Daniel Eran Dilger
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EFF, Wired, MarketWatch, Yahoo: Outrage ensues over Apple’s reporting of iPhone prototype theft

Daniel Eran Dilger

Enemies of Apple are boiling to the surface like ants scrambling from a rotten log on fire. Their outrage emanates from a deep moral disgust over the company reporting the theft of its property and appealing to the rule of law.
.EFF: there is never theft in the Communist Paradise

The first sign of abhorrence directed toward Apple came from the EFF, which most definitely is not Apple’s BFF. This is the group seeking to convert the success of Apple’s iPhone App Store into a communal software paradise like that of Linux, where everyone writes their own code and proprietors can suck it. For the EFF, there’s no such thing as intellectual property, and it’s really just a small intellectual leap to say there’s no such thing as property.

And if you don’t have ownership, you can’t have theft. That appears to be the manifesto of the EFF, which has taken the position it once argued in behalf of bloggers (in a case including AppleInsider), that insisted investigative writers of all sorts should be accorded the legal protections of journalists in protecting their sources, and extrapolated a new understanding that suggests you can commit any sort of property theft as long as you write about it afterward.

Boom: instant protection! The Shield Law for journalists is now a way to prevent police from investigating crimes. Just explicitly state the amount you paid for stolen merchandise in your blog, print private personal information about the victim you deprived of his property, then claim you have no idea who the property could have belonged to and Shazam! you are a journalist shrouded in a cloak of magical invincibility.

DailyTech – Gizmodo Staff May Face Felony Over Lost iPhone, EFF Says Raid Was Illegal

Don’t Task, Don’t Tell

Since theft simply doesn’t exist without the capitalist fiction of personal property, and considering that the real victim is always the person who benefits from stealing from moneyed fat cat corporations, the obvious conclusion is that anyone who supports the rule of law or asks for protection and redress under it must be downright square. And a narc. And perhaps a witch.

The real outrage is that Apple works with the Po-Po to prevent theft and recover stolen property. What bastards. And when it finds people have taken its stuff, it tattles to the police and then forces the District Attorney to take the theft seriously. I know when my friends have had their iPhones stolen at a bar, it’s just a funny thing we laugh about.

Once I text messaged a thief who had taken my friend’s phone along with his jacket and keys and wallet, offering a reward for return. The theft told me to copulate with myself, albeit using the German word. I laughed for days at his hardline stance against the Man and my naively slavish devotion to the concept of property, intellectual or otherwise. It made me want to leave my own iPhone sitting on a bar stool, just so I could relive the excitement of spreading my resources around to the finders-keepers community.

Surely, the fact that Apple “provides training, personnel, and support” to the Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team, a group of 17 local, state, and federal law-enforcement agencies headquartered in the corporation’s own Santa Clara County, biases the government agencies in favor of Apple as a victim of theft, and predisposes it against the thieves. This is fascism at its worst.

This is also another disgusting abrogation of freedom in our country, where the government increasingly plays a role favoring victims of crime rather than the perpetrators of theft. What we really need to do is to elect another Republican governor for California like, say, Carly Fiorina, so she can further downsize the burdensome regulatory rule of law and lay off the oppressive role of Gubment like so many axed HP employees. Once that happens, Goldman Sachs and others who have acquired wealth illegally can hold onto it without being roughed up by federal bureaucrats and their tax collecting socialist-fascist pawns who want to build public works like schools and highways rather than subsidizing private enterprise like the state subsidized prisons designed to hold immigrants and pot smokers.

The report of Apple’s outrageous collusion with REACT was broken by John Cook, a reporter for the esteemed “Yahoo! News” and (secretly) a former blogger employed by the same Gawker Media that sponsored the checkbook journalism that resulted in Gizmodo’s property seizure investigation in the first place. If you follow the money trail, it leads right to the crime. And to the report of the crime, spun as a conspiracy by Gawker’s friends. And that conspiracy involves Apple. Guilty as charged, Steve Jobs.

What is Apple Inc.’s role in task force investigating iPhone case? – Yahoo! News

A Conflict of Interest

Clearly, there is some sort of “conflict of interest” going on here, as many readers of the Cook articles have observed. It’s certainly in Apple’s interest to prevent theft and seek damages for theft in order to dissuade potential thieves from taking and holding its property for weeks, and or selling it to the highest bidder, or trafficking stolen property with the intent of materially benefitting from exposed trade secrets. The police involved in REACT similarly have an interest in preventing computer-related theft in Apple’s backyard of Silicon Valley.

