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back to article Apple iPhone forums gripped by deleted thread paranoia

The iPhone 4 antenna debacle has upped the paranoia levels in Apple's support forums as moderators reportedly nix any mention of Consumer Reports' volte face on the talking light slab. Consumer Reports had previously given its blessing to the iPhone 4, but did a U-turn yesterday. The news started to spread like wildfire through …

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Thumb Up

sounds fun

"level 5 users" reporting newbies for minor infractions of the T&Cs?

Sounds exhilarating. Do I have to wear my own swastika or will they send me one?

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FAIL

"not helping the situation"

Of course, when you leave the definition of "helping" and "situation" to fanbois...

Shifting the responsibility from the corporate to the cheerleaders doesn't mitigate Apple's liability at all. Apple owns the forums, Apple maintains the forums. Apple is therefore responsible for use and abuse of the forums -- and that extends to the abuse of delete recommendations as well.

Regardless of the reason for the majority of deletions, it only takes one arbitrary or ill-meaning deletion to cross the line from content management to censorship -- and regardless of your personal desensitization to it, censorship is always news.

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Jobs Horns

Is it just me...

or does the level 3,4 and 5 users guff sound like Apple have been taking advice from the Scientologist on how to organise thier followers?

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Big Brother

Re: Apple Scientologits... err.. Scientologists

It would appear that another page is lifted from the (copyright/confidential/secret/insane) playbook of another hopelessly-happy and addicted-to-white-everything religion.

Perhaps there was some cross-pollination... maybe that's why the US commercials are getting better (yes, both companies... err.. churches). Lord knows they seem to have the same secrecy management consultants.

Appears OT-4 throught OT-5 are standard soldiers in the coming Jih... Holy War against Misinformation, eh?

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Big Brother

When you get to Level 5...

...the decoration are free

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FAIL

RE: Yes Men

You miss the point entirely. It's a support forum. You go there with problems and look for answers.

If other users (who are looking for answers) don't find your post useful then it'll get downvoted.

Pointless posts, posts that just say "me too", spam or abuse get downvoted pretty quickly.

(You may also note that a previous poster indicated that the stuff Apple allegedly deleted was still available when he looked)

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Go

So ...

... is the Sacred J a stinking damn liar, and idiot who is easily led by the ring in his nose or just another corporate crook trying to screw the fans out of their cash any way he can?

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So ...

Yes.

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Jobs Horns

So...

Any reason why he can't be both?

(I bet this one gets down-voted. But the fanbois do seem remarkably quiet currently, don't they?)

GJC

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Funny you should say that but.............

.............the same thought had recently struck me. Normally in this type of thread where Applebois versus the rest is the "game" the upvote/downvote ratio reflects substantial activity from both parties. Currently what we apparently are seeing is a degree of "shyness" from one of the aforementioned parties. Interesting.

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Headmaster

RE: Funny you should say that but.............

Maybe they're too grown up to get involved in arguments that are meaningless and pointless.

I mean who actually has got involved in a real-life "I can piss higher than you can" contest? Not many of us, we're all too grown up. Happens all the time on El Reg's forums though, doesn't it?

If the Apple fanbois have dropped the pre-teen mentality that the bashers seem to favour so much then maybe you should move onto something else?

(Microsoft seem like a nice easy target)

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Anonymous Coward

the wonders of apple...

"The rules are clearly spelled out in the T&C's and a lot of posted get deleted every day as Level 3, 4 and 5 users clear out the whines, the trash and the incorrect."

Why catch the dirt for deleting posts that you don't like yourself when you have an army of 'it works for me' fanboys to do it for you....

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Anonymous Coward

The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

Oh no cult tries to hide truth from decibels .. I´m so shocked....

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

Heh heh. That took me a second to work out.

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Hey whiners ....

Its a technical support forum for solving problems , not Facebook. Thats why the support forum is so successful at solving things - it doesn't allow childish kiddies trying to start flame wars or all the other things that are wrong with other Forums. Its not for "debate" - its for solving technical support problems.Nobody cares about Mr Annoyed from Tunbride Wells saying how his life has been affected. I just couldn't give a stuff nor could anyone else Its not 'social engineering' but sticking to the point, something that people somehow find difficult to do these days.If you want to whine and complain about having a problem that many oterhs do, go elsewhere where people actually care about your opinions, as your whining will not actually solve the problem..

