Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 4th May 2007 14:27 UTC, submitted by ozonehole
Apple "Colleagues at my former outlet, PC World magazine, have told me that Editor-in-Chief Harry McCracken quit abruptly today because the company's new CEO, Colin Crawford, tried to kill a story about Apple and Steve Jobs. The piece, a whimsical article titled 'Ten Things We Hate About Apple', was still in draft form when Crawford killed it. McCracken said no way and walked after Crawford refused to compromise. Apparently Crawford also told editors that product reviews in the magazine were too critical of vendors, especially ones who advertise in the magazine, and that they had to start being nicer to advertisers."
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Vogue Magazine
by fretinator on Fri 4th May 2007 14:40 UTC
fretinator
Member since:
2005-07-06

Most computer rags are there to sell products - that's why they are full of ads - just like Vogue magazine. Technology is not their main product. Reviews in these magazines are just to inform the readers of available features in these products. They are not journalism, so it doesn't surprise me that they do not want hard-hitting journalism. Most of the articles should be along the lines of "Tips 'N Tricks 4 Vista" or "Hear, Hear, the New Sound Cards are Here".


EDIT: Spelling

Edited 2007-05-04 14:51 UTC

Reply Score: 5

too bad..
by hollovoid on Fri 4th May 2007 14:47 UTC
hollovoid
Member since:
2005-09-21

I understand the buisness end of this, but then again I doubt the story was that bad in which apple would pull thier advertisements from such a widely known magazine for it. what now, Reviews on products to be censored? like if a product full of bugs and utter uselessness cant be slammed because they pay advertisement fees and might cry next to a bottle of whiskey and a lethal dose of vicotins?

Thats why you dont give the CEO of any company the only and final word on things, he doesnt own the company, the investors do, and the board as a whole should be in the decision. Which may be the case... but from the info so far... seems like a one man party going on.

Reply Score: 3

RE: too bad..
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 4th May 2007 14:54 UTC in reply to "too bad.."
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Reviews on products to be censored?

Luckily, on OSNews, we are not reliant on ads in any way (our ad income goes directly to our server guy, the rest of the staff gets nothing of it). Other than that, we have an ad broker, so no companies are paying directly for our ad space.

I guess it's mostly a question of integrity. I will never alter or change a review because the parent company of the product demands it; nor will Eugenia. The only thing I will change are factual mistakes, i.e. when I say product X can't do Y, while in fact, it can.

It also depends on the company. Just about any company we have dealt with on OSNews is actually happy with critique, since it tells them what they need to improve. Some companies, however, (let's not get into name calling) aren't as good at sportsmanship. Sad, but we'll live.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: too bad..
by fretinator on Fri 4th May 2007 15:06 UTC in reply to "RE: too bad.."
fretinator Member since:
2005-07-06

I guess it's mostly a question of integrity. I will never alter or change a review because the parent company of the product demands it; nor will Eugenia. The only thing I will change are factual mistakes, i.e. when I say product X can't do Y, while in fact, it can.


That's why if I want a _REAL_ review, I come to places like OSNews. Or TOM's Hardware, etc. I'm not dissing the PCWorld, PCMagazine, etc. They serve a different purpose. Sometimes I don't want to think, I just want to stare at pretty pictures of Video Cards and Laptops (I know, it sounds bad!). That's when I read one of the Mags. Different purpose.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: too bad..
by Luminair on Fri 4th May 2007 17:29 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: too bad.."
Luminair Member since:
2007-03-30

I thought you were sarcastic for a moment there. Tom's Hardware is not to be included on your list of independent reporters with integrity. They figuratively sold out years ago, and have recently sold out literally ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: too bad..
by fretinator on Fri 4th May 2007 17:56 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: too bad.."
fretinator Member since:
2005-07-06

I thought you were sarcastic for a moment there. Tom's Hardware is not to be included on your list of independent reporters with integrity. They figuratively sold out years ago, and have recently sold out literally ;)


Bummer, you're right, I haven't been there in a long time (maybe too long!). Basically, every day I make the rounds of OSNews, Slashdot (I know, not a lot of reality there!) and LinuxToday. I just subscribed to LinuxJournal, but haven't gotten my first issue yet. I also read Dr. Dobbs (I'm a software developer). Too bad about TOM's. Who else do y'all recommend?

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: too bad..
by StephenBeDoper on Sat 5th May 2007 17:59 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: too bad.."
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

ArsTechnica is pretty good. It has become rather long-winded lately though - my usual strategy is to skim OSNews for headlines and then go read the 6-900 word version on Ars if I want more detail/analysis.

Reply Score: 3

Tom's Hardware?
by mrfoo on Fri 4th May 2007 22:15 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: too bad.."
mrfoo Member since:
2007-05-04

I have heard from friends who worked at hardware distributors in Silicon Valley that good reviews at Tom's Hardware are paid for.

I don't know if it is true, but I stopped paying attention to them after hearing this a few more times since then.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: too bad..
by hollovoid on Fri 4th May 2007 15:33 UTC in reply to "RE: too bad.."
hollovoid Member since:
2005-09-21

Reviews on products to be censored?

