35 Of The Worst Inventions That We All Wish We Could Undo

Published 2 months ago

In today’s rapidly evolving world, innovation stands as a powerful force shaping our reality. Yet, amidst the plethora of advancements, not every invention yields purely positive outcomes. This nuanced truth prompted members of the ‘Ask Reddit‘ community to ponder what they would “dis-invent” if given the opportunity.

From cigarettes to social media, the responses spanned a wide spectrum, offering intriguing insights into the complexities of modern life. Scroll down to explore these perspectives and contemplate how certain inventions might have steered our world in less desirable directions.

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#1 Influencers.

Image source: satanscough_, Ivan Samkov / pexels

#2 The tipping option when I check out on those computers at the checkout counter.

Image source: PotatoshavePockets, Furry-atack / reddit


Maybe tips in general. Just pay people for the work they do.

#3 Glitter. I seriously consider it to be the worst human invention.

Image source: Wayard_1, cottonbro studio / pexels

#4 Landmines. Seriously. They f**k up people long after wars are finished.

Image source: NaughtyDaisyDelight, HH58 / Wikipedia


There’s an estimated 800,000 TONS of unexploded ordnance still in Vietnam, that would take hundreds of years to clear out. For context, the bomb dropped in Hiroshima had a yield of about 15,000 tons of TNT.

#5 Social media.

Image source: Sarcastic_Fridge, Tracy Le Blanc / pexels


This! It was innocent in the MySpace days. Then Facebook came along and everything after that ruined it. I don’t see anything good that has come of it. Nothing but toxicity, hate, division and arguing.

#6 The packages they put scissors in… that you need scissor to open. Wtf?

Image source: AnxiousTelephone2997, osseous / flickr

#7 Pyramid schemes

Image source: Mandrake_m2, Rene Asmussen / pexels

#8 Child Beauty Pageants. They just seem really toxic and creepy.

Image source: evilprozac79, TLC UK

#9 Those nearly-blinding, unnecessarily bright car head lamps.

Image source: anonicrow, Ali Alcántara

#10 Planned obsolescence.

Image source: w0rlds, cottonbro studio / pexels


Here’s my go to planned obsolescence example. My mom bought her first microwave in 1984. It’s traveled to 3 houses and still works perfect. She redid her kitchen and got all new appliances EXCEPT for a microwave. I have lived out of the house for 23 years and have had at least 7 microwaves. They keep cr*pping out and I buy a new one. That is planned obsolescence in a nutshell.

#11 That dumb paper sticker that gets put on stuff that is IMPOSSIBLE to remove cleanly.

Image source: BlankWallSpace, WikiHow

#12 TikTok.

Image source: PurpDoesPixilart, cottonbro studio / pexels

#13 Vapes. Tossed mine in the trash an hour ago, though.

Image source: whatataco, Lindsay Fox / flickr

#14 Corporate personhood.

Image source: LordPenvelton

#15 Pop-up ads.

Image source: AviatorShades_, Pascale PirateChickan / flickr


The creator of them even apologized for creating them.

#16 Spam calls, robo calls, phishing emails.

Image source: Hungry-panda23, Karolina Grabowska / pexels

#17 Our two-tiered justice system; One for the wealthy and politically connected, and one for the rest of us.

Image source: Daflehrer1, Sora Shimazaki / pexels

#18 The concept of lobbying.

Image source: Phyose, Sora Shimazaki / pexels

#19 Nuclear bomb probably. Let’s put that back in Pandora’s box.

Image source: Anonymous_katniss, Federal government of the United States / Wikipedia

#20 Household appliances that are tied to subscription services.

Image source: TheJH2M, tomemrich / flickr

#21 A lot of inventions mentioned here that have had positive outcomes alongside of negative ones. HOA’s however may look good on paper, but hath wrought no good to this world.

Image source: Dreambourne

#22 Mandatory cookies to view websites.

Image source: Mandrake_m2, BBC

#23 Cars with screens on the dash. Give me back my buttons and dials goddamn it!!

Image source: bri_2498, Jeremy Buckingham / flickr

#24 Slavery.

Image source: RainbowsandCoffee966, 60 minutes

#25 Cigarettes.

Image source: SageOfShadows54, Revival Vape / flickr

#26 Organized religion.

Image source: JayKay11, Woody Hibbard / flickr

#27 CAPTCHA. That’s not a motorcycle, that’s a moped. And I still don’t think the rider should count as part of the motorcycle.

Image source: themightyfoxtwo

#28 Certain dog breeds, like all the brachycephalic (flat-nosed dogs such as frenchies and bull dogs).

Image source: tnderosa, Creative Workshop / pexels

#29 Coffee Pods – they are disgustingly wasteful.

Image source: Anim8nFool, Karsten Seiferlin / flickr

#30 The medical insurance industry.

Image source: PizzaPastaRigatoni, Pixabay / pexels


The problem with modern insurance is that it’s been completely corrupted with the drive for profit. In a pure form insurance has the potential to be incredibly beneficial to the people who use it, but the profit incentive causes companies to use every trick and loophole in the book to not give out what is owed.

#31 Subscription services. Either let me try it for free then buy it full Price or let me rent it and charge me only for the amount of time I used it for.

Image source: SwiftlyIntrestedFr, Anete Lusina / pexels

Of course, it doesn’t apply to everything. Subscriptions make sense for something like Apple Music, Xbox Game Pass or Costco, but I don’t want to have to pay Adobe 60 dollars a month for Photoshop when I could just rent a license. You don’t subscribe to a car, you just rent it for how many days you need it for.

#32 Phones and computers in which you can’t easily replace the battery.

Image source: MostlySpiders, Fairphone / flickr

#33 Patents for Insulin.

Image source: ApartmentCapital8880, Mikhail Nilov / pexels


I’d say medicinal patents In general, let the prices fall, and the diabetics rejoice.

#34 The ad-based internet.

Image source: mohirl, BoredPanda

#35 AI.

Image source: MooPixelArt, Djordje Petrovic / pexels


AI for practical purposes like medicine is great. But generative AI in the way we’re mostly seeing it applied has the dual effect of putting us in an information dark age by making anything able to be fabricated, while also ruining industries based on art. Hands down my choice for what needs to be disinvented.

Shanilou Perera

Shanilou has always loved reading and learning about the world we live in. While she enjoys fictional books and stories just as much, since childhood she was especially fascinated by encyclopaedias and strangely enough, self-help books. As a kid, she spent most of her time consuming as much knowledge as she could get her hands on and could always be found at the library. Now, she still enjoys finding out about all the amazing things that surround us in our day-to-day lives and is blessed to be able to write about them to share with the whole world as a profession.

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