Who says Apple doesn’t listen? Who says it doesn’t change its mind? Who says it can learn to do the right thing?
Was it Gary? Dang it, Gary. We talked about this.
Despite the company’s reputation to the contrary, Apple changed course not once but twice in the last week. Meaning that it has fulfilled its changing-its-mind quota for the current 12 months. Do not look for Apple to change its mind again until November 2024.
Yes, surprising many last week, Apple announced out of the blue (bubble) that it would be implementing RCS messaging in Messages next year. Before you ask, RCS message bubbles will be green, just like SMS and MMS messages. Your dreams of a rainbow coalition of bubbles will have to wait for another day.
After whatever Faustian bargain Tim Cook struck in his meeting with Elon Musk a year ago, Apple had continued to advertise on Musk’s home for the criminally gross, having its ads placed next to fine products like monkey wax and disposable pants. Musk’s latest bon mots caused an outcry from many corners, including a brief email-writing campaign directed at Cook.
The Macalope is just going to say it: Elon Musk is a bad person. The horny one knows a lot of people really don’t want to believe that, but it’s true.
“But he does the space stuff! Maybe he’s just complicated.”
No, he’s not complicated. He’s just awful. Look, the Macalope loves space. It’s his second favorite place after Earth. But even Musk’s space business is quite bad!
Musk has not apologized for the comments that led advertisers to flee Twitter like rats leaving a sinking, antisemitic ship. He only haughtily assured everyone that he was not antisemitic.
See, he’s not antisemitic, he just happens to like and voice agreement with posts that are antisemitic. Okay? Understand now? So simple.
It is good that Apple changed its mind on these two issues. But let’s not clap the company on the back too hard. Or, really, at all.
Both of these course corrections came way later than they should have and only happened because of pressure. Upcoming EU legislation was likely what caused Apple to finally commit to RCS. RCS isn’t perfect, of course, but now that Apple’s on board, it says it’s going to work to have end-to-end encryption included in the standard. That’s a win for everyone.
It could have done that earlier.
Apple’s pullback from advertising on Musk’s playground for petulant incels only came after IBM pulled ads. When you’re beaten by the company that sold technology to the Nazis during World War II and then only call it a “pause” to advertising, you don’t really deserve a lot of accolades for finally doing the right thing. This stinks of putting a hold on ads until things blow over.
The Macalope isn’t sure how antisemitism “blows over”, particularly when the person committing the antisemitism insists he’s not. It’s going to be a real disappointment if Apple quietly starts ads up again in a few weeks without anything at all having fundamentally changed.
Ultimately we can say Apple did the right thing in both these instances. We can also ask the company to do better.