After the REACT police task force (for which Apple is an advisor) decided to raid the home of a Gizmodo journalist over the iPhone 4G scoop, Jon Stewart had this to say:
Apple – you guys were the rebels, man, the underdogs. People believed in you. But now, are you becoming the man? Remember back in 1984, you had those awesome ads about overthrowing Big Brother? Look in the mirror, man!
It wasn’t supposed to be this way – Microsoft was supposed to be the evil one! But you guys are busting down doors in Palo Alto while Commandant Gates is ridding the world of mosquitoes!
Yes, Apple is reporting the phone as stolen, but the finder did contact them via a support request to attempt to return it (Apple did not respond) and Gizmodo did return the phone as soon as Apple requested it back. Maybe Gizmodo did cross a line, but Apple sure looks like Big Evil, Inc. rather than the scrappy underdog. I really like Apple products, but I’m also really disappointed in this heavy-handed corporate giant behavior. I think this kind of thing really offends the group of people I call “alpha geeks”, and alpha geeks are important to consumer tech companies as they tend to be the “computer guy” (or girl) for their families, friends and coworkers. So… the behavior is not only a bit repulsive, it may be a stupid move from a corporate point of view as well.