Repeated posting ranting at other users solves nothing and 99.99% of the deleted posts are just that - utterly pointless and completely unhelpful.

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Stop

In order to solve a problem...

...you have to first admit that the problem exists. So when a company adamantly denies that a problem exists, a reasonable and responsible reaction is to provide evidence supporting the existence of the problem.

Apple has repeatedly tried to deny this problem and to cast it as something other than what it is. So posting about it, referencing new supporting evidence has a very helpful point. Complaining about people using forums in a slightly different way than you want them to is pointless and completely unhelpful. Removing their posts because you don't like what they said is censorship.

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Jobs Horns

flamewars?

You spend the best part of £500 on a phone and it's so badly designed that you have to hold it in a special way or it doesn't work, leaving you with the choice of paying a further £25 for a rubber band or going without and when you complain on the manufacturers website your post is deleted as a useless whine or a shot in a flamewar?

I'm SO glad I sold all my Macs.

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Go

The Sacred J ...

... has you by the balls huh sonny. And mommy's pockerbook foots the bill.

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@ Graham 25

"If you want to... complain about having a problem that many oterhs do, go elsewhere"

Is that the standard Apple support process?

"I'm sorry, sir, but as another person has already reported an identical problem, your specific complaint is none of our concern. Please go elsewhere."

Silly me - I didn't realise that if someone else already has the same problem as you, your own problem immediately become invalid.

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FAIL

RE: @ Graham 25

"Silly me - I didn't realise that if someone else already has the same problem as you, your own problem immediately become invalid."

Silly you indeed. Have you ever wondered why there is only one post per problem? The rest get amalagamated together. Then if someone adds something that doesn't clarify the problem or doesn't provide a potential solution then they're not adding anything useful are they? So their post gets downvoted and eventually removed.

The problems don't disappear from the forums but if 200 people start new threads, it'll rapidly be turned into just one thread...

That sounds like a pretty good way to save users the hassle of wading through hundreds of "me too" posts before finding a handful of answers, any (or none) of which may be correct.

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Thumb Up

RE: Hey whiners ....

I like the way you've been rapidly downvoted - for telling the truth.

Sounds to me a bit like the Gallileo claiming the world might be round!

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Jobs Horns

FCC non-compliance may cause RECALL

Apple is obviously applying ICrap 4 App principles to the Apple forums. It will rebound against Apple. Obviously they don't accept that honesty id the best policy. All the censorship is achieving is to exacerbate the problem as people will figure that Apple is trying to hifr something.

Consumer Reports carries a lot of weight in the US, far more than Which? in the UK, and CR's negative reports is headline news all over the US this morning. Apple shares were down over 3% so the great unwashed public knows what is happening.

Toyota found out, at great expense, cheating the American public can cost big time.

Now it's Job's turn. Every handset requires FCC type-approval and undoubtedly the Radio Frequency defects are likely to take so long to recalculate and issue a patch is because fiddling with such equipment requires approval by the FCC.

Obviously the manufactured product defects can't be properly remedied, unless free bumpers are handed out, without a recall. Then they have to comply with all the other regulatory authorities in other parts of the world.

Hopefully one of these government agencies will require ALL the defects be fixed.

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This won't happen

The FCC have already OK'ed it, hence it's available for sale.

The 3% drop in share price is massive and overstated, this will pop back and more when they announce their earnings.

A drop in market cap by $5 billion? You have got to be kidding.

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Go

Fox Charlie Charlie ...

... has no criteria for poorly operating antenna systems on the receiving end. You can home build the poorest receiver you want and the FCC will say nothing. The moment you build a transmitter that has a too high spurious, out-of-band, transmission you have problems. But the problem here is receive sensitivity which has nothing to do with transmit legality.

Under your logic every battery powered device would be in violation every time the batteyr ran down and receive ability was lowered. That's NOT an FCC concern.

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Jobs Horns

Well, maybe....

I'd say Apple shares were *way* over-valued already by any sane financial measurements, so I wouldn't necessarily bet on today's drops being reversed.

GJC

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Boffin

So you can't-

actually talk TO people on the i4?

It's worse than I thought...

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FAIL

Not quite...

"Toyota found out, at great expense, cheating the American public can cost big time."