The conflict, it seems, relates to the interest in thieving on the part of people who are not Apple nor the police. Or perhaps the conflict in interest involves journalists who write about a subject as if they are non-biased observers simply recounting facts, when in reality they have an interest in making their former employer look innocent and perhaps unjustly aggrieved as the victim of a criminal investigation.

Whatever the conflict, it certainly is interesting. And who better than Cook is qualified to report on the subject of his former employer’s investigation, under the suggestion that members of society who support the rule of law are somehow involved in a conflict of interest when they seek assistance from said police? It’s fortunate that Gawker Media is not just financing checkbook journalism, but also spinning off journalists who can tell its side of the story to the people, and not to the investigating police, who are clearly conflicted about Gawker’s interest in acquiring stolen property.

Let’s See What the Criminal Experts at Wired Have to Say

It’s not just Gawker Media’s former employees who are disgusted by this collusion of Apple and the police sticking their noses into the smoking guns of crime scenes. What about high profile computer crime experts who know enough about the subject to have spent time in prison for mail, wire and computer fraud, money laundering, and obstruction of justice?

Kevin Poulsen, aka Dark Dante, spent the second half of the 1990s in federal prison, and the second half of the 2000’s in his current role as the senior editor of Wired. His “Threat Level” blog has been a merciless critic of Apple and the iPhone, starting with an article that falsely suggested the iPhone was as insecure as Windows 95.

Poulsen was so upset to receive RoughlyDrafted criticism over the irresponsible, alarmist story Wired published under his watch that he printed a personal attack posting that compared me to Ron Paul’s supporters, ignoring all of the actual criticisms of his misleading and inaccurate report dripping with sensationalism and ignorant nonsense about supposed security issues.

Kevin Poulsen Attacks Ron Paul, iPhone, Mac Users In a Single Broad Brush of Wired Incompetence

Wired then demonstrated the flexibility of the definition of journalism when it printed a hit piece on the iPhone in Japan, which falsely attributed comments to people who did not say them, and then falsely attributed the comments to other sources after the first publicly denied having said it, then removed attribution entirely after the second source also denied having said the comments Wired had stuffed in their mouth (that Japanese people thought the iPhone was unsophisticated, the message Wired wanted to publish regardless of what the Japanese were actually saying about it).

Apparently, Wired’s editors thought they could report on what people in Japan though about the iPhone without actually reporting, and just making up false statements instead. Turns out it was not safe to bet that people in Japan don’t read Wired, and don’t have any hangups about being falsely said to have made comments they did not agree with. Wired never corrected its story, even after the iPhone went on to become the most popular phone in Japan.

AppleInsider | Japanese “hate” for iPhone all a big mistake

It’s therefore understandable that Wired might want to spin similar fictions to vilify Apple as the aggressor theft victim and the thieves as misunderstood, beneficently charming people who were working hard to return the iPhone prototype for weeks as they actually shopped it around to media sources.

Wired advocates theft via creative language

There’s nothing creative about saying something you found and kept, despite knowing who the owner was and making no actual attempt to contact them or present it to the authorities, was lost rather than stolen. What takes real creative balls is saying that selling stolen merchandise is really a matter of “giving exclusive access to the device in exchange for $5,000.”

This is kind of like blaming a rape victim for looking sexy, and then saying the pimp who sold her for sex was really just providing “exclusive access” in exchange for a great deal of money. Not really crime, just a gentlemen’s agreement of sorts, where money crosses hands in exchange for something, but not for the purpose you’d think because that would be illegal. Completely above board, legitimate exclusive access to stolen property in exchange for thousands of dollars. Not really selling anything, just exchanging thousands of dollars in an effort to figure out how to return the device most efficiently by way of blog network, because that’s the best way to return stuff you’ve stolen.

The actual person who picked up the phone and kept it wasn’t a thief, Wired writes, but rather a “finder” who “attempted to notify Apple and find the owner of the device but failed, even going so far as to search alphabetically through Facebook.” Apparently this level of failure didn’t prevent the thief from recounting exactly who the owner was by way of his Facebook page, and providing this information to Gizmodo along with “exclusive access” (and possession) of the stolen device so that Gizmodo could scribble up an account of what a jerk the engineer was for leaving it behind.

