Cory Doctorow’s article, “Why I Won’t Buy an
iPad (and Think You Shouldn’t, Either),” is a review on the iPad. Doctorow is a
successful writer and has been surrounded by technology for his entire career.
He uses his former knowledge of technology, facts about Apple, and appeals to
the consumer to reinforce the idea that the iPad limits the content that can be
used and created with it.
Doctorow created this article to persuade the consumers into not
buying the iPad by telling then how limited the content on it is and how
limited the hardware of the product is. He states that he believes that the
iPad is not revolutionizing the world of technology like Apple had said it was.
He uses these facts, and his comparison of Apple’s iStore to Wal-mart to attract
the reader’s logic. He is trying to cause the reader’s thought process to
understand how corporations affect them. The iPad only allows for the programs
that Apple approves of to be run on it meaning that anything else that someone
would wish to run that Apple didn’t approve of or haven’t heard of will not be
on the iStore.
Doctorow also quotes William Gibson, an American-Canadian
fiction writer, which aids in showing ethos. Doctorow strengthens his integrity
by recognizing that he may also need information from an outside, reliable
source by using a quote from another author. Doctorow also appeals to pathos by
saying “I don’t want my universe of apps constrained to the stuff that the
Cupertino Politburo decides to allow for its platform.” (Doctorow). He makes
the reader think about the common human fear of being entirely controlled by
referencing the Communist party of the Soviet Union. Doctorow stirs up feelings
of rebellion because of being told what we are supposed to do as opposed to
what we want to do.
Doctorow’s article does have a few weaknesses, which cause it to
not entirely fulfill its purpose. He has a fairly obvious bias against
corporations due to them being able to control more than many other
corporations. His bias causes the points of Apple controlling what is able to
be on the device slightly less relevant. Also, he says that because of Apple
controlling what is on the device consumers can’t create their own programs, however,
not everyone is a programmer, so those people won’t care about this “issue.”
Doctorow does not state any positives about the iPad, which
shows that he is extremely biased against Apple. He doesn’t give the reader
anything to weigh against the cons of the device. He also fails to relate to
the common consumer by using complex diction that relates to technology, such
as DRM, that they may not understand.
The outcome of Doctorow’s article argues the side that other
products would be better to have. However, Doctorow refuses to state the
positives of the iPad, which makes the consumer believe that there may be some
underlying facts that are either unknown to Doctorow, or he is simply not
speaking about due to his bias.