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back to article Newly-homeless kids get free iPod

Apple handed out 100 iPod Nanos to kids who lost their homes in the recent Californian fires, though without homes or computers it's not clear how they'll manage to get any music onto them. Local resident Steve Boyack emailed Steve Jobs and asked if he could send over a few iPods for the teenagers, having seen how various groups …

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Jobs Halo

I know this is el reg, but...

why so cynical about a good news story? And you wonder why Steve won't let you join in on any raindeer games!

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Proper wee consumers

<quote>"iPods are an accessory most kids like and can't live without.”</quote>

Yeah life would just not be worth living without those JobsPod. And we wonder whats going wrong with the world when these are the values we are positively encouraging.

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Paris Hilton

omg

Talk about a slap in the face; First their house burns down, then they get handed a peice of sh*t.

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Coat

Re: omg

ummm... you have *heard* of an iPod, right?

It may be many things (seed of the Devil, etc) but a piece of sh*t it most definitely isn't.

My $0,02

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No music

Simple, just ask Microsoft for PCs.

What's that you say.. no electricity? No Internet?

Not the point. This guy thinks the kids need iPods and Apple does too.

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Coat

Slight problem...

...if they have no home, how will they charge them?

just a thought.

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Its...

The thought that counts i guess!

That said its a kind gesture from the folks at Apple. Why must eveyone be so cynical about it? I mean they could have just done nothing and ignored it. They made a gesture that shows that they are in part human. People who are saying "its not going to make up for loosing there house" or "Yeah life would just not be worth living without those JobsPod. And we wonder whats going wrong with the world when these are the values we are positively encouraging."

You are all clearly missing the piont! That or you expected Jobs to front up 100 houses! They arent using it as some mass ad campaing, they arent poking there nose in they did a kind gesture for a bunch of kids who must be feeling pretty down! Yeah you have no house and life is a bit sh*t at least someone has done something kind for them!

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Flame

Wow

I do believe most of the houses that burned in California were not in neighboorhoods like Compton.

"Kari said an iPod was not at the top of her list of worries, but it was nice to get one.

“A lot of people were excited about it. It was nicer than the one I lost (in the fire),” she said. Kari said her twin sister, Kimi, also received one. "

It was nicer than the one I already had!?!?!?! I'm gonna start a charity to give Steve Jobs sandwiches. Sammies4Jobs.org. Why would you waste money giving iPods to people who have homeowners insurance and can probably buy their own iPod if needed.

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@Dan Collett

Why? Because it is Apple and this The Register. The Register's hacks are heavily influenced by the Dvorak school of IT 'journalism'. This school of thought works on the basic premise that if you need page views you slag off Apple. The more unfair the story is, the further away from the truth it is and the more snark you fill it with the bigger the resultant increase in hits.

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Re: Re: omg

Daniel is right, an iPod isn't a piece of shit, is is a perfectly legitimate paper weight. As an added bonus you don't need to worry about battery life if you never plan to turn it on.

But yeah I can only think of about 6000 things at or below that price which I have rather than an iPod. Like a nice pair of slacks. Or a new Wiha screwdriver set. Or a couple pints...

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Pirate

The thought. Yes. That.

@Dan

Indeed, the thought does count. It would seem that precious little thought was put into this. Merry Saint Nick's day.

It's like that twat Gates funding a cure for malaria, yet a fraction of what they've spent could have bought mosquito nets for everyone affected.

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Flame

Wow again

no homes?... yet... homeowners insurance, etc, build new home... move in. They will have a home, it may take a few months to get there... maybe even a couple of years, but they will probably rent a place until then and it won't be a problem to charge them up or get that new laptop to upload songs to it from their newly acquired CDs/downloads.

stop acting like the people that live in the half million dollar homes are poor. sheesh. (yes, I know it's California and half million dollar homes are common, but still)

it might have been a godsend for some of them if they were having issues with ARM mortgages in this crappy sub prime economy. insurance pays off most, if not all, of the mortgage and they go on with their lives without the nasty scar on their credit. and if they weren't hard up on the mortgage... read the first paragraph of this post.

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Wake up and smell the reality

I will also echo the point that the homes that burned in S. California in this fire and virtually every other one in the past are worth millions. Rich people live in the canyon lands, not the needy. These kids will be stealing music from the pirate bay for their free iPods in a European hotel during Christmas while most inner-city teens will probably just get a beating and carton of cigarettes.

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Let's be realisitic

Apple isn't going to give away iMacs - there's small enough margin there already.

But an iPod is more-or-less locked into iTunes, and iTunes is hugely profitable for Apple. So there's 100 kids out in California who got "free" iPods after the fire; who live(d) in high-income neighborhoods, and go to (or will go back to) schools with thousands of other high-income kids; and who most likely have "warm fuzzy" feelings for Apple and iPods now. they're going to tell their friends how great the iPod is.

