Is Apple under attack from a whisper campaign?

“With the political super-season gearing up, come accusations of ‘whisper campaigns,’ or the spreading of false, damaging rumors from unknown sources. Based on a casual comment from an acquaintance, Apple might be under the same type of attack,” David Morgenstern blogs for ZDNet.

“The other day, I happened to be talking to an executive at a technology company who fits this profile. He’s never owned a Mac and for all that I know, never even used one. He may not use an iPod! His company doesn’t support Apple hardware and never will. He bleeds Windows. He knows about my Mac connection and in the course of our conversation, I mentioned that I had seen the new MacBook Air and how impressed I was with it,” Morgenstern writes. “He then asked me about something he had heard about Apple. The gist was that while Apple products had great design, they were of poor quality. In other words, Apple makes products that look good, but break easily or don’t hold their value.”

Morgenstern writes, “This was a very strange comment, so odd that it took me aback for a moment. Mac owners know, as well as those who have considered purchasing a Mac, that Apple has a topnotch reputation for industrial design and reliability. Consumer Reports and other media outlets mention this fact on a yearly basis.”

MacDailyNews Note: Please see related articles:
ChangeWave: Apple’s iPhone races to huge lead in customer satisfaction – October 18, 2007
Apple Mac desktops, notebooks top PC Magazine’s Annual Reader Satisfaction survey – again – September 18, 2007
Survey: Apple iPhone nabs unprecedented 92% satisfaction rating (plus likes and dislikes) – August 16, 2007
Apple again tops the field in LAPTOP Magazine’s ‘Tech Support Showdown 2007’ – June 19, 2007
Apple again leads Consumer Reports’ survey for notebook, desktop computer tech support, value, more – October 16, 2006
Apple Mac desktops, notebooks top PC Magazine’s Annual Reader Satisfaction survey – again – August 22, 2006
Apple far outscores all other PC makers in Consumer Reports Computer Tech Support Survey – May 05, 2006
Apple Mac desktops, portables top PC Magazine’s 2005 Reader Satisfaction survey – August 24, 2005
Apple Computer products top PC Magazine’s annual ‘Best of the Year’ survey – December 16, 2004
Apple Macs top PC Magazine’s ’17th Annual Reader Satisfaction Survey’ – August 10, 2004
Apple leads PC Magazine’s 16th annual Service and Reliability Survey – July 10, 2003

Morgenstern continues, “This isn’t to say that Apple doesn’t have its design problems and QA mishaps, such as flaming notebooks, defective hardware and poor production runs. Or problem software releases. Yet, while customers have screamed at times, for the most part, the company’s been able to overcome QA issues.”

“So, where did this notion of Apple’s lack of quality come from. My buddy said he “heard” from someone. He didn’t make it up,” Morgenstern continues. “Being so false, it has the ring of a rumor campaign to me. The best candidate to receive the rumor would be someone who hasn’t used a Mac client machine. I can see how it may spread in in enterprise IT departments or within companies receiving pitches for technology adoptions where switchers are starting to be seen.”

More in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “R” for the heads up.]

50 Comments

  1. Nah, it’s business as usual. Bad news travels quickly and, even though these people may be speaking poorly of Apple, any ad person would agree that it’s better to be talked about than NOT to be talked about.

    The difference between now and 10 years ago is that if you said something about Apple, the response would likely have been “They’re still in business?” or a blank stare.

  2. “kids already know about them”

    And the amazing thing about kids is, one day, they’ll become adults… even some of them will become parents!! People generally stick with what they know, so all you have to do is keep hooking the kids, and the “oldsters” will already be yours when they get there!

