Macworld Online's international readers have also written to us to express their dismay at Apple’s decision to pull out of Apple Expo 2000. Here's a representative sample.
1) As an avid Macintosh user here in the US, I find it utterly incomprehensible as to why the company management would thumb their noses at the UK's only Mac trade "happening".
It would seem that they are trying damned hard to shoot themselves in the foot, not only by scorning the Mac faithful support which has helped keep them solvent through the last few years, but in sacrificing the opportunity to woo new users with a convincing show of hardware and corporate dynamics. The same guy who has been bathing - justifiably, I feel - in the wave of euphoria for the great turn-around that Apple Computer has achieved, must also be given all the credit for this screw up. Bad one Steve!
- Ted Allebone.
2) It really was saddening to hear what happened to our Mac colleagues in the UK. We cannot imagine why Apple would do this, when it has everything going for it over the past year. Doesn't Apple realize what this does to the loyalty of it's brand followers, who have stuck by it through thick and thin?
Even here in a very small but growing market, the Philippines - an English speaking country - we look forward all year to an enjoyable mini Apple-sponsored Graphic-Expo show, which has brought us users; private, corporate and artistic, together to rub shoulders with some of the best, and most helpful people from Apple Asia, Adobe and other Mac suppliers and developers. After the show this year, my clients invariably bought the latest G3 Macs; one client even has three G3 400's and one G3 Server as a result.
Such a decision would seem to be made more by an individual, somewhat paranoid or of a "prima donna" mentality; certainly not by a vibrant and common-sense business plan group. It's just what Bill Gates would want Apple to do: commit suicide!
Let's hope that a barrage of user protest will get Apple to turn around on its decision.
Treating developers, exhibitors and users like this will have strong repercussions, just when the Mac world was so hopeful, and exhilarated, by the increased support and growing choice of software and peripherals.
Is Apple going to let the World down? Is this being "user friendly"? We strongly support our third-party developers and their protest as well. We need them just as much as our Macs, and if weren't for them, we wouldn't use Mac.
- Tom W. Uhing, pre-press consultant, Antipolo City, Philippines
3) I teach and am surprised and disappointed that Apple has pulled out of the Apple show next year. Education in the UK is in a big state of flux with computers, and Apple had a chance to enhance its position within the educational community.
-Tim Shepherd, Singapore
4) I have been with the Apple soap opera far too long. I am so tired of working with others to keep the Mac community and message alive from blunder to blunder. As a loyal customer, I have had to tolerate everything from the company ignoring our collective input to down and out hostile treatment.
I have been asking my self, why do I offer Apple my loyalty in the first place? In the beginning the company had a product that was unique, innovate, and actually changed my ability to express myself and, as a designer, to make a living. That initial attraction was so strong it has kept me loyal through the entire personal computer revolution - even during Apple's darkest years when it did not deserve my loyalty. I had a strong, and sometimes irrational, bias for the Macintosh platform. I, like so many others, supported Apple on the good products and rationalized the bad ones - and let's face it there were plenty of those. I am now asking myself: “Was my lack of objectivity good for me or Apple, or did it enable and strengthen the arrogance and contempt we still see today?”
So many of us tired faithful have sat back in wonder at the companies brilliant comeback. Along with a stronger company we are seeing mistakes from the past manifest themselves again. How many customers have been the victim of Apple's hostile treatment? How many vendors and partners over the years have bought into Apple's message, only to have them back out when it changed its mind and lost millions? How many times have communities sprouted up over Apple technologies? Too many I say.
From now on, I am no longer an Apple yes man, lackey or apologist. Apple now has creditable competition, and will have to earn my dollars and business - no more free lunch from me. I am sick and tired of carrying Apple, they can carry me from now on, or lose my business. This latest PR debacle in the UK is unacceptable to me as a customer, and unfair to the vendors that I depend on.
Apple can make its choices and as far as I am concerned bear the full consequences of those choices. I will get the best products in the market, whatever they are, and Apple will get the feedback it needs to improve.
I have grown up and lost religion, and it is just what Apple needs.
- Scott Ketterer, Tektronix, Inc
5) Oops, Apple stood on some more sensitive toes. Owning a Mac in this 'Windoze' world is tough enough. Apple should take advantage of all the incredible talent and energy just waiting to express its love for the Macintosh experience. Apple: Don't plan new shows if it's not cost-effective, but don't disappoint the Mac community by cancelling prior commitments.
- Stefan Podgrabinski, OM Corporation, Toronto
6) Apple has an old tendency to shoot itself in the foot. Pulling out of this expo seems to be a reversion to type. Should we celebrate that Apple now only does this occasionally, or be outraged that they still have not learned to do it at all? We'd think that the G4 prices fiasco would have been enough regression for one time period. Apparently not.
Rowan Conrad, USA
7) Apple seems to think that the USA represents the whole world! Damn wrong they are!! What happens in the UK is just another evidence that the Apple managers in Cupertino just don't give a ... about us European users. In Germany it is even worse - Apple has a market share of 3 per cent - and these idiots killed the Macworld Expo in Germany too. Now I heard that they won't even come to the world's biggest computer expo - the "Cebit 2000" in Germany! Oh no, people this will not increase market share in Germany!
This message goes out to all these arrogant managers in the Apple USA Headquarters (Steve Jobs included). You Suck!
I never thought I would say this sentence again: "I love my Mac, but I hate Apple!"
- An angry German Mac Supporter!
8) Is Apple coming back in the John Sculley's (former CEOdecade?
Is it CRAZY to cancel his partecipation in Apple Expo 2000?
Does it want to "freeze" the European customer?
Is it choosing another STUPID highway?
I'm REALLY surprised!
This is really an incredible decision; a cloudy day for Apple!
- Roberto Ballabeni, Italy