And out of this "humanitarian" gesture, Apple can reasonably expect to sell another thousand iPods, and a hundred thousand tracks from iTunes.

It's a good investment. And it's tax-deductible. Good thinking.

Yes, I'm cynical. I'm over 50, and I believe in the charity of large corporations about as much as I believe in the Easter Bunny. there's good reason for that; I've seen what goes on behind the scenes in large corporations before they commit to "charitable" philanthropy.

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Coat

@timmy

"These kids will be stealing music from the pirate bay for their free iPods in a European hotel during Christmas while most inner-city teens will probably just get a beating and carton of cigarettes."

Those kids are lucky we just got mildly scolded, and sent to bed without cigs.

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Coat

@ Rich

"It's like that twat Gates funding a cure for malaria, yet a fraction of what they've spent could have bought mosquito nets for everyone affected."

Love it.

Why teach a man to fish when you can send him to the chippie for a few quid?

Classic!

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Jobs Halo

my memory must be failing me

Odd, I don't remember any teens in New Orleans getting iPods.

Ah, of course, Apple must've just given them out hush-hush, without the media fanfare.

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Happy

Re: Let's be realisitic

Locked in? I don't think so. Of all the people I know that have iPods, very little use the iTunes store, and the ones that do I convert very quickly. Winamp I find is more effective for managing my pod than iTunes itself :) iPods are excellent though, I fully plan to get a classic 160gb, as my 60GB's lockswitch is busted and I voided my warranty :/ I just find that their aesthetic, build quality and general functionality are great. Oh for FLAC, custom metatag sorting and a tonne of other crap. But a man can dream, eh :]

It was nice of them to give the iPods away though, publicity stunt or not.

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Jobs Horns

@Daniel

I have an iPod nano 4gb, I've played more solitaire on it than music! the lock-in to iTunes just makes it a pain in the arse to use, you can't simply drag'n'drop files onto the player with a plain file browser (or even CLI) and have the unit happily read them, unlike my two iRiver H140's which you can, and I do, regularly for the past 3+ years.

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Dead Vulture

A new rule for Reg Club

11: No Good deed goes Unpunnished.... By El Reg.

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Apple

Good on them. The fact they're not capitalising on this give away proves it's just a bit of good will. Plus, a good way of securing loyal Apple customers for generations as an aside...! Either way, good for Apple - genuine good will is hard to come by these days.

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Apple = Drug dealers

First one free, get them hooked.

@Maksim Rukov, which is why there were not any free iPods in New Orleans, the kids there wouldn't be able to afford return visits.

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Waste of charity

With the amount of money 100 iPods cost, Apple could have rebuilt every house in California, and they would still have enough money left over to give those 100 kids a Creative Zen each.

Genuine goodwill? In the accounting sense of 'goodwill', maybe, but certainly not in the spiritual sense.

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Anonymous Coward

Not-so-good Samaritan

That's what, about $15,000, right? And what's Apple's turnover?? That's like the Good Samaritan bandaging the man-from-Jerusalem's wounds, carrying him on a donkey to an inn, and then leaving him to pick up the tab!

That was gonna be my 2 eurocents, but just gave them to the beggar in the street in an act of immense philanthropy.

ps. just searched for apple turnover on google - didn't get what i wanted, but gonna have a nice dinner tonight!

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Jobs Horns

I just wonder...

if the reason Apple weren't so keen to publicise what they've done is that there might be some pressure on them to do things like this for other kids in the world (yes, even outside California) for whom something worse than having to move into a temporary large house in a rich area rather than their usual larger house in a rich area.

Offhand I struggle to think of any kids who may have had a worse experience than that. Perhaps watching your entire village being raped and pillaged might be slightly worse. Or indeed being sent to work in a factory in China making western MP3 playing devices.

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Ian
Thumb Up

Further breaking news...

The RIAA have also decided to drop all criminal procedings against any of the newly homeless kids. An RIAA spokesperson has re-iterated, that "This has nothing to do with the fact, that all evidence has been destroyed, but was done in the name of Christmas spirit".

Ian.

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Anonymous Coward

@Rich

"It's like that twat Gates funding a cure for malaria, yet a fraction of what they've spent could have bought mosquito nets for everyone affected."

Perhaps you should learn a bit about the situation before you open your big yap. Off-topic, yes - but - the issue with malaria is that you can't physically GET mosquito nets to everyone; the infrastructure requirement is ENORMOUS compared to people going to a central location to get treatment.

In addition, the majority of malaria victims are children, who naturally tend to roll around and end up sticking out of the mosquito net at some point. These kids aren't sleeping in big-ass feather beds in their own rooms, you know.

