“I’m not getting an iPad” says tech writer – “and neither should you”

We’re loving this piece written by Cory Doctorow of BoingBoing explaining why he’s not going to be queuing up in line for an iPad tomorrow.

Posted up on Apple fanboy #1 site Gizmodo (who were quick to add disclaimers in the intro), it’s an intelligent and well reasoned counterpoint to the incessant iHype, and we found ourselves nodding in agreement throughout most of it.

It’s a fairly lengthy piece, but well worth reading.

Here’s a few snippets :

Incumbents made bad revolutionaries
…So what does Marvel do to “enhance” its comics? They take away the right to give, sell or loan your comics. What an improvement. Way to take the joyous, marvellous sharing and bonding experience of comic reading and turn it into a passive, lonely undertaking that isolates, rather than unites. Nice one, Misney.

Wal-Martization of the software channel
And let’s look at the iStore. For a company whose CEO professes a hatred of DRM, Apple sure has made DRM its alpha and omega. Having gotten into business with the two industries that most believe that you shouldn’t be able to modify your hardware, load your own software on it, write software for it, override instructions given to it by the mothership (the entertainment industry and the phone companies), Apple has defined its business around these principles. It uses DRM to control what can run on your devices, which means that Apple’s customers can’t take their “iContent” with them to competing devices, and Apple developers can’t sell on their own terms.

The iStore lock-in doesn’t make life better for Apple’s customers or Apple’s developers. As an adult, I want to be able to choose whose stuff I buy and whom I trust to evaluate that stuff. I don’t want my universe of apps constrained to the stuff that the Cupertino Politburo decides to allow for its platform. And as a copyright holder and creator, I don’t want a single, Wal-Mart-like channel that controls access to my audience and dictates what is and is not acceptable material for me to create. The last time I posted about this, we got a string of apologies for Apple’s abusive contractual terms for developers, but the best one was, “Did you think that access to a platform where you can make a fortune would come without strings attached?” I read it in Don Corleone’s voice and it sounded just right. Of course I believe in a market where competition can take place without bending my knee to a company that has erected a drawbridge between me and my customers!

Gadgets come and gadgets go
The iPad you buy today will be e-waste in a year or two (less, if you decide not to pay to have the battery changed for you). The real issue isn’t the capabilities of the piece of plastic you unwrap today, but the technical and social infrastructure that accompanies it.
If you want to live in the creative universe where anyone with a cool idea can make it and give it to you to run on your hardware, the iPad isn’t for you.
If you want to live in the fair world where you get to keep (or give away) the stuff you buy, the iPad isn’t for you.
If you want to write code for a platform where the only thing that determines whether you’re going to succeed with it is whether your audience loves it, the iPad isn’t for you.

Read the full story here:  [Gizmodo]

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