Apple Rumors Gone Amok

I’ve been an iPod-listening, iPhone-talking, iMac-computing, Macbook-toting Apple fan since 1986 when I first used AppleWorks on a Apple IIe. I’ve stood behind the platform through thick and thin and my t-shirt collection proves it. However, one aspect of the Apple culture to which I refuse to subscribe is rumors and conjecture.

The iSlate (or is it now iTablet again?) frenzy has me particularly annoyed and Gawker’s recent “scavenger hunt” for clues about the mythical new Apple device makes me want to zap their PRAM with extreme prejudice. I’m puzzled as to what purpose knowing about potential Apple’s products a few weeks early could serve? Asking people to risk their jobs to serve the Apple paparazzi machine is completely irresponsible.

I’m also concerned that the rumor mongering is expanding at an exponential level. Theorizing what Apple could or should come up with is great. For an awesome retrospective of such products check out Appledesign: The Work of the Apple Industrial Design Group. The line between fictional Apple announcements and rumors is thin. In 2010, with image and video editing tools, fans can create a fictional Apple product, report it as a rumor, and be taken seriously. Actual true, verifiable Apple news a few weeks before a suspected product announcement grinds to a halt. Personally, I think TheAppleBlog has done a good job or steering clear of the more fanciful theories out there and focusing on what is more plausible and real.

My friends at Apple have some interesting takes on the rumor frenzy which I find fascinating. As TheAppleBlog already reported, some leaks are intentional. The more rumors spread and mutate, the less likely the “true” leak is recognized. With so many different images of what the Tablet could be, nobody is 100 percent sure of what it actually is. More fascinating is that sometimes these fan visualizations of what could be are viewed by Apple employees and could be incorporated into later products. The rumors could serve as prototypes of the next generation.

So is that why everyone is into rumors? To improve Apple design? I suspect for most it’s just impatience. Everyone’s so excited for “one more thing,” they’re willing to risk it all for a glimpse. And this is different than paparazzi taking pictures of celebrities walking their dogs how?

Wait until Christmas morning to open the presents and stop looking in the closet to see where Mom stashed the Hanukkah goodies.

This is just one writer’s opinion on the lack of value in rumors. What’s yours?