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Technology (Apple) Businesses Apple Technology

Better Business Bureau Targets Apple's G5 Ads 595

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the half-truths-in-advertising dept.
deathazre writes "The Council of Better Business Bureaus has suggested Apple Computer withdraw its claims of the world's fastest, and first 64-bit, PC after a complaint by Dell. However, even having one of their ads banned in the U.K. didn't stop them here in the States."
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Better Business Bureau Targets Apple's G5 Ads

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  • by The I Shing (700142) * on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:39AM (#8689202) Journal
    Now, to be fair, Apple's ads said that the G5 was the fastest and first 64-bit PC that wasn't made by a company that isn't Apple.

    Or maybe I'm remembering it wrong.

    Where'd I put my darn bong?

    Oh, here it is, hidden behind my G5.

    Hey, when did I get a G5?

    Who am I, again?
  • Old news (Score:5, Informative)

    by djupedal (584558) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:39AM (#8689204)
    Apple has already stated the ad has run its course and it will be 'mindful' of the request in the future. Meaning we've already made out on that one, better luck next time :)
    • Re:Old news (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:56AM (#8689310)
      Made out?

      Hmm. [marketwatch.com]

      While Apple's iPod sales remain strong -- the company sold 730,000 iPods in its last quarter and had pre-release orders for 100,000 iPod mini music players -- Bachman said the company's G5 sales could turn out to be disappointing for the second quarter in a row.

      For its fiscal first quarter, which ended Dec. 27, Apple shipped 206,000 G5 computers, short of many analysts' estimates. Bachman has estimated that Apple would ship 195,000 G5s in its current quarter.


      Sounds like it didn't work to me. They hardly 'made out' on that one.
      • no pain...no gain (Score:5, Insightful)

        by djupedal (584558) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:09PM (#8689367)
        Whatever gain/loss there was from the ad is water under the bridge. It's too late now, since it can't be taken back. Surely we don't have to remind...

        "Any publicity is good and good publicity is even better"

        This news is just more publicity...and they didn't have to pay a dime to get it in front of you today. I'd call that making out :)
        • by theLOUDroom (556455) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @04:14PM (#8690824)
          Any publicity is good and good publicity is even better"

          Repeating something a million times doesn't make it true!

          Certain publicity is 100% BAD. Like Ford ignition switches busting into flames.
          There's no positive angle to that. Even if you didn't know who Ford was, is that news going to make you want to do business with them? Are you going to think, "Gee, I'd like a car that might randomly burst into flames. I should go check out my nearest Ford dealership!"

      • Marketing is complex (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Llywelyn (531070) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:24PM (#8689442) Homepage

        Trying to see whether an ad campaign has succeeded or failed based on the number of sales versus what was predicted in a given quarter is kind of like trying to infer causal effects for a graph showing correlation between two independently measured variables with no other data--a big mistake.

        Whether an ad succeeds or fails often cannot be measured based on sales in a fluctuating economy with a variable product interest. The critical question is would they have sold 206k G5 computers if they had not run the ad campaign? There is also the corollary question of would they could have sold more with a different ad campaign?

        The first of these questions is nontrivial to answer and requires good, well researched data on why your customers are buying the product. Apple may have that data--you most certainly do not. The latter is almost impossible to infer even with good data on people's purchasing.

        • Trying to see whether an ad campaign has succeeded or failed based on the number of sales versus what was predicted in a given quarter is kind of like trying to infer causal effects for a graph showing correlation between two independently measured variables with no other data--a big mistake.

          In other news. Using a cellphone out of range is kind of like using an undirected radio transmitter somewhere such that the broadcast power over the distance r cubed is less then what's needed to detect the signal a
  • Dell?? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by chunkwhite86 (593696) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:40AM (#8689210)
    Now whay would Dell of all people make this claim? Dell doesn't even offer a 64 bit PC??
    • Re:Dell?? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Epistax (544591) <`epistax' `at' `gmail.com'> on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:48AM (#8689258) Journal
      They offer faster computers though. I don't recall the ad in question when 64 bit was mentioned. The only obvious lie I've hear in an apple ad is the world's "fastest, most powerful" computer.
      • Re:Dell?? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by ScottGant (642590) <scott_gant&sbcglobal,netNOT> on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:58AM (#8689315) Homepage
        I must have missed that story where the 3rd fastest super computer in the world is made up of Dell computers.

        Oh right, silly me!

