I know it’s old news, but on browsing a Register article about the fruity company’s new plans to scan iPhones for child pornography, I came across this article: Inside our three-month effort to attend Apple’s iPhone 7 launch party.
It’s well worth reading in full, if only to see how companies can twist words to avoid telling the truth.
This is the enduring takeaway.
“The truth though is that large tech companies, especially in Silicon Valley, often use access to their events and their executives as a way to force positive coverage of themselves. If you write one bad thing about them, they threaten to stop talking to you. If you ignore the warnings, they blacklist you.
Unsurprisingly, The Register is not all that flexible when it comes to tech companies trying to intimidate us into writing nothing but positive press coverage. The question you should be asking yourself is: does that mean that everyone who is invited to Apple’s events can be relied upon to self-censor any negative comments? (Quick clue: the answer’s yes.)”
Bear that quote in mind the next time you see somebody reporting on an Apple press conference.
From an article at the Register about Tim Cook and Apple‘s interactions with the media, comes this fascinating tidbit:
Apple’s control isn’t merely felt on its own TV platform, but also how it handles product placement. Kit provided to studios always comes with strings attached, according to Rian Johnson, who directed Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Knives Out.
Fictional bad guys, can’t, for example, use iPhones and MacBooks. During the run of espionage thriller 24, it became immediately apparent who was the antagonist, based on their computer of choice. If they used Windows, they were suspect.
Now you know. If they’re using Windows, they are likely to be baddies!
Youi can read the whole article here.
It’s not only taxes that Apple tries to avoid; they are not keen on criticism of their products either. One weapon in their corporate arsenal is controlling access to their launch events. Write something less than stellar, and you – and your organization – are unlikely to be invited back. That’s the conclusion of this Register piece by Kieren McCarthy – Inside our three-month effort to attend Apple’s iPhone 7 launch party – which shows you some of the shenanigans Apple got up to, instead of coming out and plainly admitting there is a media blacklist. Shame on Apple. However, if you don’t think it affects you, perhaps as an Apple consumer, think again. As the Register piece notes:
“Unsurprisingly, The Register is not all that flexible when it comes to tech companies trying to intimidate us into writing nothing but positive press coverage. The question you should be asking yourself is: does that mean that everyone who is invited to Apple’s events can be relied upon to self-censor any negative comments? (Quick clue: the answer’s yes.)“
You have been warned.
Tim Cook of Apple is not happy about the films being made about Steve Jobs and Apple. But, given the opportunity to turn back time, he might have expressed himself differently – or even avoided comment. For Aaron Sorkin has well and truly roasted Mr Cook, as the Register reports:
Academy Award-winning screenwriter Aaron Sorkin has issued a verbal blast to Apple CEO Tim Cook over his criticism of the forthcoming film biopic of dead Steve Jobs.
Earlier this month, Cook was interviewed by Stephen Colbert on The Late Show, and discussed the succession of films (and even an opera) that have been made about Jobs in the wake of his death. Cook declared that he hadn’t taken the time to watch any of them, and that he disapproved of them being made.
“I think that a lot of people are trying to be opportunistic, and I hate this; it’s not a great part of our world,” he told Colbert.
Cook’s comments were raised on Friday at a press conference to promote the forthcoming film Steve Jobs, in which Michael Fassbender portrays the late Apple cofounder in the early years of the company’s history. The film was written by Sorkin and, when asked about Cook’s comments, the writer didn’t hold back.
“Nobody did this movie to get rich,” Sorkin said, The Hollywood Reporter recounts.
“Secondly, Tim Cook should really see the movie before he decides what it is.
Third, if you’ve got a factory full of children in China assembling phones for 17 cents an hour, you’ve got a lot of nerve calling someone else opportunistic.“
You can read it all – including links to the Register‘s coverage of the child labor angle – here.
Most technology commentators believe the newly launched iPad mini is a move against Amazon’s Kindle Fire. Judging by this extract from Amazon.com’s home page, Amazon are going to meet the challenge head on:
The leading quote is from the Gizmodo site (unavailable just now because of Hurricane Sandy…) and adds salt to the wound of the direct comparison.
As this is an Amazon advert, it’s not exactly balanced. However, it will be interesting to see if Apple fight back using the strengths of their product or the power of their brand. In other words, will Apple be saying “Buy this, it’s a better piece of kit” or “Buy this, it’s an Apple”? The competition should be good for us consumers.
[A tip of the hat to the Register.]