Only if you are a foreign company. If you are an American company you are generally protected by the American media. (look at the Xbox RROD Debacle for further proof - Almost all Xbox owners have willingly bought replacements).

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Anonymous Coward

Muddled though the post is....

I think the suggestion was that a physical modification to the handset antenna/transmitter/receiver setup (giving iPhone4a) would need FCC approval.

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Flame

Apple's rules of existence

Rule #1 - Apple is always right.

Rule #2 - If Apple is ever found to be wrong, see rule #1.

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FAIL

RE: Apple's rules of existence

You obviously didn't read their forum rules. If you did then you'd realise that it's a very sensible way to run a support forum.

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WTF?

Eh? Who?

OK, who are 'Consumer Reports' and why should I care what they say?

Never heard of them before.

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Coat

Conspiracy theories!

This post has been deleted by a moderator

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Happy

Re:Conspiracy theories!

Tee hee hee!

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Pint

I've always wondered...

..given some of the rabid fanboi flames that are accepted, just what it takes for Ms Bee to bring down the banhammer on a comment.

All hail the Moderatrix!

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Joke

Free debate?

The fact that our beloved Moderatrix has a high threshold is something we should welcome IMHO. Much more fun all round, nudge nudge drool.!

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Free debate?

Silence.

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Funny thing

Funny thing is, I went to an Apple store the other day, because I had to replace the dead graphics card in my "obsolete" ("early 2008") Mac Pro. A story in itself, suffice it to say I dodged their blather about needing a “powerful card,” and how the cheapest card ($150 for what would sell for $30 in the PC world) would only work in the “newest” (2009) Mac, so I would need at least their next card, a nearly 2 year old technology POS they sell for $350, or one of their last two offerings, one at $450, or an $1800 Quadro. The “cheap” one works just fine, thank you.

From perusing Apple’s “discussions” it seems that they are particularly good at hoodwinking flush fanbois into forking over big cash for extra cards to drive their extra displays, when even the most anemic card they offer can drive two monitors perfectly well. Many ‘bois seem to be under the notion that having extra cards actually accelerates their overall computing experience, as if any mainstream developers had already rolled out OpenCL apps (good luck on that happening anytime soon . . .)

Anyway, while I was there I couldn’t help but play with shiny objects & checked out some phones. All of the ones I picked up had all 5 bars of signal strength, regardless of how it was held. Isn't it interesting that the well documented antenna strips-conductance problem seems to not exist at all on their demo phones.

Apple wouldn't load their "store" phones with "special" software that gives false high-signal readings, would they? Maybe it’s a question that their “geniuses” can answer.

Maybe not . . .

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Paris Hilton

Femtocell

Probably have a femtocell in the store to boost the local signal strength to full in an indoor environment so even a few bar drop thanks to the iGrip wont hamper performance in a demo.

Paris, always full strength indoors!

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Stop

RE: Funny thing

"Isn't it interesting that the well documented antenna strips-conductance problem seems to not exist at all on their demo phones."

...and that the ONE poster in this forum who actually HAS an iPhone has experienced no problem at all.

Why do the words "mountain" and "molehill" immediately spring to mind?

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Nothing new here, move along

People are just now figuring out that Apple censors their own product forums? Same thing happened in 2001 when OS X first came out with version 10.0.0-10.0.9. Then when their 10.2.7 update actually damaged LOTS of external firewire drives. And then when they switched from Motorolla to IBM chips. And then when they switched from IBM to Intel Chips.

I bet you won't find any entries for those problems and complaints about poor response, or even questions by loyal fans for "workaround" solutions to some of these problems before Apple admitted making mistakes.

One reason why I don't rely on vendor supported forums for all of my technical advice, ALL VENDORS throw the baby out with the dirty bathwater in order to "look" clean and simple.

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Paris Hilton

Wrong grip

I haven't heard such a flap about the proper grip since I was twelve and that was a totally different subject.

Paris because... well, it should be obvious.

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Stop

Steve says "No!"

That is all

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FAIL

The End of Apple!?!?!

It would seem that all of the bad press is mounting on apple link an avalanche. Check these out:

http://www.lieconomy.com/fourm/index.php/topic,641.0.html

http://www.lieconomy.com/fourm/index.php/topic,643.0.html

And with security holes like this, who in their right mind would buy one?

http://www.lieconomy.com/li/columnists/daveg/hist/060710.htm

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FAIL

RE: The End of Apple!?!?!