        But seriously, if Dells are faster, and cheaper...why didn't Va Tech use those instead? They didn't get a deal from Apple you know...they bought them all right through the online Apple store.

        I'm not trying to confront you or anything, I honestly don't know. I hear claims of faster and fastest all the time from people, but when it comes down to people using them in applications, it kinda goes out the window.

        So why didn't VA tech use Dells or simular?
        • Re:Dell?? (Score:3, Interesting)

          by dubiousmike (558126)
          While G5's are 64 bit, OSx isn't a 64 bit OS.

          But they will be in 9 months or a year.

          At that point G5s will scream, but until then they wont.

          I think VA Tech is banking on a big performance increase then.
          • Re:Dell?? (Score:5, Insightful)

            by w3weasel (656289) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:30PM (#8689486) Homepage
            Please know what you are talking about... OSX is and always has been a 64 bit enabled os, by virtue of the availability of the appropriate libraries for use with a 64 bit processor (<cough>BSD</cough>). Why would anyone want a 64 bit os? At least, not untill the average joe needs to move, copy, and edit terabyte sized files.

            what we want, and are starting to get, is 64 bit applications that run on these 64 bit platforms... the OS is just the host, not the workhorse.

            • Re:Dell?? (Score:3, Interesting)

              by dubiousmike (558126)
              but until one can run Photoshop, Final Cut and After Effects as a 64 bit application, 64 bit is moot to most of those who feel Apple is speaking to them.

              While Apple is happy that their server market is doing great, a big part of what they do has been the workstation and the entry level/academic Imac crowds. Apple is showing these ads to convert mind share with these people and that is fine. I am not saying that everyone else ISN'T doing the same kind of marketing grey messages, just that I always liked
          • Re:Dell?? (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Slack3r78 (596506) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:52PM (#8689640) Homepage
            You do realize that moving software to 64 bit just for the sake of 64 bitness is NOT a way to improve speed. In fact, on RISC architechture such as the PPC, a 64 bit binary will generally be slower than a 32 bit binary running identical code.

            The reason for this is the PPC architechture doesn't get any of the boosts such as increased register availablity that x86 does with x86-64 by going 64 bit. The only difference is it can address a larger data set. Unless you're doing something which directly benefits from 64 bitness on a PPC CPU, you'll be better off with a 32 bit binary.
            • Re:Dell?? (Score:4, Informative)

              by karlm (158591) on Sunday March 28, 2004 @01:42AM (#8694064) Homepage
              The only difference is it can address a larger data set. Unless you're doing something which directly benefits from 64 bitness on a PPC CPU, you'll be better off with a 32 bit binary.

              Some readers might interpret this as meaning that 64-bit pointers are the only benefits of a 64-bit CPU. I'd like to point out the advantages of single-instruction (u_)int64_t operations.

              There are a bunch of algorithms that will run twice as fast on 64-bit CPUs and 32-bit CPUs. String comparisons where the string length is known a priori (as in Java or Pascal strings) can be handled 8 bytes at a time rather than 4 at a time. There are also some tricks that can be done with null-terminated strings, but these Multi-precission arithmatic and memory comying routines also benifit greatly from 8 byte words.

              On 64-bit systems, you could also do things like re-writing the O'caml virtual machine so that it internally uses 63-bit integers and doesn't box 32-bit integers.

        • Re:Dell?? (Score:3, Informative)

          by tm2b (42473)
          So why didn't VA tech use Dells or simular?
          Actually, it was because Dell pulled out of the deal at the last moment and Apple swooped in to take it and make some major marketing hay.

          Both were deemed satisfactory, the decision hinged on other factors.

          That's according to insiders from VA Tech IT, at least.
      • Re:Dell?? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Mr. Piddle (567882) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:29PM (#8689477)
        They offer faster computers though.

        You mean less time between breakdowns, right? Dell is the Wal-Mart of computers. For hard day-to-day work, I would seriously prefer something from Apple or Sun before Dell.

        Also, as far as benchmarking goes, P4/Xeon score well in integer performance, but comparatively are middle-of-the-pack in FP performance. So, depending on how the statistics are manipulated, everyone is a winner.

  • Yeah, because Intel's new chips really speed up your internet downloads...

  • Where else? (Score:5, Funny)

    by rickst13 (723165) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:44AM (#8689235)
    Hmmm... In the UK, TV regulators banned the ad. In the US, the Better Business Bureau could ban the ad. Apple should take their business to Russia. In Soviet Russia, the ad bans you.
  • by arashiakari (633150) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:45AM (#8689237) Homepage
    Fastest at what? (No, seriously...)