Luckily, on OSNews, we are not reliant on ads in any way (our ad income goes directly to our server guy, the rest of the staff gets nothing of it). Other than that, we have an ad broker, so no companies are paying directly for our ad space.

And im sure like many others on here, thats why I come back many times a day, its interesting to see real opinions and views, instead of altered for politeness garbage found elsewhere. Press was given many freedoms, and its sad some of they're own aren't to keen at utilizing this because its "bad for buisness".

Cheers to those that stand strong.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: too bad..
by shykid on Fri 4th May 2007 17:25 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: too bad.."
shykid Member since:
2007-02-22

And im sure like many others on here, thats why I come back many times a day, its interesting to see real opinions and views, instead of altered for politeness garbage found elsewhere. Press was given many freedoms, and its sad some of they're own aren't to keen at utilizing this because its "bad for buisness".

Agreed. I love OSNews because I believe it's one of the most unbiased and comprehensive tech news/reviews sources on the Internet. I've been visiting this site for years, but I only started participating in the comments recently (my username says a lot ;) ).

The only site that comes close to competing with OSNews in terms of variety of tech news is Slashdot. But /. has too much of an anti-Microsoft, pro-open-source bias for my liking--that and I don't really care too much for the non-tech-related news--though I still lurk around there regardless for the occasional story that OSNews skips.

I think what Harry McCracken was very, very honorable, though part of me says that if he really cared about unbiased reviews, he would have left PC World ages ago. Maybe this was a last straw of sorts or something.

Reply Score: 3

RE: too bad..
by kaiwai on Sat 5th May 2007 04:59 UTC in reply to "too bad.."
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Even so, I understand their business, but at the same time, these businesses aren't going to stop giving 'free' hardware to these organisations as to avoid a bad review - they'll simply go out, purchase the hardware under the '7 day return policy', do a review then simply return it, or simply purchase it, and use it as a give away promotion.

Advertisers aren't going to leave because simply if the site gets the foot traffic, irrespective of their views on these matters, the advertisers will still come - there is something that is more valuable than ego, its money and audience.

Going offtopic of a wee bit, for me, I don't understand the loyalty that some people have to certain companies - its the equivilant of verilant nationalism and patrioticism. For me, I can say I like or prefer something over anothe product, but it doesn't mean I have some sort of undying loyalty to that particular company - as if I made some sort of blood oath.

Reply Score: 1

It's a symptom of a larger press problem
by phoehne on Fri 4th May 2007 15:12 UTC
phoehne
Member since:
2006-08-26

In the US especially, the press has become a lot less critical of everyone. Advertisers, politicians, companies and governments have all succeeded in getting editors to bend a little here and there. It's been okay for publications to take editorial positions, as evidenced in their editorial content. However, what's been happening in the last dozen years or so is a failure of publishers to stay critical and apart from the subject on which they report. The net result in the political press is a simple regurgitation of whoever said what without critically questioning the matter. In the technical press it's translated into "never a bad review." No product is ever really panned and when all else fails, print the back of the box touting the various "enterprise features" contained in the product. (Who cares if they're buggy or don't really work.)

Reply Score: 5

polaris20 Member since:
2005-07-06

Yeah, ditto. I am also a guitar player. A geek guitar, weird combo, I know. Guitars that had they been reviewed 10 years ago as having shoddy fretwork, large gaps in neck pockets, sloppy gluework for set-necks, mis-aligned pole pieces for pickups, etc are now reviewed as being "some minor cosmetics flaws, but overall a fantastic value!"

It happens in all industries, unfortunately.

Reply Score: 1

One source is never enough
by Laurence on Fri 4th May 2007 16:01 UTC
Laurence
Member since:
2007-03-26

Reviews are always going to be a subjective account of a personal experience - that why whenever i look into buying a new product i check at least two sources to see how the product fairs on average.

Even the most reliable publications / sites get it wrong from time to time so anyone who takes PC World Magazine as gospal is going to get burnt occationally.

Reply Score: 1

RE: One source is never enough
by kaiwai on Sat 5th May 2007 05:29 UTC in reply to "One source is never enough"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Reviews are always going to be a subjective account of a personal experience - that why whenever i look into buying a new product i check at least two sources to see how the product fairs on average.


True, I remember hearing people complain about a product on a forum - "I'm never going to purchase zyx from ayz again!".

When I helped them work through the problem they had, it had nothign to do with their hardware and everything to do with their computer/operating system setup.

Hence one has to take these reviews with several buckets of salt - the outcome of it can be affected by a number of circumstances which seems that most people ignore.

Reply Score: 2

Classic
by Ikshaar on Fri 4th May 2007 16:19 UTC
Ikshaar
Member since:
2005-07-14

As said before I cannot recall last time I read one of these magazines and there was actually a critic of something...of anything... even the coffee mug holder in place of your CD-drive got good reviews ;)

Almost funny to realize how dependent of the web we have become to find reviews that even if not unbiased at least allow you to rapidly compare different point of view.

