Apple 2.0

Covering the business that Steve Jobs built

Apple's spurned lovers

February 21, 2011: 6:37 AM ET

Publishers reach for new metaphors to describe what Steve Jobs just did to them

Source: Le Monde

It's not easy to explain to customers who like the sound of Apple's (AAPL) new subscription plan -- from one-click purchases to protection from junk mail -- why it's a deal breaker for publishers.

So they've turned to the most powerful weapon in their literary arsenal -- the metaphor. A sample from Monday's news stories:

  • "Traditional print publishers have spent the past few years cast in the role of the nice old-fashioned girl in high school who was ignored while more recent arrivals got all the attention." -- David Carr, the New York Times
  • "They're the beautiful girlfriend you had in high school who was a bitch for no apparent reason," grumbled one publishing executive. -- Lucia Moses, MediaWeek
  • Richard Jones, the co-founder of Last.fm, put it more bluntly: "Apple just ____ over online music subs for the iPhone." -- Josh Halliday, the Guardian

For more substantive analysis of the publisher's predicament, see Frédéric Filloux's Monday Note.

Also on Fortune.com:

[Follow Philip Elmer-DeWitt on Twitter @philiped]

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About This Author
Philip Elmer-Dewitt
Philip Elmer-DeWitt
Editor, Apple 2.0, Fortune

Philip Elmer-DeWitt has been following Apple since 1982, first for Time Magazine, and now on the Web for Fortune.com.

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