    Fastest selling? TRUE!

    Fastest falling? Maybe (Looks aerodynamic...)
    Fastest obsolescence?
    Fastest at one particular kind of mathematical operation?
    Fastest mobo latency?
    Fastest design and fab process?
    Fastest repairs? (Easy access panel...)

    Heh. Who the hells knows what any ads are REALLY about these days. Lies, Damn Lies, and Advertising. I'm not a Mac-hater, writing this from my lovely 12" iBook G4.
  • by froschmann (765104) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:45AM (#8689238)
    While truthfulness in advertising is important, this is one of those times where an advertiser made a claim that is kind of hard to prove. A computer that is faster at one thing is not necessarily faster at another. Besides, when you hear "world's best hamburger," you don't automatically believe them solely based on the ads, do you?
  • by jkabbe (631234) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:45AM (#8689243)
    I have never understood.....when companies lie (or make questionable claims) about "fastest" or "first" people get all up-in-arms. But when companies lie about quality or other things people don't care.

    Case in point: I didn't see Apple (or anyone else) complaining that Dell was lying in ads where they implied that the night call center workers were actually in the US.

    And Dell directly implies in their ads that if you're running Unix there are all sorts of negative things that will happen to you that are pretty much not true.

    Whatever. The BBB is just another piece of the marketing machine I guess.
  • by newdamage (753043) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:47AM (#8689248) Homepage Journal
    I was wondering how Apple gets reprimanded for these claims, yet MS goes unheeded with all of its comparative TCO mumbo jumbo, and the fact that "exagerated advertising" is, well, normal. My only guess is that Apple was just too straightforward with its claims (gee, what a novel concept!), and didn't throw in enough technical buzzwords and marketing FUD to confuse everybody.

    Apple's current stance: Our G5's are damn fast, faster than Wintel stuff, and we'll stand by that claim.
    Average Consumer: Really? Wow.
    Dell: Crap.

    Apple's new stance: Our G5's have multi-threaded double buffered optimized 256 bit parallel pipelined 64 bit x-streaming architecture!
    Average consumer:
    Dell: much better.
    • by Jeff DeMaagd (2015) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:14PM (#8689390) Homepage Journal
      The thing that bugs me is that it takes a complaint from a competitor. Haven't individuals been complaining to BBB and other organizations about Apple's ads? The thing is though that Apple HAS been saying "personal computer" all along that I remember so I don't understand the BBB's comments.

      Intel's "wireless everywhere" ads don't mention the need for a base station, not the likelyhood that such a station won't be found on a freaking mountain for that matter, despite what some of the ads imply.
  • by gilesjuk (604902) <giles DOT jones AT zen DOT co DOT uk> on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:47AM (#8689253)
    Do average consumers really care about the speed of a computer? most of them are more likely to be looking at the cost of a computer and what they can do with it.

    Now a business is more likely to consider a fast computer if it increases productivity, but then a business is more likely to be clued up about hardware and not be believing the claims of an advert.

    Ultimately the selection of a computer will be based on if it can do what you want for the right price, there are certain pieces of software that aren't available for non-Windows systems and so speed counts for nothing if you need that software.
  • by skidde (670293) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:53AM (#8689286) Homepage
    A company making misleading claims? That's never happened before. [zdnet.co.uk]
  • by thefinite (563510) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:54AM (#8689294)
    As the Apple Turns [appleturns.com] has an insightful take on the whole thing. I had never heard of the Dell cluster in Buffalo. Bummer for Buffalo.
  • Fact or opinion? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by 91degrees (207121) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @11:58AM (#8689316) Journal
    I have never ever seen a benchmark that can truly give a consistent, unbiased speed comparison between 2 different architectures. Many benchmarks wil run at different speeds if run twice on the same system, and it's always possible to bias a benchmark towards a certain processor simply by choosing the operations that can be performed efficiently by that processor.

    Given this, I tend to consider speed to be opinion rather than factual information. The fact that a factoid looks like a fact, doesn't make it one. Because of this, I don't see it as a great crime to make semi-substantiated claims iabout speed in the advertising.
  • by CountBrass (590228) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:02PM (#8689335)

    And these the same bunch of no-hopers that gave SCO a clean bill of health? Why are we even taking any notice of what they have to say?

