John C. Dvorak expounds on pro-Mac, anti-Microsoft media bias

“As big and as important as Microsoft is, the coverage of the company is quite mediocre. This is particularly true in the mainstream press. The reason for this is that today’s newspaper and magazine tech writers know little about computers and are all Mac users. It’s a fact,” John C. Dvorak writes for PC Magazine.

Dvorak writes, “This is why when Microsoft actually does have a good idea, people look to trash it out of hand. With 90 percent of the mainstream writers being Mac users, what would you expect? The top columnists in the news and business magazines fit this model too. The technology writers fit this model. The tech writers and tech columnists for the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, and Fortune are all Mac users. I could list them by name, but I’d hate to leave one out. Maybe I’ll blog them by name. I could list 50. Readers should thus not be surprised by the overcoverage of Apple Computer. Every time Steve Jobs sneezes there is a collective chorus of ‘Gesundheit’ from tech writers pounding away on their Macs.”

“What’s bad for Microsoft is that the bias against it is subtle—kind of like any sort of media bias, whether religious or political. As one critic once said regarding the supposed left-wing slant of the daily news media, “It’s not what they write, it’s what they write ABOUT that matters.” Story selection. Microsoft can roll out a dozen cool products, and the media goes ga-ga over the video iPod—a rather late-to-market Apple product. They all swoon over the prospect of paying $2 to download an otherwise free TV show so they can have the privilege of watching it on a 2-inch screen… The newsroom editors are generally so out of touch that they can’t see this bias. Besides, they use Macs too. There are entire newsrooms, such as the one at Forbes, that consist entirely of Macintoshes. Apparently nobody but me finds this weird,” Dvorak writes. “I often confront these guys with this assertion, and they, to a man (I’ve never confronted a female reporter about this), all say that they use a Mac ‘because it is better.'”

“Probably the smartest thing Microsoft could ever have done was copy as much of the Mac OS as it could insofar as look and feel were concerned, since in the final analysis there were customers doing AB comparisons between the Mac and the PC—which kept the PC on the desktop. The PC was cheaper and seemed about the same functionally,” Dvorak writes.

Full article here.

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Holy Vingle! Okay, so according to Dvorak there’s an anti-Microsoft bias out there because 90% of the mainstream writers use Macs? Yes, Apple gets tremendous publicity, but did John ever think that’s because Apple actually leads, innovates, and pioneers while, conversely, “the smartest thing Microsoft could ever have done was copy as much of the Mac OS as it could?”

Microsoft is mediocre. Mediocrity doesn’t inspire coverage. It inspires nothing. Well, nothing positive, at least. What’s interesting about whatever Microsoft poorly copied from Apple today? It was more interesting to write about whatever it was when Apple introduced it years before. Hence, for one example, X amount of coverage of Microsoft Vista’s upcoming someday “Gadgets” compared to 10X coverage of Apple’s already available and in use Dashboard Widgets. Thomas Edison invented the light bulb. Ronnie Schmuckowitz of Parsippany, NJ claimed he “invented” it a week later. Edison got all the coverage. Damn biased media!

And, if Dvorak doesn’t see and hear the constant drone of subtle and not-so-subtle bias against Macintosh and Apple woven throughout the mainstream and tech media, he’s blind and deaf. The problem with Dvorak’s whole backwards little theory is that the truth gets in the way: the Mac platform actually is generally agreed upon to be much better than Windows and Apple is the innovator and while Microsoft is the follower.

For Dvorak’s crazy theory to actually work, Microsoft Windows XP would have to be better than Mac OS X Tiger and Apple would have to have a reputation for copying everything Microsoft has innovated or popularized over decades. See how crazy that sounds?


  1. 90% of Mainstream writers use Macs?

    Statistics can be made up on the spot – 76% of adults between the ages of 22-30 know this. See! Easy!

    He’s clutching at straws, Apple make cool products, people want to write about them, use them and recommend them. Who would want to recommend Microsoft when not even Bill Gates can get something as easy as a slideshow working on a ‘Media Center’ PC?

  2. this is the lamest thing I’ve ever heard.

    there are still more people who own analog TV then digital…should the media report on trends in old analog tvs or do people want to hear about what’s going on with HDTv and the GREAT NEW TECHNOLOGY.

    technology is about cutting edge…not dull followers.

  3. While I haven’t downloaded any videos yet, I expect the motive would not be the “privilege of watching it on a 2-inch screen” but rather the opportunity to watch it anytime, anywhere … or in some cases, to watch it at all (in the event that you missed the episode on TV, etc.). Is Dvorak biased?

  4. HMMMMMMMMMM… they are all using Macs he says… hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm… I just wonder why they would do that??? After all, they live in a PC world don’t they?

    He doesn’t get it… But he is GOING to get it, here at least ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />.

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