Ah, my charming correspondents of the Apple variety

So you write a piece at The Register, and what do you know? You get people who don’t want just to shoot the messenger, but stamp on his hat afterwards too.

Here, plucked from my mailbag, is Very Angry Person email #1. (Note: all that follows is the same guy. I’d like to think there couldn’t be more than one who’s quite this bonkers. Or at least, who is allowed to use sharp things like keyboards.)

Dear Author or Arthur,
You pay $200 for a device most people treat it like gold and get a nice little case for it. For the ham-handed bungling crowd perhaps they should stick to the cassette player, or whistle. iPods are not for everyone obviously some have fallen into the hands of the wrong type of people.
If it is a defect then they just won the lottery. It’s value as a collectors item in 20 years will make it well worth the investment.
Even Apples garbage has great value :0-)
Interesting quote from Mr Rubenstien Where did you get that?
When the point was put to the head of Apple’s iPod division, Jon Rubenstein – who in the past oversaw the development of the Titanium PowerBook – the one that killed off Wi-Fi reception, because metal cages do that – he replied: “Nah, you don’t really think that? It’s made of the hardest polycarbonate… You keep it in a pocket with your keys?”
I would guess that Jon might need to get his resume in order; if he is as pathetic as this quote demonstrates.
You forget to ad in the positive ie %70 of the market, a brand name stronger and more profitable than NIKE, #1 consumer of flash memory. mastery of the digital music universe.
If I was a professional writer I would be careful what I write. Advertising pays your measly pay check and in the google age big brother can analyze whether they like you or not in less then a half a second. Oh and all those readers who love you…. the will forsake you in moment! Thats if they even remember your name.
Good Luck In The Future, AKA Charles Arthur your style is no mystery to the machine that can ID you in less time than it takes you to draw a breath.

I replied politely enough, pointing out that among other things he was wrong about Nike – its most recent quarterly profits were $423m (here) vs Apple’s most recently reported quarterly profits, best-ever quarter: $320m (here). Even Nike’s quarterly profits a year ago were better than Apple’s most recent ones. So not more profitable than Nike.

Of course, this was the wrong answer. Email #2 is mostly quotage of my reply, though it had these gems:

re Nike 1. Market % and profit are 2 different things.
2. Profitable is refering to the per unit profit margin on an iPod not the companies as a whole.


Google you! Ha thats a joke, what’s that link suppose to tell me?
that there are a bunch of no count schmucks with your name, or that you have a stellar resume neither of witch I care about.

and also

And Why Would I ever want to read a Blog from a filter. Aren’t Blogs for amateurs who can’t get real jobs in journalism. Although the US Army Blogs are very good.
So when does the great novel or play your writing come out? I’ll tell you. Never you suck, go get a job sweeping chimneys. D*psh(t.

I was really starting to enjoy this now, but had other things to do – like write a third story on the iPod nano screen. Ooh, incoming email at The Register…

Oh will your horse shi^ ever end.
While Apple has moved much more quickly than usual to avert what could have
(and still might yet) become a PR disaster

Oh BS only if you friggen English clowns had an audience!
the problem does illustrate the danger of changing horses in midstream – in this case, dumping the iPod Mini, which was the world’s best-selling
digital music player, to replace it with something new. The Mini wasn’t
broke, but Steve Jobs was clearly worried that rivals could catch up, and
went for a coup by cornering the world’s Flash memory market and developing
the product at top speed.

It’s probably been sitting in the black building for nearly 6 years. “Top
Speed” watch kind of monkey term is that.
Expect him [Jobs] to receive a grilling, of sorts,
So your a regular at the shareholders meetings?
over the cost of this when Apple reports its Q4 results next month. The
current quarter ends in three days. The incident might become a business-school textbook case of how
manufacturing can mess you up.

