The guy at the Mac store said that my Macbook Pro, purchased in 2007, has done pretty well to last this long.
I said – “Well, the hardware’s fine. It’s the built-in software obsolescence that’s forcing me to upgrade, against my will, to your latest operating system; an operating system which offers no further functionality than a few confusing toys which claim to make my life easier. (As if that wasn’t solved centuries ago with the advent of the pen, diary and pocket watch. Or a good hammer.) I find it interesting that a simple DVD containing that operating system, which probably cost little more than your name tag and accompanying set of business cards, ‘John’, is not available in the country’s leading Mac Store, conveniently, and ironically, located directly opposite the country’s central post-office.
I find that interesting because, for a company which deals in the delivery of data, and one which has a reputation for ulterior motives lurking below its impossibly clean image, it’s fairly apparent that by choosing not to stock the latest operating system on-disk, in store, you are forcing customers (users? the faithful? clients?) to purchase online, thereby utilising your ‘free delivery’ service, and accept hefty packing (along with the cost thereof) for a product which literally requires none.
In other words, you’re forcing me, someone who recently, in the scheme of things, spent the equivalent of a years wages in the country where the rare-earth metals which go into your hardware are mined, to adopt a delivery system which is absolutely, entirely superfluous – forcing me to pay for the delivery of a DVD to my door, when your company is a world leader in the field of doing the exact opposite, data to the person? And more-so, asking me to buy into the idea that this delivery is ‘free’?
To re-hash, you, the grossly under-paid representative of a giant corporation known for its ability to tap into the wallets of its followers via their urge to follow your every, superfluous update (hardware or otherwise), expect me to believe that my computer simply must have the new operating system you are paid to sell – that it simply can’t operate without it? (despite having been fine doing so before your marketing department decided that this was a bad idea.) And that the one and only form of delivery, via snail mail, is somehow designed to provide security, and not simply bump up your company’s profits?
Well I find that insulting, unethical, and bordering on criminal. I find it demeaning, condescending, mean, shrivelled, Scrooge-like, misleading, cruel, stupid, small-minded and dumb.
I find it sad, poor, un-Australian, sub-human and smelly. It’s behaviour I would expect of a villain. It’s sub species. It’s wrong. It’s against what our grandparents, and theirs before them, fought for – ironically, at the encouragement of their governments at the time, using methods which pre-date those of the company you represent; mind games and deception.
And most of all, I find it disappointing, John. I had hoped you could do a lot better. I’d hoped you and I could be friends; that together we could fight the Apples of the world, instead of joining them. That we could undermine corporate greed, share the wealth, and be a part of something better, not worse, than what came before. I thought we could spend our days solving the world’s problems, helping those suppressed by the very corporations you have chosen to work for, who knowingly devise ways to squeeze every cent from its customers ever-lightened pockets, while they try harder and harder to deliver less and less.
I’d hoped you and I, John, could have been mates…fighting the good fight against the unethical standards set by increasingly mediated governments, whose short sighted decisions, and actions, serve few besides the shareholders of the companies you and they represent. I’d hoped we could protect forests, save oceans and free millions from servitude. Feed the world’s hungry, educate the misguided, offer forgiveness to those who did wrong, and watch as common sense becomes the new black. Or in your case – black, white or gold.
Instead, you’ve donned the shirt, and on our very first meeting, you lied to me. To my face, John. Right to my face.
So no, I will not buy your operating system. I will not be forced to play the game your employer pays you to sell, thereby contributing my chip to the demise of the planet.
Instead, I will steal the OS. Since I simply must have it, you leave me no choice. And if it doesn’t work, I’ll head down to the local computer guy, and pay him cash-money to fix it, which is how things should be done.