Perhaps Wired’s senior editor is back in prison again and can’t read over this insanely written garbage to extract some semblance of coherent logic. Gizmodo claimed that attempts were made to return the phone as they furiously worked to disassemble it and take pictures of the Apple logos within as they attempted to determine who it might possibly belong to. Yet Wired’s bizarrely written account makes it clear that Apple went to the home of the thief to ask for the return of the prototype and was refused. So who is lying? Or perhaps, is anyone not lying?

Apple would certainly know where to go because the prototype phone was linked to MobileMe, making it trackable right up until the company remotely wiped it. So Apple had a position and an identity of the thief from the first day. Yet Wired then says the thief/finder held onto the phone for “weeks” afterward, ineffectually trying to restore it using iTunes after it was wiped by Apple. All while suggesting they were trying to figure out who it might belong to and how they could possibly return it.

During that time, the thief/finder shopped it around to various sources, including Wired and Engadget. Not a day after it was found, but as early as March 28, according to Wired. So the thief/finder sat on it for weeks, then sold it to Gizmodo, then more weeks went by before it was printed up and any attempt was ever made to return it, even though all along everyone involved knew it belonged to an Apple engineer. And yet Wired still strains to call the event anything other than what it was: a stolen piece of property sold to the highest bidder after weeks of possession while no efforts were made to return it.

What shred of journalistic integrity does Wired still possess?

Apple May Have Traced iPhone to Finder’s Address | Threat Level | Wired.com

Speaking of no journalistic integrity

So say you’re Dan Gallagher and Rex Crum and you need a sensational bit on Apple written up for MarketWatch. What do you do? Get on the horn with Roger Kay and Rob Enderle. Seriously, because who else can generate outrageous fear mongering negativity about Apple like these two shameless corporate shills who have never ever said anything remotely non-negative about Apple?

The story is about Apple reporting the theft of its prototype. The angle: “Analysts” (that’s Kay and Enderle, they’re the analysts forming the backbone of this “story”) say Apple is going to look bad for reporting the crime. Analyst Kay sounded like he just randomly picked a generic Apple FUD fortune cookie from his basket. “There is no way that this is not negative in some way for the company,” Kay said. Wow, with insight like that, you could be kept in perpetual employment as blogger fodder without every needing to be right, or even specific.

Remember when Kay told NPR, “You have to squeeze your fat fingers onto this fairly small, glass surface and hope to hit the right key,” well before the iPhone was released and before he had ever touched one? “That could be quite challenging.” What insight this man has.

Enderle’s huffing also sounded curiously familiar, as if the deep scratching of broken record. “Apple has been drifting into looking like the wrong side of their famous Big Brother ad for some time,” Enderle said. MarketWatch described him as “a longtime Silicon Valley technology analyst.” To emphasize the potential fear level that could be involved, Enderle added, “This could easily turn out to be one of the biggest mistakes the firm has ever made because the investigation … could showcase other Apple problems as this story snowballs.”

Yes, it might be revealed that Apple also reported other criminal activities in the past. Who knows, there might be an out of control China Syndrome that erupts into a tempestuous wellspring of bad publicity. Perhaps Enderle could guide us through this maelstrom of public discontent, as he’s worked so furiously to do over the past decade, condemning the iPhone as “damned” and a possible cause of potential rapes because he didn’t realize it could have an emergency call button. Enderle also said the iPhone “signaled the potential end for the stand-alone iPod” and said 2007 “will be a difficult year for Apple, and the iPhone could be more of a drag on earnings than a help.”

Next up, lets interview some Tea Party protesters about whether President Obama is a socialist-fascist or a fascist-socialist. This should generate a substantive news story.

Troy Wolverton Digs Up Rob Enderle In Desperate Apple Attack
New York Times Violates its Own Microsoft Shill Policy
Apple doing itself harm in case of missing iPhone – MarketWatch

How to avoid getting busted

So what happens when you find something that doesn’t belong to you? Well for starters, you could be a hero and return it to its owner rather than mocking him in public for losing it while parading it around. But if you do happen to stumble upon a hot secret prototype, you might want to take lots of pictures and then try to sell the pictures (not criminally illegal) rather than fence the stolen property (is criminally illegal) and then try to rephrase it after the fact as if you were making some good faith effort to offer exclusive possession to a media outlet who might return it for you. Because that’s amateur pretty crime that will likely get you in pretty deep trouble.

