I found this article on CNET.com, on Apple CEO Steve Jobs saying “If you want porn, get an android”. It’s an interesting example of how corporate governance can be used to manage the image of a brand.
Apple effectively controls the listing of pornographic products on its iTunes online store. Creating the suggestion that it is taking a moral stand, in that even though pornography can still find it’s way onto iPhones by the user’s own initiative by personal web browsing or pc downloads, by taking control of the one channel of distribution under it’s control (iTunes App store proprietary online store) it would appear to not approve of the use of pornography on iPhones.
Although I do know of a Samsung Galaxy S owner with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) (chronic tendinitis of the wrists and flanges as a result of too much unnatural arching and repetitive stroking hand and finger movements over an extended period of time), the CTS condition was pre-existing so I doubt that the Android platform and it’s openness to all manner of apps was the cause of the CTS.
This reminds us that it is the users’ own horniness that determines what content they access and what they use their battery powered portable “entertainment” devices for.
So even if we know that it is the user not the device that matters, why is it that Apple is taking this moral position?
The answer is because of IMAGE, and image is Apple’s actual product.
By adding this brand value of “Morality”, Apple is enhancing it’s brand marketability to both moral people, and people that want to keep up the appearance of morality.
This is a brilliant Corporate Social Responsibility marketing strategy by the world’s largest corporation by market capitalisation. Take a moral stand on one aspect of the business and draw more attention to it. Even though, given it is a rather safe position against “categorically objectionable content”, rather than anything with more diverse sensitivities like religion, sexuality or ethnicity.
Shrewd industry leadership by Steve Jobs, he knows that he will be selling to a significant number of hypocrites but he’s smart enough to know that people have common sense enough to know that he’s selling the appearance of morality. And they’re buying it by the billion$.
Enjoy the read. Cheers! 🙂
April 20, 2010 10:19 AM PDT
Steve Jobs: If you want porn, get an Android
by Chris Matyszczyk
Pornography, like disappointment, is a hard thing to avoid.
As both production and access have become easier and cheaper, there seems an endless number of (free) opportunities to discreetly partake of the same scenes over and over again played by different actors with different surgical histories.
However, if the latest e-mail purportedly sent by Apple CEO Steve Jobs to a customer called Matthew Browning is, indeed, genuine, then Apple seems to be reaching for some moral high ground, which may or may not be virtual.
Browning wrote to Jobs because he was concerned that Apple was choosing to become something that I don’t remember seeing on “The Wire”: a moral policeman. Browning worried that Apple’s initial blocking of an app by satirical cartoonist, Mark Fiore, sent a dubious signal. He then went on to discuss Apple’s stance on porn.
According to TechCrunch, he wrote: “I’m all for keeping porn out of kids hands. Heck–I’m all for ensuring that I don’t have to see it unless I want to. But…that’s what parental controls are for. Put these types of apps into categories and allow them to be blocked by their parents should they want to.”
To the untrained eye, ear, and moral compass, this seems like wise logic. However, the Apple CEO reportedly replied: “Fiore’s app will be in the store shortly. That was a mistake. However, we do believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone. Folks who want porn can buy and (sic) Android phone.”
It’s a peculiar moral dilemma for cell phone manufacturers, this porn thing. Google’s Android, having hoisted its flag of openness, must sail by it. Perhaps it will, at some future date, decide whether there’s a point at which the doors are excessively ajar. However, late last year, a company with the dubiously cute name of MiKandi was the first to brag about its Androidable porn store and I’ve not noticed reports of people on the streets with placards desperate for the stoning of its CEO.
It’s not hard to consider this a debate about image rather than reality. There is surely nothing to stop you, should you be so inclined, from opening up the Safari browser on your iPhone and surfing for as much porn as your little heart cares to consume.
I’m not suggesting you should, merely that you can. Isn’t the truth that Apple can’t stop porn from appearing on the iPhone, but it can attempt (the Playboy app being just one curious exception) to avoid the perception that the company is directly making money from it?
Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-17852_3-20002922-71.html#ixzz1F2VhZtZA