The power of Consumer Reports

It's surprising to me (in a good way) that Consumer Reports still has the clout they do.  I was raised by very practical, discriminating parents who were longtime subscribers, and who loved its sensible incorruptible editorial outlook.  For those who have followed its history, there was a stretch of time--perhaps most of the 1990s--when the magazine's design looked increasingly dated, and its view of the world felt out of touch.  Failing to keep up wasn't unusual, of course: dozens of publications were blind-sided by the new media requirements pushed with tidal force by the Internet.

But then CR surprised a lot of people--including me--by running one of the first successful subscription sites on the Internet.  This is a distinction they still enjoy today.

A magazine keeping its head above water is commendable and a little surprising these days (see: Newsweek).  What is even more surprising is that CR, the wake of its "Not Recommended" rating of the iPhone 4, seems to be the one force capable of making Apple hold a press conference to apologize (almost), explain its actions (almost), and take some steps towards resolution.

That is no small feat.


Apple striving to be Microsoft? Say it isn't so

"...I've become much more suspicious of Jobs' business practices than I once was.  To me, he looks increasingly like Gates in the late 90s, with a lot more charisma and far better propaganda. In the Flash debate from a few months ago, for example, he was unwilling to demonstrate why supporting Flash is bad for the user experience, and he hasn't explained why Apple is the only 1 of the 5 mobile / tablet OSs to refuse to support a web media standard on his media devices...."

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