The information age has brought about a new kind of yellow journalism; one epitomized by the likes of Forbes Magazine, but highly visible across the misinformation superhighway. Complaints. They’re everywhere and most of them are thoughtless considerations.
You see talking heads on cable TV news complaining about anything and everything. You see it online with comment sections and forum posts. Complaints are everywhere and no subject is taboo. Why so many complaints? Negativity Bias. Yes, it’s a thing.
Negativity bias shows up before and after every new Apple product release. First, the more valid rumors are criticized by members of the technorati elite politburo as too little, too late. Then, once a product is announced, nattering nabobs of negativism point out all the problems and why it won’t succeed.
Not every new Apple product or feature is affected, of course, but most are. Touch ID? Lame. Face ID? “My face is my password! That can’t be good!” As it turned out, yes it can be good because Apple did it the right way.
I’m not talking about a laundry list of software bugs that plague every new release or product. That’s the nature of the software industry and Apple’s record is no worse than any other tech powerhouse. Things go wrong. They get fixed. What I’m complaining about is the constant line of complaints and how they have become monetized.
Forbes Magazine, I’m looking at you. Complaining is easy work. It’s like listing hardware specifications between competing products and declaring a winner. Such comparisons are easy to create. Complaining about something is just as easy.
Let me do a few examples.
- iPhone XR – there is no evidence that customers will like those colors.
- iPhone XS Max – who wants a smartphone that costs more than a MacBook Pro?
- iPad Pro – it doesn’t work as well and isn’t as powerful as a Mac.
- Apple Watch – who can afford to upgrade to a new Watch every year?
- Apple Stores – they’re too crowded; nobody goes there anymore.
- Battery Life – 10 years into iPhone and it’s still just a single day.
- Innovation – Apple has lost its innovation mojo to (insert Samsung, Google, etc.).
I have a few complaints about Apple that are real and worthy of consideration. CEO Tim Cook complains about the data-industrial complex and how dangerous it is for personal privacy and humans in general because profit is not a good motive for such an exchange (privacy for free software). Yet, Apple takes a few billion dollars a year from Google to make the search engine giant the default on Safari.
Valid complaint, no?
Another? Why no Wi-Fi on CarPlay? See? Those complaints are valid. Complaining about a software bug or a price tag or how well or not a new product will do in the marketplace is cheap analysis. In fact, it’s not analysis at all, and that’s one thing that is lacking among members of the technology press these days. Insightful analysis.
Everyone complains but nobody does anything about it.