Sunday, January 30, 2011


I don’t know what it is about Apple. Whether it be the smugness of people who swear by its products, or the increasing ubiquity of the brand; I just don’t get it.

Don’t get me wrong, the iPhone and iPad are pretty and shiny bits of kit and Steve Jobs is undoubtedly a marketing and computing genius but there is something that alienates me about Apple.

Now for one thing, people who worship Jobs get on my nerves. I know the man is infinitely more charismatic and likeable than the likes of Steve Ballmer, Bill Gates and Larry Ellison and as I said before I respect what he’s achieved. Then again, I also equate Jobs to a drug dealer who gets you hooked on his expensive wears. This cartoon explains the matter further.

I am not a fan of how restrictive Apple products are. Sure, “there’s an app for everything” and all that, but I dislike the fact that the company keeps trying to make its customers use its own software instead of giving users access to apps and programmes they are familiar with and that are proven successes (Flash *Cough* FlashPlayer).

This then leads me to a major problem with Apple: iTunes. iTunes is horrible, just horrible. It is awkward to use, saps RAM from your PC and doesn’t support many music file formats. Then you have to contend with the fact that most Apple devices insist on you using the Bastard thing.
However, can 10 billion app downloaders be wrong? (Answer: yes, just because a lot of people like something doesn’t necessarily make it right or good, it might just mean they might be restricted to it by forces outside their control. Might I direct you to Nazi Germany or Sky TV as an example).

Mr Jobs also isn’t keen for users to freely download uncensored apps. A fair consideration in the case of porn, which could make upper middle class parents think twice before buying their precious Tabitha or Tristam an iPad for their birthday (although Hugh Hefner claims that the entire back catalogue of Playboy is coming to iPad, uncensored) but banning an app because of swearing, well that is just pathetic – fucking pathetic even. If I want to play Cuntblaster 3.0 on my iPod that’s my bloody choice ok!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Northern and Shell quit the PCC after one telling off too many

News oligarch Richard Desmond’s Northern and Shell publishing group has left the Press Complaints Commission. Just upped and left it. Not been cast out, not been asked to leave. It has just quit it.

In many ways it is a bit like the company has told the PCC that it is taking its proverbial ball and is going home with it as it doesn’t want to play anymore.

It’s not like Northern and Shell hasn’t had a scolding from the PCC in the past after all. Cast your mind back a couple of years and you may remember this atrocity, where the Scottish edition of The Express was forced to apologize for chastising the survivors of the Dunblane shootings for basically being teenagers.

Also remember the case of OK magazine, who tastelessly published, what can only be described as a pre-posthumous tribute, to then not-yet-dead celeb-felch that was Jade Goody.

This development will inevitably leave readers wondering who they should complain to if they dislike or disagree with something in The Daily Express or Ok? Well, you may be stuck there.

I suppose you could always complain to the publishers themselves, although it is questionable if they’ll necessarily take heed or not. You’d hope they would at least, especially in the interests of accuracy and not just attacking people as they wish, if they wish to be considered as serious publishers (so in other words no then).

The real question however, is whether this means that Northern and Shell produced publications can now just publish flagrant lies?

Perhaps this could lead to an entertaining turn of events where OK, The Express and The Star will descend into sheer fantasy. This could be quite funny if slightly depressing simultaneously. You might end up with headlines like: Katie Price convenes with ghost of Diana; Michael Owen buys Manchester; Britain to go on tour, says Prime Minister; Alan Titchmarsh in vice shame; Water is orange, your eyes are just wrong or All hail our new King Richard Desmond!

Having said all that though what is the point of a system where you can “opt in” to a regulatory organization in the first place? It’s like kindly asking a rapist to stop raping people and hoping that he listens.

For more information on the matter this site delivers a pretty decent summary of what’s been happening so far.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

The slow death of Christmas

Yes indeed folks, the fleeting period of festivities is over – well, over at least until the shops get their way to start flogging Christmas goods weeks after we take the decorations down, either that or we endure a perpetual Christmas season forced by the shops. Think about it, I’m sure we can use the economy to justify it somewhere.

It’s been an odd Christmas this year as it has felt like everyone has been trying to ignore the event so it will go away or have been begrudgingly accepting it at the very least, whilst really not wanting it to be there. Basically Christmas this time around has been a bit like a mangy blind old dog, with bladder problems, that just won’t leave you alone.

This year has been a real old-school “hard times” kind of Christmas. I’m quite honestly surprised we didn’t all get assigned regulation fingerless gloves and tatty macs. All the components were there, the snow, the recession, the alcoholism etc. It’s been a real taste of the 1980s.

Well, we might as well get used to the grim situation, even as we take down our Christmas decorations with that thin veil of regret that always tinges the occasion. Still the sparkly babuls, tinsel and the ad nauseum repetition of Merry Christmas Everybody by Slade, didn’t really distract people as much as it usually does.

Then again what do we have to look forward to now, as we endure eating the shit pie of going back to work (assuming you have a job in the first place of course, these being hard times after all) although this year we have been served a cool refreshing glass of piss to wash it all down with a VAT increase into the bargain.

And with that Christmas is finished for another year, until we start all over again in 11 months’ time.

(P.S. Did anyone think that from the title and picture that I was going to be discussing at length the disembowelment of Father Christmas? You did? You have a sick mind for making such a link.)