the desperation are all emotions we, ideally, don't experience on a regular basis.

But for the operator on the other end, our call is one in a long line of calls they've received all day, and all the workdays before that one.

It's difficult to imagine being embedded in those uniquely urgent, emergency moments all the time.

Some Redditors who are on the other end of that call shared their experiences on the job.

WhimsicalxxButcher asked, "911 dispatchers what has been your most creepy/unnerving call?"

For a few, the most unnerving moments were the calm callers.

There was something just so eerie about how level-headed the faceless human being on the other end could be through such a desperate, tragic moment.

Almost Clinical 

"I had a friend who worked as a 911 dispatcher and he always said the worst call he ever had was a ~20 year old kid who committed suicide by mixing a bunch of chemicals together in his car to produce hydrogen sulfide gas."

"He said that the most unnerving part was hearing him calmly listing off the chemicals, the type of gas produced, and the effects of hydrogen sulfide on the body (namely the almost instant death it causes at high concentrations)."

"He ended the call by providing the address of the parking lot he was in and saying that nobody should approach the vehicle without hazmat equipment."

"Apparently after that there was a whooshing sound as he dumped the last chemical into the mix, and then the line went dead silent aside for a quiet fizzing noise."

"I know that call screwed him up because he almost never talks about stuff that happens to him on the job. He quit a few months later to go into construction management, and frankly I can't blame him."

-- iunoyou

Planned Out 

"A woman called me, saying she was going to kill herself. She was gassing herself. Gave me her name & address then said she was just going to lie down and 'go to sleep.' And stopped responding to me."

"I kept the line open, trying to get her to speak to me, and eventually heard officers forcing their way in to find her body. I guess she just wanted someone to find her body."

-- mozgw4

Before It Set In 

"When I got a call from a 6 year old who got home from school and laid down to take a nap with his dad. His dad never woke up."

"The kid was so calm when calling it broke my heart."

"I ended up leaving dispatch shortly after. I was good at compartmentalizing the job for the year I was doing it, but it would've broken me in the long run."

-- tasha7712

Other 911 operators were unfortunate enough to receive a call from the very last person they wanted to hear from: a loved one.

These dispatchers' unique position gave them the unexpected access to a family member or friend at their most dire moments.

No More of That 

"My family member is a long time first responder, and 'retired' into doing dispatch. He heard the address (someone else was taking the call) and realized it was his daughter's house."

"He rushed over there just in time to see them wheeling her body out. Overdose."

"Five months later, he was called to his ex-wife's place because his grandson (son of the daughter who recently passed) had his door locked, lights on, but wasn't responding to his grandma."

"He broke the door down and found him deceased in bed. Overdose."

"He's very stoic after years of all sorts of traumatic situations but my heart hurts whenever I think of what all of this must have felt like. Like sand through your fingers."

-- bitchyhouseplant

Knowing the Address

"Not me, but my grandma. I was sitting in the dispatch office, (very small one only 2 dispatchers including my grandma) but she put out a dispatch that there was a gun shot from my best friends address."

"My heart sank to my stomach and broke later that day. He committed suicide."

-- OntaiSenpuu

When it Happened 

"My uncle passing away. Worked as a small town dispatcher for a year or so. Had a bunch of messed up stuff happen on shift, but this call came in in the still hours of the night. Small town, so not many calls after midnight."

"I answered and recognized the name and address on caller id. Aunt was in a frenzy so didn't recognize my voice. I remained calm and got ems and fire rolling to them, but by my aunt's own words he was already blue."

"I went thru debriefing and mandated therapy for a couple other things that happened, but never really talked to anyone about this. I just try not to think about it."

"That was the call I figured out I needed to find a different job."

-- dangitjon

Finally, some simply had a front row seat to sudden tragedy.

These operators were flies on the wall when disaster struck. They never asked to witness what they witnessed, but sometimes that came with the territory.

A Holiday Tragedy 

"My mom is a 911 dispatcher. Early on she said one Christmas Eve while working she got a call from an elderly lady who's husband had just collapsed(and died) from a heart attack and in the background Alvin and the Chipmunks Christmas music was playing on blast."

"The lady was screaming and crying and begging for her husband to wake up but my mom could hear his gurgling in his last breathes. She doesn't listen to or watch Alvin and the chipmunks since."

-- Blueflowerbluehair

What is it About Christmas?

"Christmas night. 911 call with crying child on the other end. A neighbor had run her car over her mom during a domestic."

"The mom crawled to the porch bleeding and the child saw the car coming back. I had her hide quietly in a closet with the cordless phone."

"The 10 year old child was crying and screamed that she hated Christmas. She was afraid of the police when they got there."

"I kept her on the phone until she felt safe enough to give the phone to an officer. I almost fainted after that call was over. Had nightmares for a while."

-- 2FunBoofer

Close to Home 

"Not a dispatcher but I handle radio communications for the Coast Guard. One night I was on the radio and got a call from an 11 year old kid whose boat had started to sink. He was out with his dad and 6 year old brother."

"They had been hit by another boat and his father got knocked unconscious. I remember the entire conversation up until the radio had gone underwater."

"They ended up finding his dad floating on his back alive but the two boys didn't make it. That one really fu**ed with me because my two littlest brothers were around the same age as the youngest."

-- HIRSH2243

A Horrible Clock 

"Another one that stays with me was the man who called in. It was the anniversary of his adult son having hanged himself. He'd now come home to find his wife had done the same."

"That date is always going to be a black day for him."

-- mozgw4

If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at

Again, we hope you never have to use the 911 call in your life. Nobody wants to be involved in a sudden emergency or a tragic incident.

But hopefully, if you do, an operator like one of these thoughtful, sensitive Redditors is on the other end.

Image by Nguyen Dinh Lich from Pixabay

When I was moving on from middle school to high school my parents had me tested for the "gifted" program. By some miracle I passed and was accepted. And then I turned it down. Everyone was irritated. "This will pave the way for any college you want! You'll learn so much!" his path will set you up for life!" Every adult tried valiantly to sell me this merchandise but in my gut I just wasn't buying it. So I "settled" a level below, merely advanced classes. And upon reflection... it was the best choice I ever made.

Redditor u/dauntlessdaisy was wondering how far some in life got by asking... For those of you who were considered "gifted" in school, what are you doing with your life now?
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Image by Markus Spiske from Pixabay

There's a million things that can happen to you while out on on the road.

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