So even if you could physically GET nets to everyone, it wouldn't be nearly as effective as a vaccine or cure.

And finally, Mr Barnett's use of the 'teach a man to fish' analogy is bitterly ironic, as one would *think* that donating mosquito nets from now 'til infinity is a bit less of an effective and permanent solution than finding a way to vaccinate/cure the population and thus permanently eradicate the disease in a generation or so.

But, perhaps I am mistaken. Bill Gates is a very very bad, bad man.

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Law
Paris Hilton

@ John Williams

"The fact they're not capitalising on this give away proves it's just a bit of good will"

Erm.............. really? lol... I would have thought it was just cheap publicity really.....

I think that Apple should publish the names and pictures of 10 early iPhone adopters on their website with this story, and say it couldn't have been done without these guys help.... if they hadn't paid the unbelievably inflated price tag on release day, none of this would have been possible. ;)

I miss the Paris angles... what does she listen to music on, and use as her phone now?

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Anonymous Coward

Ummm... @David Wiernicki

"but - the issue with malaria is that you can't physically GET mosquito nets to everyone; the infrastructure requirement is ENORMOUS compared to people going to a central location to get treatment."

Can't they just pick their free mozzie net up at this central location?

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Mozzy nets

[the issue with malaria is that you can't physically GET mosquito nets to everyone]

So how do you propose to get vaccines and the skilled ppl to administer them to folk if you can't get mozzy nets there?

I think the point is that whilst scientists burn through millions of dollars of money trying to make a name for themselves...errr I mean develop a vaccine for malaria nearly 3000 people a *day* die in the mean time.

It;s like having a tidal wave hit the Eastern Sea board wiping out all the infrastructure, cholera et al running rampant and the rest of the world saying "don't worry, we're not going to send you the help we've got right now, but in 10 years time we might have figured out how to put the sea back where it was. All the best in the mean time"

People need help *now* not some indeterminate time in the future. If help is iPods or mozzy nets then so be it, but sooner is generally preferred to later.

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Flame

there's an old American saying that applies here:

"Them that has, gets."

Like millionaire stars getting high end electronic gizmos free in their Oscar night gift packs, that would cost the rest of us thousands of dollars. Or high end cars or custom bikes given to rich musicians or other famous folk-the same folk who would have already bought such a thing had they ever wanted one-so it's an expensive and totally wasted gesture.

Or people using influence and fame to get free necessities of life like meals all the time, when they never, ever need the charity. Or tax breaks so that the seven figures pouring in annually and being saved in the "scorecard" bank account don't get lowered to the high six figures.

If anything, why not have Negroponte give a few of his OLPC's out, then they can be real-world tested in the blasted burnt-mall wasteland of Southern CA?

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Happy

Apple did a good thing

Hi guys! I am one of those kids who lost their half million dollar home (more like 3 million lol! whatever.) and I think that what Apple did is good and deserves support, not hate. There is too much hate in this world already so why hate the good things people do? Make love, not war right, lol! I really appreceate the ipod I got because I did lose EVERYTHING, like I'm literally homeless. We had to leave everything behind when we evacuated, so I had nothing except for the ones on my back! My mom and I went to the store today, but theres no way I can replace my entire wardrobe in one day, plus where are we going to put it all I don't even have a house yet. Even with insurance, its not like I can just point to a house and say "I want that one" and that's it! We have to stay in a hotel while my parents figure out what were going to do next. There lots of things that money can't replace, like the antique (or vintage?) bear I got from my grandma when she was a little girl, and this really beautiful painting from my first trip to Paris that I had since I was like 5 (I'm almost 17 now lol), even all my mom's jewelry that were like herlooms and my dad's guitar collection and so many other things. The point is not that the ipod is supposed to replace all that because that's impossible, but its a gesture that says "we're sorry about what happened and we care." I got nothing but support from friends (duh) but even complete strangers who don't even know me, but because their good people. I lost my computer (duh), so I'm writing this on a friends in my hotel room. At least having an ipod helps pass time, and my friend has a lot of cool music I didn't know she even had lol! (and for those of you who say I'm "stealing" music I'm not, she gave me her password so I could listen to her music before I bought my own).

Sorry this is so long but I just wanted to say Apple rocks and because of their kind gesture, I will always support their company. OK, thats it. Thanks guys!

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Go

@ Lizzie MacAyre

Oh I had started a nice big rant against the "omg i lost my antique teddybear and a parisian painting lol" post, when I realised that this is quite obviously a joke post. Actually, it is pretty well done so hats off to you, 50-year-old-Norfolk-bloke-with-a-beerbelly-and-a-fag-in-his-mouth-pretending-to-be-a-17-year-old-Californian-"Ayre"head.

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Coat

@ AC @ Lizzie

same here... until I saw your post... hardy har har.

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