  • by josh glaser (748297) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:06PM (#8689355)
    ...is have a "Apple challenge" with the G5 and a P4. Show people both computers, have them use them, and see which one is faster, has the nicer interface, looks cooler, etc. (It would also be a good way for Apple to prove that there really is software on the Mac.) See what people would say is faster - I know what I'd say. Then they could say G5 is the fastest or whatever.

    I'd be the first to admit that Apple was really lagging behind with the G4, but the G5 changed all that. Especcially since, come summer, I'll be able to buy a Dual 3 GHz (crosses fingers).

    Actually, I'm waiting for a G5 Powerbook. No suprise there, but holy crap that'd be fast. (And hot...and big...but fast.) ;-)
  • Fastest FOR WHAT? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by StandardCell (589682) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:06PM (#8689356)
    If you want very specialized fast floating point performance for certain scientific applications, Itanium is where it's at.

    If you want business performance, a multi-processor Opteron trumps them all.

    If you want super fast video and audio encoding, a dual Xeon with hyperthreading will probably kill all of these.

    If you want the fastest mobile processor with good battery life, Centrino is the way to go.

    If you want the fastest computing cluster, you'd probably have to go with UVA's Mac cluster.

    All of the above are probably temporarily in those positions and subject to considerable debate. I hate these "fastest computer ever" statements. Computing is far too dynamic and varied to put all-encompassing labels on. No one platform is ideally suited for all tasks. You make compromises and go from there.
    • by JamieF (16832) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @01:14PM (#8689775) Homepage
      > If you want very specialized fast floating point performance for certain scientific applications, Itanium is where it's at.

      Then why did VT actually go through the trouble of pricing out a cluster and find that G5s had the best price/performance? It's fun to speculate and all, but they actually priced it out and in reality the G5 systems had better price/performance.

      Or were you referring to single-CPU performance?

      >If you want the fastest computing cluster, you'd probably have to go with UVA's Mac cluster.

      I think you meant VT. VT and UVA are arch-rivals.
    • Re:Fastest FOR WHAT? (Score:3, Informative)

      by linuxpng (314861)
      I beg to differ about video and audio encoding. I won't bother wasting time repeating apple's benchmarks in this where it was almost twice as fast as the fastest xeon's encoding a DV stream to MPEG2. I have experienced it myself first hand. The Dual G5 can encode full DV to VBR mpeg2 faster than real time. In contrast, my older G4 took about 3-4x real time.
    • Re:Fastest FOR WHAT? (Score:5, Informative)

      by benwaggoner (513209) <ben.waggoner@NosPam.microsoft.com> on Saturday March 27, 2004 @07:21PM (#8691984) Homepage
      Actually, the 533 MHz Xeon bus means a dual Xeon system is likely memory bound for a lot of video tasks, which are bandwidth-critical, or a mix of bandwidth and CPU bound. Single-processor P4 is a lot faster than Xeon for video decoding, for example, since the bus is 2/3rds faseter. Dual G5 and Dual Opteron provide way more bandwidth per processor than Xeon in dual configurations, and so win for a lot of media processing tasks.
  • Amazing (Score:3, Insightful)

    by 0x0d0a (568518) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:10PM (#8689374) Journal
    I find false marketing to be one of the more upsetting things that companies can do, and I find it a little disturbing that so many Slashdotters seem to feel that it's all right because *it's Apple*. Were it Dell or Compaq or God knows who, people would be up in arms.

    It's pretty obvious that Apple's "fastest computer" claims aren't true and were intended to mislead consumers (even the most generous of readings would admit that they were valid for a very, very limited subset of carefully chosen tests for about a month, far less time than the compaign ran for, and only applied to single-processor computers). There may not be all that much damage caused (heck, the net effect may be positive), but there's little doubt in my mind that Apple was trying to implant fairly bogus information in people's heads.

    The way I see it, even if someone's taking on Microsoft and we want them very much to do well, holding them to a lower standard of integrity (or anything else) is ultimately a losing strategy. Those people will ultimately take advantage of that leeway, and end up producing a worse product/service. If Red Hat puts out a crummy program or makes a decision that negatively impacts me, I will happily complain vocally and publically. Apple deserves to be held to no lesser of a standard.
    • Re:Amazing (Score:5, Insightful)

      by 2nd Post! (213333) <gundbear@pacbe l l .net> on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:20PM (#8689419) Homepage
      It's pretty obvious that Apple's "fastest computer" claims aren't true


      You know, that is *obviously* not true.

