Steven Jobs filed for a name change the other day, if not officially, at least in the eyes and minds of many.
It’s not Steven Jobs or Steve Jobs, any more, it’s Little Stevie Jobs, just like Little Stevie Wonder.
Then again, Little Stevie Wonder was 12 when he got that title, and grew out of it by the time he was 14.
Little Stevie Jobs is 50.
Why the name change? Well, as this report explains, somebody wrote an unauthorized biography of the man. They sent an advance copy to Little Stevie’s minions. Apparently, since the book treats Little Stevie as merely human, Cupertino cringed, and immediately tried to prevent the book from being published. The publisher no doubt reminded Apple that this is America, not North Korea and said after hearing whatever objections Apple presented, they were going to publish.
So what did Apple do? It has pulled all books from that publisher from Apple Store shelves, most of them technical books written by completely innocent bystanders.
It’s hard to see how this isn’t a Little Stevie snit-fit.
Kim Jobs Il?
Or perhaps there is really is something of North Korea in all this. See the leader worship. See the strident, silly claims of superiority made regardless of reality. There are differences, of course, but more than a few similarities.
It is hardly original to call Macdom a cult, but this little incident might prove to be a true test of what proportion of Macsters are really MacMoonies. One sure sign of a cult is blind adherence to the leader. Let’s see how many MacAnts run to the front lines.
A Real Test For Macdom
It’s hardly unfair to say that a major reason Macsters are Macsters is because Macs and Macdom, one way or another, make them feel better about themselves. At the extremes, it becomes a secular religion, more often, just an indicator of better, superior and/or more discerning taste or judgment.
Nor is it unfair to say that Apple does much to foster such feelings among Macsters, feelings of superior community.
However, there are different kinds of communities. There’s the kind of community where leaders make decisions in the best interest of the followers. Then there is the Kim Jong Il model, where the ants do what they’re told, and obligations are a one-way street.
Which kind of community is Macdom?
It’s very hard to reconcile being part of an enlightened elite while also being a brainless ant in Little Stevie’s MacArmy waiting for orders.
It’s very hard to reconcile being part of an enlightened elite while also acquiescing in an act of book bigotry.
Understand what is going on here. Books are being banned not because of what’s in them, but because of their origins.
Let me put it this way, if Jesse Jackson gave a speech condemning Apple, and Apple banned all American blacks from coming into Apple Stores until he apologized, what would you call that?
I’m not exactly sure what the best name for this is, but whatever term it is, it surely ends with an -ist.
We do not know the merits or demerits of this book yet. If it is a libelous book, that’s what libel laws are for. True, it’s hard when you’re a public figure to win a libel case in America, but not impossible, but Little Stevie and Company is certainly quite capable of getting his side of the story out in public view, libel case or not.
If Apple doesn’t wish to stock this particular book, so be it. It’s hardly going to give you tips on how to use MacOS X or Mac programs better.
However, banning books that do tell you how to use MacOS X or Mac programs better does objectively hurt Macsters. You cannot possibly say such a ban is in the interest of Mac users.
Subjectively, Little Stevie’s spite makes Macsters look bad, and that’s not good for Apple.
A Word of Advice
If Macsters want to gain rather than lose credibility in the big world outside the Macghetto, they ought to start screaming bloody murder about this banning of innocent books. They ought not defend that one tiny little bit. They should not make excuses or apologize at all, because that’s pretty close to those poor North Koreans apologizing and justifying Mr. Kim.
Childish behavior never gets better when coddled, and that’s all this is. Macsters need to tell Little Stevie to grow up, for their own sakes. Find out if Apple is really a community, or “It’s all about Stevie.”
If you can’t gainsay your guru when he does something wrong, what does that say about you?