As everyone knows, the police exist to protect affluent people’s property. Mess with rich people’s stuff and you’ll be crushed by the Po-Po if you’re stupid enough to publicly advertise bragging about having bought or sold the stolen merchandize.

What about if you find yourself being busted? Sorry you’re screwed. When the cops take your computers, they don’t give it back. The wheels of justice turn slowly and crush little people. Time to buy new stuff. By the time you get it back, it will be completely obsolete. If the police are bashing your door down, it’s a little late to be thinking about your next move. You’re already remotely wiped.


1 ChuckO { 04.28.10 at 3:54 pm }

In many cases the Police don’t rush to press charges. I think with the level of public scrutiny in this case that probably accounts for them taking their time. they have no reason to rush.

I personally think some expensive legal bills are all Gizmodo and Chen should get out of this but they have to face some sort of punishment to avoid moral hazard. As important as it is to protect the rights of the press in a free society discouraging scumbags from exploiting those rights when they are trying to punish Apple for not supplying a review iPad model or to just try to profit from page views is equally important.

2 ChuckO { 04.28.10 at 4:08 pm }

…maybe not equally important but important.

Whoa! HP just bought Palm. Very interesting. Looks like they want their own OS.

3 pdjudd { 04.28.10 at 5:43 pm }

Thanks for the clarification Dan, I guess that I am still scratching my head as to how Gizmodo got to the phone if it was tracked before wiping. That shouldn’t have happened given that the original finder had it for three weeks before Giz got it. I guess this will become clearer as we learn more.

That being said, it is all rather moot – The warrant execution to Jason Chen was not about identifying the finder – that was not necessary as Apple had identified him already.

Again thanks for the clarification.

4 MikieV { 04.28.10 at 5:44 pm }


Thanks for the link, although I don’t see how it helps your argument, e.g the next-to-last paragraph:

“Sandoval reported that San Mateo County prosecutors told CNET “they considered early on whether newsroom search laws applied–and decided to proceed only after carefully reviewing the rules.” Chief deputy district attorney Stephen Wagstaffe noted that the prosecutor “considered this issue right off the bat” and “had some good reasons why he and the judge felt the warrant was properly issued.”

The delay in searching through the material which was confiscated is -probably- not [I have no first-hand information] due to an error on the part of people who authorized or executed the search warrant, but more likely the fact that our legal system allows for the accused to appeal such actions, and file motions to dismiss and/or suppress such evidence.

They aren’t going to jump into Chen’s files until they are sure all of the legalistic “Monday Morning Quarterbacking” has run its course, and their considered opinion of the validity of the search & seizure has passed review.

5 KenC { 04.28.10 at 5:52 pm }

“HCE { 04.28.10 at 9:15 am }
1. From my point of view, Gizmodo definitely qualifies as a journal and Jason Chen is most definitely a journalist. So the shield law *does* apply to them.”
Yes, if they are protecting their source. They have no “shield” to protect their own possible crime.

“HCE { 04.28.10 at 9:15 am }
2. The way I understand it, if the police had determined that Gizmodo and/or Jason Chen *had* in fact committed a crime”
May have committed a crime.

“HCE { 04.28.10 at 9:15 am }
3. We find however, based on statements, made by the police, that they have not yet made that determination but they have raided and confiscated Jason Chen’s property nonetheless. That property is now in the possession of the police but is not going to be examined until the police determine that a crime has been committed.”
No, the police haven’t made any official statement. Some people have related parts of their discussion with DAs, but no official “statements”. They are going to reevaluate whether the shield law offers any protection for JC’s property. Unlike Gizmodo, the DA is going to think about this twice before acting further. Only if Gizmodo had sought outside legal advice and not relied upon the opinion of their COO, not a legally licensed lawyer in California or the US, but a trial lawyer from the UK.

“HCE { 04.28.10 at 9:15 am }
This is something I have a big problem with. Until such time as the police had determined that Jason Chen had committed a crime, he was entitled to the protection of the shield law and the police had no business breaking into his home and taking his stuff (even with a warrant).”
No, noone knows yet whether JC committed a crime. They need only determine whether he MAY have committed a crime, and clearly he may have, so they were able to get a warrant.