Actually now that I think of it, one magazine (forgot which) has 2 editorials one "I like" one "I don't like" about same device/software.... still hope i guess.

Reply Score: 1

Anandtech
by brynjolf on Fri 4th May 2007 17:31 UTC
brynjolf
Member since:
2007-04-06

Anyone remembers Anandtech? Hear Hear Luminair.

Reply Score: 1

Hardware reviews
by DonQ on Fri 4th May 2007 18:13 UTC
DonQ
Member since:
2005-06-29

Offtopic, but if you're interested in good hardware reviews then I'd recommend www.xbitlabs.com.

Reply Score: 1

There has to be a balance
by jaypee on Fri 4th May 2007 18:18 UTC
jaypee
Member since:
2005-07-28

I can understand not wanting to lose advertisers, as they are the lifeblood of a print publication. However, many readers look to a magazine, particularly one which reviews/rates products, for a certain objectivity that helps inform their decisions/perspectives. If your recommendation helps steer me to a product that I end up dissatisfied with and I find out your rating is based on your business relationship with that company, I would no longer buy the magazine.

This is where the balance comes into play. Advertisers pay for eyeballs to view their ads and, hopefully, buy their products. If you lose credibility with readers, you lose subscriptions and advertisers.

Reply Score: 1

10 things we don't like about Apple?
by tyrione on Fri 4th May 2007 19:40 UTC
tyrione
Member since:
2005-11-21

Write in on your own personal blog. Leave your work with your job. If the boss cancels a post and won't budge writing about it on the Internet is chicken s***.

Reply Score: 0

reviews
by transputer_guy on Fri 4th May 2007 20:31 UTC
transputer_guy
Member since:
2005-07-08

I quite like to see reviews done by the opposing sides ie OSX by the PC guys and Vista by the Mac guys, usually they are a bit more honest or even a little brutal since most folks do have to deal with multiple OSes. This also cancels out advertiser interest since I don't suppose Apple spends much in PC mags and MS in Mac mags.

Reply Score: 1

the Customers
by airwedge1 on Fri 4th May 2007 21:04 UTC
airwedge1
Member since:
2006-02-22

I think the ceo is getting things all wrong. The way it works is people read the magazine, and because people read the magazine, clients pay for advertisements. (obviously). Why does the news now a days have 50% death and destruction? Because thats what people like to watch. The same goes for this magazine. People want to have an article that bashes, and intentionally or not thats why people read it. People don't want to read one great review after another. In my opinion leading down where the ceo is going, is going to get less readers, and hence less advertisement. I also doubt the article was that bad as well, and apple probably wouldn't even mind it being publishes.

Reply Score: 1

RE: One source is never enough
by kaiwai on Sat 5th May 2007 05:55 UTC
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

Reviews are always going to be a subjective account of a personal experience - that why whenever i look into buying a new product i check at least two sources to see how the product fairs on average.


True, I remember hearing people complain about a product on a forum - "I'm never going to purchase zyx from ayz again!". When I helped them work through the problem they had, it had nothign to do with their hardware and everything to do with their computer/operating system setup.

Hence one has to take these reviews with several buckets of salt - the outcome of it can be affected by a number of circumstances which seems that most people ignore.

Regarding Toms Hardware, they've received alot of flack, first by the AMD community over their perceived bias towards Intel or in regards to reviewing reviewing graphics cards, how distorted benchmarks can get using standard benchmarking tools.

Arstechnica I've found provides good indepth articles about architecture - so if you want to find out about the inner workings of Core 2, then that is the best place to go.

For hardware reviews, worse case scenario, purchase the hardware, and if it doesn't work reliably within the first 7 days of purchasing it, return it to the place you bought it from, you'll get a refund without any questions asked. If enough people use that service (return in 7 days), the shops will get the message that the hardware is problem prone, and as a result, stop selling it, then the distributor will stop importing it, sending a message back to the company that their hardware is a liability and will no longer be sold through their partners retail channels.

ps. take the 20 minute off, its stupid, I just finished typing this one, and found that the post I was trying to edit was 'expired' when I sent it.

Reply Score: 2

Credibility went out the window
by vinzer on Sat 5th May 2007 11:58 UTC
vinzer
Member since:
2006-08-16

Apparently, PC World is just a marketing machine for advertisers who bought space there. Don't bother about the articles anymore. They're more marketing spin than factual journalism.

Thank God for the internet. Magazines don't have the clout and influence they used to have back then.

Reply Score: 1

bousozoku
Member since:
2006-01-23

Since the beginning of the magazine in the 1980s, PC World has been fat because of advertising and short on articles. I never counted but I suspected that more than 60 % of the pages went to advertising.

PC Magazine often did quite obvious repayments in their big tests in the earlier days. They might gush wildly about a product, but it was another, only adequate product that would win the test.

PC World isn't literature and no one should expect it to be.

Reply Score: 1

Time for the hatred to end.
by alban on Mon 7th May 2007 14:08 UTC
alban
Member since:
2005-11-15

Surely Apple have finally done pretty well everything the PC magazine editors always said that they wanted them to do. Other than cease trading of course.

Reply Score: 1