Drugs can mess you up. Being an English peter puffer can mess you up.
The line “case of how manufacturing can mess you up.” WTF does that mean. To make it into a textbook which won’t happen except in your dim imagination, it would have to be something of consequence. This is no more than a tiny pimple on an elephants ass.
Where have you been for the last twenty years?
I can’t remember how many computer makers and OS makers are there in the UK?
The number 0 comes to mind. Actually what do you english produce except crappy music? Manufacturing, I thought you guys quit that business after your empire fell apart and they outlawed child labor?
What happened to the other Apple writer? He was a moron too but at least he
had an excuse.

Having restitched my sides, I sent him an email pointing out that those who think it’s big to insult people as being “gay” are often afraid of something within themselves, and this makes them angry and unhappy. (This guy – it’s obvious it’s a guy, yes? – isn’t a teenager; he’s actually in his late 30s or more, judging by the pictures in his online photo album. No, I’m not going to link there. It’d be cruel.)


In america 10 year olds use that concept for a number of concepts ie The fart concept. He who smelt it dealt it.
Thats week all that ripping and this is your only return line. Hell we used that one up back in grade school in the 1970’s.
You are a plug in the drain and as far as creativity your on par with the average American 10 year old.
You worthless maggot, you filthy pitiful peace of sh&t.
Your probably the type of man ….. ( you’ll have to rent the movie.)
PS: GFY peruvian snowcone loving drip of cr&p.
If your gonna send me a zinger at least make it worth the time.
This whole e-mail was about as week as the story you “BROKE.” Don’t ever use negative terms and Apple computer in the same
sentence. Or your computer will shock you in your mind like a lab monkey!
I still think you outta be sweeping chimney’s!

You get the pattern – he’s after attention, but I just wouldn’t insult him back, which just drove him into a frenzy. So, I asked, what was he so angry about? Final email (though I know it’s been fun..):

I’m angry at you for attacking the only light in the persona computer world.
Apple keeps the world of personal computing from falling into a dark, dark, abyss, of stagnate decay.
So it’s not nice to take unfair potshots at the people that make the world’s most advanced, most fun, most innovative personal computer.
If there was no Apple the world would turn into stagnate hole of mediocrity.
Kind of like you and your writing skills.
Total and complete grey crap!

Awww. Isn’t that nice? It’s so encouraging to have someone whose true mission in life is to spread the Apple gospel. And if we have to destroy the town to save it…

(Thinks. Hmm. The Triforce are gonna love this. A whole new excursion into vocabulary..)


  1. Sitting here now, iPod Shuffle in my pocket and PowerBook on the desk, I feel a bit creepy. I like Apple. So does this guy. So I have some stuff in common with him. Yipes.

  2. He doesn’t just like Apple – I think he probably stalks SJ…

  3. Odd, sorry you have to go through that. I’ve noticed most iPods are pretty scratcheable, but this one looks more than usual. I don’t think comparing nano to a cube is useful, though, because the main issue keeping people from buying the cube was it’s high price, not the cracks. The mini mac is basically a smaller cube and quite popular.

    OTOH, apple fans have had to put up with journalists with little tech experience for so many years who a) predicat any apple product won’t sell and then b) jump on any negative reporting of apple with glee, so it becomes this weird religious war-of-memes.

  4. Funny how he critizies you for your writing skills when he have problems with separating “week” from “weak”… Ah well.

  5. As a former editor of MacUser, I can tell you that the vast majority of Mac users are sane, nice people who like their Macs and don’t go psycho when Apple is criticised. However, there really is a lunatic fringe of AppleNuts who are exactly like the guy you encountered here. And it very much is *Apple* nuts, rather than MacZealots – these people will cheer anything Apple does, to the rafters, no matter how crazy.

  6. Christian,
    please make sure your spelling/grammar is up to scratch when you correct others.

    1. critizies = criticise or criticize depending on where you hail from

    2. he ‘has’ problems, not have problems

    3. separating… etc


  7. Ok, I’ll bite:


    Woss wrong wivat? Oh.


  8. If you think that guy was bad, check out the MS fanboi trolls in comp.sys.mac.advocacy and comp.sys.linux.advocacy.

  9. I’m guessing that guys apple could be a little sticky.

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