      Else the ads wouldn't be an issue.
      Else no one would blink an eye.

      Like the Microsoft ads where the kid starts flying. OBVIOUSLY not true.

      These ads, if OBVIOUSLY untrue, as you claim, then shouldn't be a problem.

      The real problem here, and why Dell is complaining, is that when they were released, they were VERY true.

      It was the most powerful 64bit computer per dollar; that is why Virginia Tech chose the G5 over all other competitors (including Dell) for their supercomputer. No one was cheaper. No one was more powerful.

      Today? No, not THE most powerful, nor the cheapest, offered by an OEM.
  • by MacFury (659201) <me&johnkramlich,com> on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:15PM (#8689398) Homepage
    Everytime I see their ad where the guy says, "Dude! You're getting a Dell!" I wait patiently by my door for the FedEx guy. He hasn't showed up yet! I'm awfully disappointed by their lack of honesty in their advertisements.
  • by mabu (178417) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:16PM (#8689401)
    My favorite completely ridiculous advertising claim these days is Pentax' claim as the Official Digital Camera of the Internet [pentaxusa.com].

    These companies have gone completely nuts.
  • And Microsoft..... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ericdano (113424) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:21PM (#8689426) Homepage
    And Microsoft says it's operating system is safe and secure and the best. I don't see anyone taking issue with that when it's totally not true.....

    Apple makes excellent computers.

  • by TimTheFoolMan (656432) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:21PM (#8689428) Homepage Journal
    At least based on this article in the NY Times [nytimes.com] (with all the usual privacy business that people complain about), it sounds like Dell and Intel may have some explaining to do about HOW they get this incredible performance numbers...

    Tim

  • by OS24Ever (245667) * <trekkie@nomorestars.com> on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:27PM (#8689465) Homepage Journal
    It's pretty funny to me how a computer maker with only 3% of the total computer market can garner so much attention over one little statement.

    As others have pointed out there have been just as many other biased, false, and outright ridiculus claims such as faster inernet thanks to a processor, dancing flourescant colored clean room suits, and all sorts of stuff.

    yet intel's marketing arm, er, Dell decides they need to file a complaint with the BBB over it and they hold the #1 spot for desktops?

    Things that make you go hmmm.
  • Pot/Kettle (Score:3, Informative)

    by KrispyKringle (672903) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:27PM (#8689469)
    A Dell representative said in an e-mail: We "notified NAD because we felt there were some inaccuracies in Apple's advertisement and wanted to act on behalf of consumers in the marketplace who deserve accurate information on which to base their purchase decisions...Essentially, we felt that clarity in the marketplace benefits consumers, and NAD agreed."

    I'm sure that's it. That concern for the consumers' well-being would be why Dell advertises the Celeron 2.4GHz as only suitable for word processing and e-mail. ``Ooh, ma'am, if you're going to be surfing the 'web, you're going to need top-notch power for that kinda number-crunching!''

  • by VojakSvejk (315965) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:47PM (#8689602) Homepage
    I have a G5.

    For my code, it's faster clock-for clock than a Xeon, and (usually) slower clock-for-clock than an opteron. Benchmarks can be made to say just about anything, but I bet the G5 is the fastest thing around for some people running their software.

    To date, Apple has not released a 64-bit OS for the G5, and not only has not announced any intention to do so, but simply avoids admitting this to be the case. Think what you like, but even if you think "64-bit" doesn't mean "a single application can access more than 4 GB of RAM", you certainly have to be perplexed by the sense in which Apple claims to have "broken the 4 GB barrier", given that their latest OS provides your app access to the RAM just the way an Intel-based 32-bit system can.

    Since there is not 64-bit OS for this machine (although Linux is very close), I cannot prove that my G5 has 64-bit hardware, tho I guess I believe it.

    I will now accept my troll-mod, since I have posted this atrocity in an apple.stlashdot.org story.
  • by stealth.c (724419) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:54PM (#8689656)
    I believe a stronger truth-in-advertising law is in order in the US. There are a disturbing number of adverts that tell you shockingly little about the product they're advertising. There is far too much emphasis on image.

    We should disallow companies from advertising based on knowingly bogus research (read: research sponsored by THAT company), and force them to stick to the facts. There should be penalties for lying to people in order to sell a product. I also think political campaigns should be held most strictly to this policy.