“HCE { 04.28.10 at 9:15 am }
All of this begs the question as to whether Steve Jobs/Apple “leaned on” the police/DA’s office to get them to do this. Of course, to be fair to Apple, we should not, absent any evidence come to this conclusion. As far as I can tell, Apple’s actions in this have been perfectly correct and reasonable. It is what the police have done that worries me.”
Everyone and anyone can try to lean on the DA, but whether it works or not is up to the DA. If the DA can’t make a case, no matter how much you lean on them, it’s pointless, cause they’ll lose in court. So, the idea that Apple leaned on the DA tells me that too many people watch too many cop movies.

6 HCE { 04.28.10 at 6:24 pm }


> Thanks for the link, although I don’t see how it helps your argument,
> e.g the next-to-last paragraph:

There are two statements in Dan’s article that seem to contradict each other. The first has the police saying that they looked at the applicability of the shield laws and decided to go ahead with the warrant. The very next statement seems to indicate that the police have not yet examined the items that they took from Jason Chen because they have not determined if the shield laws apply.

> They aren’t going to jump into Chen’s files until they are sure all of the
> legalistic “Monday Morning Quarterbacking” has run its course, and
> their considered opinion of the validity of the search & seizure has
> passed review.

My point is that they this “legalistic Monday-morning-Quarterbacking” should have never been necessary. Make sure you are completely in the clear and *then* go in and do your search and seizure. Gawker Media isn’t some fly-by-night operation. All that would be needed was a subpoena for the information and a commitment from Gawker Media (under penalty of perjury) that they would not attempt to destroy the evidence in any way. They would have honored such a subpoena, and the police could have seized Chen’s property once they had completed their legal due-diligence.

My feeling (which is based on absolutely no information) is that they initially didn’t examine the shield law issue hard enough and then on re-examining it, they had second thoughts and backpedaled a bit.


7 donarb { 04.28.10 at 8:10 pm }

A subpoena is as useless here as a condom. A subpoena is a document that orders a person to appear for depositions prior to or during a trial. The police are pursuing a criminal investigation. Since there is no indictment, not even an arrest, there is no trial yet. The document you are talking about is a warrant, and it has already been issued.

8 rale { 04.28.10 at 8:23 pm }

Great post! My favorite part, which caused me to laugh out loud:

Analyst Kay sounded like he just randomly picked a generic Apple FUD fortune cookie from his basket. “There is no way that this is not negative in some way for the company,” Kay said.

I’ve resolved to never visit the Gizmo site again. If enough of us stay away, they’ll soon dry up and disappear, regardless of the outcome of this investigation.

9 HCE { 04.28.10 at 9:24 pm }


> A subpoena is a document that orders a person to appear for
> depositions prior to or during a trial.

You can subpoena objects as well as people. The definition of subpoena is

“a writ issued by a government agency that has authority to compel testimony by a witness or ****production of evidence****”

There are two types of subpoena

1. subpoena ad testificandum orders a person to testify before the ordering authority
2. subpoena duces tecum orders a person to bring physical evidence before the ordering authority

As per the shield law, unless Jason Chen is suspected of having committed a crime, a search warrant cannot be issued on his home. A subpoena for all his digital equipment can, however, be issued with the stipulation that he preserve all his equipment without destroying or otherwise tampering with it until such time as it has been produced in court and examined.

Of course Jason Chen could contest the subpoena (this is what the shield law allows him to do) but until and unless a court agrees with him and cancels the subpoena, he is legally compelled to preserve his equipment and not tamper with it in any way.

There was no danger that Chen and/or Gawker would violate the law so there was no reason to rush in and grab everything from his home. The subpoena would have legally compelled them to preserve their stuff and, if the DA decided to charge Jason Chen or Gizmodo with a crime, they could then have gone in with a search warrant.

Whatever else we may think of Chen and Gawker, they are entitled to due process.


10 Neil Anderson { 04.28.10 at 9:25 pm }

Wow. Seems like in Apple’s case the EFF is EFF U.

11 addicted44 { 04.28.10 at 9:41 pm }

Dan:”War on Drugs and Herbs”

That is an awesome title. I google searched that expression (with the quotes around it) and this page was the only result that showed up.

You have invented a great expression, and I hope it shows up on many protest banners, especially with the California vote on Marijuana coming up, later this year.

