Monday, February 05, 2007

The Moral Hazard of Apple

"Seriously, I've got this virus, stay well back"
"Not really, I'm a Mac"

Apple's latest adverts are annoying me.

Personally, I dislike negative marketing, if Apple are as amazingly much better as they claim, and their ~5% market share shows, then please can they talk about what they're doing right, not what Microsoft are doing wrong, and that's leaving aside the very dubious factual accuracy of much of what they have to say...

But beyond this, there are a couple of more serious points.

1. Homogeneity is bad for security. Irish potato farmers and NATO (sorry, can't find the reference) both understand this. As I suspect do Microsoft. Their monopoly hurts the security of their product by providing a high value target and a rapid adoption platform for infectious diseases.

2. Apple are creating a Moral Hazard. By redistributing the perceived risk they are encouraging unsafe behaviour. This is fine for them when they have a tiny market share, and so no real security threats (though a very large list of security problems), but if they ever became a more substantial force, and have spent the past years 'educating' their users that they're 'safe' because they're using a white computer, then they will have a huge problem and just performed society generally a serious dis-service.

So Apple, be different, it's good for both of us, but don't claim that you're better because you're different.

Oracle. Unbreakable 50+ different ways last quarter. Need I say more?