    Too many advertisements simply say "use X, and the Y in your life will become that much better!" or "X is the BEST Z product--EVER!" with absolutely no evidence. It's ridiculous.

    And yet Americans don't have a problem with it. They're either too used to being lied to or just don't care. It has to stop. If the G5 isn't the first/fastest 64 bit CPU, well, Apple shouldn't be allowed to say that it is. Isn't there a law against lying to people for money? Don't they call that a SCAM?
  • by Baumi (148744) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:55PM (#8689666) Homepage
    Just wait until the BBB finds out that using a G5 will not blow you right through the wall onto your lawn.
  • by UnknowingFool (672806) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @01:10PM (#8689760)
    Apple claims to have the most powerful, first 64 bit personal computer. That is debatable but they do have numbers to back it up. Now there will always be debate about what numbers to believe and how slanted the benchmarks are . . . yadda, yadda, yadda. The point is that their claim is debatable, but not false. *cough* SCO *cough*

    I don't know about you but is there bigger fish to fry out there when it comes to truth in advertising. If the BB wants to make a statement, why not go after all those diet pill advertisers who claim to help you lose wieght in 30 days without diet or exercise. Or make thousands of dollars working from home in 30 days. To my knowledge, the BB said nothing when movie studios put out raving reviews of their movie by non-existent movie critics.

  • by ITR81 (727140) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @01:55PM (#8690027)
    He's just mad his Dell DJ is getting smoked by the iPod and iPod mini so he attacks an Apple Ad thats no longer in circulation.

    He's also mad becuase HP went with Apple and not them and now HP will have it's own branded iPod.

  • by bfg9000 (726447) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @02:05PM (#8690090) Homepage Journal
    This is about honesty. Just because you can cite examples of other people being dishonest doesn't mean Apple should be allowed to be dishonest as well. That's like saying that since your dad speeds and gets away with it, the police should have no right to pull you over. That's not a justification, that's an excuse. And as Trump says on his show, "I don't. like. excuses."

    If Apple is dishonest, they should not be defended. You're not defending Apple, you're defending lying. If you are an Apple Zealot, you're not unbiased. Take a step back, find someone who is and let them look at the facts without your propaganda slipping in. If you're an Apple zealot, you're not acting in the best interests of society (or even yourself), you're acting in the best interests of Apple. The Better Business Bureau IS unbiased. If Microsoft makes claims like this, they will be censured as well. Overall, the system works. You have no problem when our enemies are caught and punished, but when we are caught and punished, we attack the system. That's what's happening here.

    Everybody here is trying to defend Apple based on technicalities: they said "desktop", not "workstation"; other people lie too; the BBB is a corporate shill; this wouldn't happen if Clinton was in office; there's an anti-Apple conspiracy!

    No matter how much you love Apple Corporation and want to promote their products, it is unethical and irresponsible to break the rules our society is based on. If you actively promote false advertising for your own selfish interests now, you have NO RIGHT to complain about others doing the same thing. What this means is that everybody will race to be the most dishonest, so that the right to complain about others' dishonesty will not matter, because you gain more from your dishonesty than you lose by allowing others' dishonesty. This is NOT where we want society to go.

    If others are dishonest, call the BBB, don't join them in dishonesty. Apple loves their PR. They spend nearly as much on ads and promotions as on R&D. Lying should hurt their reputation. They should be punished for deceit. But there are people here acting as damage control to help Apple lie without being hurt by it. This is evil.

    Dell are the good guys here. Apple is often right on the edge of deception with their ads; this time they went a bit too far and had their wrists slapped for it. I don't care about Dell computers, but I care about honesty in advertising. If Apple noticed Dell blatantly lying and called the BBB, we'd claim it as another example of Apple's glorious belief in truth and goodness. Because that's what we choose to believe. But the sword cuts both ways. It has to. If Apple lies, they should face consequences, just as Dell should when they lie. Someone's mom will see these ads and possibly get scammed into buying the wrong computer based on a lie. That's not good. Apple will lose in the long run, and the customer will lose as well. The best customer service I've ever seen is when an Apple sales guy told me to buy Windows XP because a Mac wouldn't work as well for what I wanted it to do. He was right, and he was honest. And it made me love Apple because they gave a damn about their customers and didn't want to screw me over just to make a quick sale. There are people on this board without that ethic; who cannot see the long-term problem of millions of angry customers who feel they've been lied to, badmouthing Apple to 20 people each and costing Apple many potential future sales. If the Apple guy had pushed me into the wrong solution just because he'd make a commission, I wouldn't have gone on to buy a half-dozen Macs, iPod, software, etc. and helping out on forums doing technical support for Mac newbies. Apple would have lost ME by lying.