Gizmodo obviously screwed up. My only question is whether the cops also didn’t screw up. I mean, I agree with you that Gizmodo wasn’t protected by the Shield Laws if the cops were charging them of a crime. But was that what they stated on their search warrants? From the delay since seizing the equipment, I have a feeling that the cops did not thrink this completely through (ironically echoing our protagonists, Gizmodo, in this regard) and ended up screwing what should have been a simple, and cut and dry case (lets not forget that all the evidence, and confessions needed have been posted publicly on the world wide webtubes for all and sundry to see and archive).

I still cant believe that Gizmodo was stupid enough to tell people they paid money (as well as the amount!) for this.

12 tundraboy { 04.28.10 at 10:14 pm }

@HCE: “The only way they can examine his stuff is either if they determine that he isn’t a journalist . . . or if they determine if he committed a crime (in which case the shield law does not apply). My position is that since they have not determined either of the above facts, they had no business taking his stuff.”

I think only a court of law can “determine” if a crime has been committed. The police can’t make that determination. The police, however, are charged to investigate and gather evidence if they believe that a crime has been committed, and there are rather strict statutory requirements for that ‘belief’ to be a valid basis to launch an investigation.

What you are asking, that it first be determined that someone committed crime before his stuff can be taken and investigated to see if it contains evidence that he did commit a crime actually falls under Chapter 17, Section H of Catch-22. It’s an interesting read.

13 gplawhorn { 04.28.10 at 10:21 pm }

Lots of barroom lawyers here, obviously. Ok, so a law is alleged (it has not been proven in a court of law) to have been broken, thus the search warrant. California criminal code does require finders to turn property over to the police. But consider a some other points:

1) There is a presumption of innocence in the United States. Nothing has yet been proven in a court of law, and so – the court of public opinion notwithstanding – Chen is presumed innocent at this point. This doesn’t mean that he is factually innocent, just that there is no legal evidence of guilt (evidence ruled admissible by a judge).  

2) The burden of proof is not on the finder or Chen, but upon the prosecution. He’s probably grateful that some posting here are not his jury, since they’ve prejudged his guilt. I highly recommend either “To Kill A Mockingbird” or a civics class.  

3) If this is a first offense then jail or imprisonment is almost certainly out of the picture, although a fine might be levied. Chen might also plead guilty or no contest.

4) Finally, this wouldn’t have made the back page of the Podunk Daily News if it weren’t about Apple. I’m as curious as the next guy in a morbid sort of way, but it really doesn’t matter. If Chen is convicted it won’t spell the end of journalism as we know it. If Chen gets off it won’t create an industrial espionage free-for-all. And Apple’s fortunes aren’t going to be injured. 

By the way, I’m just curious as to why those who are so quick to convict Chen without a trial are giving the guy who lost the phone in the first place a pass. I would bet that his actions, while not against California law, violated an agreement or two with his employer. 

14 somepunk { 04.28.10 at 10:55 pm }

when i read the wired article i didn’t get the impression that apple contacted the person after he found the phone and before he sold it to gizmodo. my reading is that they contacted him on the 20th of april (last week) — this was after the phone was sold to gizmodo, reported on the web and subsequently returned to apple.

i have no idea why anyone would allow anyone besides law enforcement into their homes to conduct a search.

perhaps i read it wrong though.

15 HCE { 04.28.10 at 10:58 pm }


> What you are asking, that it first be determined that someone
> committed crime before his stuff can be taken and investigated to
> see if it contains evidence that he did commit a crime

A couple of misconceptions

1. *I* am not asking anything. If Jason Chen is a journalist in the eyes of the law, then the law seems to forbid the police from searching his home with a search warrant unless he is suspected of having committed a crime.

2. It is up to the police to determine if a crime has been committed. It may seem obvious to you (and me too – I think what Gizmodo did was criminal) but it does not matter what you or I think. What matters is whether or not the police believe that Gizmodo’s acquisition of the phone was a criminal act. From their conflicting statements on this matter, it would appear that they are in some doubt about this.


16 GeorgeFromNY { 04.29.10 at 12:09 am }


Agreed; Dan’s political spleen-ventings are even more jarring when contrasted with the precise and articulate prose constituting the main topic.

It gives a schizophrenic tone to the whole thing – like someone calmly discussing his favorite songs, suddenly shouting DAMMIT I HATE BROCCOLI, then returning to the subject of music.