"It would seem that all of the bad press is mounting on apple link an avalanche. Check these out:

http://www.lieconomy.com/fourm/index.php/topic,641.0.html

http://www.lieconomy.com/fourm/index.php/topic,643.0.html"

Two forum postings. The replies look like they were written by teenagers. Less than ten replies each as well. That hardly consititues "an avalanche".

"And with security holes like this, who in their right mind would buy one?

http://www.lieconomy.com/li/columnists/daveg/hist/060710.htm"

Well, considering you have to steal the phone and then plug it into a computer running Ubuntu (that has the correct software installed.)

Then you have to perform the hack and somehow put the phone back without anyone noticing.

Besides which, how are you going to get any software onto the phone without jailbreaking it (and making it immediately obvious what has happened)?!?

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Stop

How about another angle?

I wonder if this could be the turning point for Apple. The part where their loyal customers look at what they're getting for what they're paying and decide they've simply had enough. This isn't like fuel or food; the iPhone is an optional luxury product that people are free to buy or, more importantly, choose NOT to buy.

Arguments about fanbois and gullibility aside I have to wonder if this is the point where the scales fall from the eyes of a sufficient number of prospective or exisiting Apple customers who simply think "iPhone? Oh, that's the overpriced one which doesn't do much. The one they sold knowing it wasn't working properly." Stranger things have happened and products have vanished simply because public perception has shifted subtly.

I think this is why Apple are now behaving the way they are. At the peak of the iPhone hysteria Steve Jobs got away with treating developers, customers and loyal fans of his products like dogshit. He could do this, of course, simply because the iPhone's primacy was unquestionable. No criticism of the device was brooked without the brandishing of sales figures or mantras about stuff just working in the Eden that was the iPhone walled garden.

Now that something in the garden stinks, a problem which even Apple can't pretend doesn't exist, the classic sniffy indifference might be losing them more customers than they think. I'm sure in the long run, though, it won't be that big of a deal...

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Happy

Quite possibly

The fanboys are immune to reality. But they are not a big enough group to keep Apple in huge profits from mediocre gear. If Apple were selling three units a year, they would still see them as dominant.

Once the association goes from "just works" and does everything, to " Oh.. the one that doesn't do flash" despite the fair game attack on Adobe over recent months, and "Ohh.. isn't that the one you have to hold in a special way to get it to work?"

Apple have lasted years selling ordinary stuff to the ignorant for a premium. It will eventually end. Just a matter of when..

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FAIL

Apple could've been more...

Apple could have been so much more of a company. It's sorry to see them go, but I'm glad to see so many products surpassing them and making them a memory. Goodbye apple, it was fun laughing at you when you were around.

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Anonymous Coward

Pot meet Kettle

El Reg has been guilty of this also so I don't think you can go mud slinging

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Anonymous Coward

Signal strength bars are designed to look good

The reason the signal strength software needs to be updated is because the current version is designed to maintain the symmetric design and visuals with the bars adjusting to keep the iPhone looking good :-)

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Flame

It's hillarious...

...to see all the RegTard Apple haters revelling in this issue and smugly proclaiming the end of Apple etc, etc. Unfortunately for you lot, the iPhone 4 is already and will continue to be a massive success and make vast amounts of money for Apple, even more so than previous models.

The antenna "flaw" has been blown totally out of all proportion, and is only even an issue for the tiniest minority of users. For the overwhelming majority the iPhone 4 has overall excellent reception and call quality regardless of how you hold it. When the iPhone 3G came out there was a huge commotion about it dropping calls and having a "design flaw", "recall required" etc. etc. but that soon evaporated. The same thing will happen to the iPhone 4 antenna non-issue, at which point all you RegTard Apple haters can crawl back into your caves where no one can here you whine.

Lastly, it's somewhat disingenuous of Consumer Reports to say on it's freely accessible blog that the iPhone 4 "can't be recommended" when on it's proper ratings page, only accessible to those who pay for it, it still rates the iPhone 4 as the "best smartphone available": http://bit.ly/dnvexa

Now I'll sit back and wait for a sack full of downvotes on my post. After all, it's much easier to do that than argue with reason.

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