    And because they're lying now, they're losing someone else. Someone who cares about the truth is the best salesman you can have on your side. He will push you to be the best you can be when y
    • by Interested Spectator (670344) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @02:51PM (#8690330) Homepage
      I agree with you about "lying" being wrong and companies have a responsibility to be honest about their products. But, from what I read, I agree with Apple's approach. They tried to compare apples with apples by choosing a compiler that could be used on both machines. They used a third party vendor to perform the test. They tried to configure both machines to model "real" world use (keyword "model"). Not some pristine lab condition with techies fine tuning the machines to perform optimaly, but more like my computer here at my house, using it the way I'm using it right now. To me, that kind of test, one that models the real world, is more meaningful than one that you'd have to be in a clean room to duplicate.
  • Workstation v. PC (Score:3, Insightful)

    by nedron (5294) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @02:46PM (#8690310) Homepage
    The complain by Dell and others is more a matter of semantics (as is the add itself).

    Dell claims that the term PC can apply to a workstation as well, rather than simply being used (as in the Apple add) to indicate a personal computer.

    I never hear the word PC and think workstation, so I don't find Apple's ads misleading.

    It's like a color printer add from a couple of years ago that said, "somewhere between black and white is silver, which is just one of the colors between the colors that the color printer can print." Note that they never claim they can print silver, just that it's between two colors they CAN print. Misleading? Not if you actually pay attention to what they're saying.

    That's what marketing is all about.
  • by daveschroeder (516195) * on Saturday March 27, 2004 @03:47PM (#8690612)
    ...Dell claiming that they were the first [macobserver.com] to ship integrated wireless and antennas in a laptop, even though Apple in fact did it more than a year earlier [com.com]?

    Maybe someone should "act on behalf of consumers" to notify them of these "inaccuracies".
  • Fastest, eh? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Swedentom (670978) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @03:55PM (#8690679) Homepage
    How do you measure the speed of a computer?
    Is a 3 GHz P4 with 4 MB RAM faster than a 1.6 GHz G5 with 16 GB RAM? Not likely. So it's not [only] the clock frequency of the CPU that matters.
    A fast computer is, IMHO, one which allows me to perform a certain task in a short time. Think about it - isn't this what _really_ matters? Can I write my essays in a shorter time on a 2 GHz G5 than an old iMac? Not really.

    Comparing Macs and Windows machines, I'd say Macs have always been faster, and will likely be for quite some time. Since the G5 is the fastest Mac, I'd say it's the fastest computer.
    My two cents.
  • by inkswamp (233692) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @06:43PM (#8691729)
    CNet is officially Dell's little bitch.

    The "world's fastest" thing is just marketing hype. Who can't see that? It may or may not be true, but who really cares one way or the other? I never have. Is it really so hard to figure that out? Has there been a rash of people rushing out to get G5s only to find out they were sorely duped? This is such a non-issue.

    Clearly, Dell is run by a bunch of whiners who would rather gripe and complain than come up with their own attention-grabbing ad campaigns. And it's so nice to see CNet letting themselves be used as Dell's little bitch--no surprise there given CNet's notorious history of Apple bashing.

    I'd love to see how many folks at CNet have Dell and/or Microsoft stock. That would probably explain a few things.

  • nitpicking (Score:5, Insightful)

    by zpok (604055) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @07:12PM (#8691919) Homepage
    I think that it'd be a nice waste of time to take some of Dell's claims under consideration and report any false information. After all, they've been "first" in so many things Apple actually beat them to, that it shouldn't be too hard to find something to report.

    I'm not especially vexed by Dell's move, Apple's claim is dubious, although I personally think they make their point: they've got the fastest personal computer you can buy off the shelve. OK, maybe not anymore, next month maybe again, etc etc, who cares, they still make the most pleasing computer afaic, and I don't mind it being fast.

    I am however surprised America reacts to this type of hyperbole. Your presidents get elected on this, all the goods you buy are sold on this, your news is full of it ... Maybe we should be pleased that there's at least some regulation in place.

    Me, I'm still waiting for the "I can't believe it's not Windows" campaign for Linux ;-)

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