17 ludachrs { 04.29.10 at 6:09 am }

“What we really need to do is to elect another Republican governor for California like, say, Carly Fiorina, so she can further downsize the burdensome regulatory rule of law and lay off the oppressive role of Gubment like so many axed HP employees.”
Perhaps we can elect another Obama Democrat in California to redistribute all of the wealth from everyone and make a workers paradise like North Korea and even spend far more than the money than taken in. Awesome!!

18 gplawhorn { 04.29.10 at 6:42 am }

According to a opinion piece in the Los Angeles Times this morning, a journalist’s notes and unpublished photos cannot be seized with a warrant. A judge must issue a subpoena, allowing the journalist in question to challenge the subpoena in court. This is true even if the journalist is accused of a crime.

19 gus2000 { 04.29.10 at 7:29 am }

I refuse to sit idly by while you crazy people use FUD to tear down the good name of broccoli. VEGGIE UBER ALLES

20 macsdounix { 04.29.10 at 7:43 am }


Haha. Exactly! It’s as though Dan has writing tourette’s.


You hit on the paragraph that was most egregious. Dan is so all over the place that his point is utterly lost. In the first sentence, he sounds like a law-and-order conservative. This is followed by the Fiorina crack. This crack is then followed by a sentence ignoring the rule of law – Dan convicts Goldman Sachs when the company is simply accused of wrongdoing. Finally, Dan finishes up with sarcasm about tax fascists and pot smokers. Huh?
My opinion is that on tech issues, especially involving Apple, Dan KNOWS what he is talking about. Now, I’ve always wondered how he acquired this phenomenal fountain of wise, insightful, insider-ish information. But Dan stands the test of time on Apple tech issues; he is right most of the time.
However, on political issues, Dan does not seem to have a deep pool of knowledge. He just seems to be offering San Francisco-style liberal talking points. Even when I agree with him, Dan makes me cringe every time he brings up politics.

21 ericdano { 04.29.10 at 9:05 am }

I would really ask why the original “finder” of the iPhone, failing to give it to the bar keep, didn’t drive the 20 miles to Apple and return it. I’m sure the reward that Steve would have bestowed would have been more than $5000 sans lawsuit. I mean, you think that you’d at least get rewarded with one of these phones when they come out.

Me? I’d ask to have a lunch or dinner with steve jobs. Or a macro. Either way.

22 akilter { 04.29.10 at 11:24 am }

Great article, as it gets to the heart of the matter: trading on/with others intellectual property. While journalists are expected to provide the latest/greatest info… being seduced into proudly doing it unlawfully is repugnant, and always has been.

As far as the comments that criticize your “political spleen-venting”, I appreciate and look forward to your honest outrage (that I often share) so well articulated. Keep it up, as it differentiates intelligence from a general lack- even among techies. As a matter of fact, collecting and publishing just your comments on social perceptions separately, would do the entire culture (besides technorati) well. Keep it up!

23 PhilipWing { 04.29.10 at 11:26 pm }

I’ll just take getting rid of the regulations that are like HP and Dell partying with Greenpeace, like Steve Jobs wants to avoid (along with the rest of Apple). Thieves like Robin Hood and Jesse James *have* been praised in the past, so Gizmodo’s behavior is not surprising. Amazing how much of the press is so biased nowadays… :( Finally, that GPS in your iPhone is only good enough to give its location within a few houses, so sending in the cops is not a great idea (unless you trigger the Screaming Message alarm, like Columbo did on one show to find a body with a pager).

24 mihomeagent { 04.30.10 at 5:17 am }

Anent Goldman Sachs, yeah, you’d be better off with a Republican governor elected. You know, in contrast to a President bought by Goldman Sachs and other firms he’s now saying he’ll regulate—regulate with their eager assent, as they’ll be safe with their purchased party and president. Pick your side. Goldman Sachs and its Democratic legislators, bought and secure, or an actual market discipline. You can’t seem to decide: You claim the market mantel, but side with the rent-seekers and their party.

25 Imapolicecar { 04.30.10 at 3:27 pm }

I still don’t get how someone who finds an iPhone (apparently looking rather like any other iPhone) suddenly ‘realises’ that this is a new prototype and then sells it to Gizmodo?

Question: How did that person know it was a prototype?

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