    Works for the tobacco industry and they have nary an ad on tv! ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smile” style=”border:0;” />

    And as always, this should be followed by: How, exactly, do you show anything that OSX can do that Windows can’t do just as well in 30 seconds? An infomercial, maybe, but those are just plain creepy…

  3. This isn’t a campaign. It’s a fact of life with Apple.
    Many of the comments here already explain why this happens, and it seems to boil down to the Windows Stockholm Syndrome. I am constantly hearing from Windows-suffering friends about how there is finally a virus for my Mac, or how they’ve “heard” that Macs are super-expensive style without substance, or there’s no software, or fill-in-the-blank.
    The sign that the tide has turned is that I no longer proselytise or argue, because I know that the upswing is well underway and I don’t need to be an unofficial Apple salesperson in order to save the company. My friends are inquiring about Macs. My friends’ moms are getting Macs. Everyone’s “next computer is a Mac”. Watch for the FUD to really hit the fan.

  4. Let me address this issue. Apple makes crap. I’ve never used a MAC but I know their gear is junk. Don’t ask me how I know. Let’s just say I know and leave it at that. I’ll leave rumor and conjecture to the MAC sheep. What I speak of are facts.

    Windows and WMA player enthusiasts don’t need to belittle or feel threatened by tiny Apple and their 2.5% market share to the point that these upstanding real-world technology users would spread lies. The quality of an Acer computer or RCA digital music player speak for themselves. Apple should be embarrassed to put their I-Pods next to an RCA Pearl on a store shelf.

    You see, I talk to the IT guys at work quite regularly. They have Microsoft certifications and do a lot of research. They know what’s quality and what isn’t. They’re in the trenches every day. You don’t see MACs in the enterprise because supporting their shoddy hardware would be astronomical in cost. Don’t get me started on support costs for MAC’s toy OS either.

    Your potential. Our passion.™

  5. “I know that the upswing is well underway and I don’t need to be an unofficial Apple salesperson in order to save the company.”
    And in some cases, Apple USES this effect to their advantage…

    So, yeah, a lot of people knew about the iPhone after it was released. However, a short while later news SWEPT the country on all the major national news outlets, some local news, all the blogs and news websites crying foul play with the $200 price drop. They let it stew for a day, gathering even more steam as those who had no clue what an iPhone was got up to speed and added THEIR voice to the cacaphony. Then, the final stroke that made sure “iPhone” was the news item of the short otherwise newsless holiday week, Apple announces the $100 deal which, again, had to be repeated over and over by all the same people who carried the story earlier that week (some of whom claimed it was THEIR particularly scathing remarks that made Apple put their tail between their legs).

    The result? People who only marginally were aware that Apple and phone do actually belong in the same sentence knew what an iPhone was AND knew what the price was.

    Genius

  6. There is something to be said for years of Apple bashing. There are people out there who I work with that say that nothing Apple makes will ever be good and it will always be crap.

    And these people have NEVER owned an Apple product in their life.

    IT’s a terminal case of head up ass. The IT industry is suffering for it.

  7. Apple makes products that look good, but break easily or don’t hold their value

    As a longtime Apple customer I can tell you this.

    1: On the OS and security side, Apple is top notch. More secure in the past than recently with OS X. But boatloads better than anything Microsoft produced. This is a big savings in time and labor.

    2: On the hardware side; well Apple innovates and with that comes risks in reliability because new methods and hardware is used. Since Apple doesn’t make their own processors or other hardware components, they have to rely upon the quality of third party companies.

    In fact the word in Apple buyers circles is (unless your a willing to be a early adopter) not to buy a first issue Apple product. Because new hardware has new unforseen risks and feature requests that a hardware revision can fix.

    It is in Apple’s interests not to have returns or repairs for defective devices so they do try very hard to maintain a higher level of quality.

    Also is the fact that Apple refuses to participate in the bargin basement arena of computer sales, where shoddy crap sneaks in because of low price bids.

    On the other hand I think Apple could do a LOT more to bring the quality of their hardware up for the insane prices we all pay.

    It’s like Apple started going very cheap lately and then increasing prices/margins, especially the glossy screens, USB only computers and things like that. It’s been a steady decline in features to the point that Apple is looking like it’s going after Dell a bit too much.

    For instance, why not have iPods with combined Firewire AND USB ports? This way Mac users can use the speed of Firewire to load up their iPods?

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