Why tech companies hate the blogosphere

 Apple was in court last week attempting to gain access to blogger records that might unmask who leaked news of "Asteroid," a guitar-computer interface. This quest is part of a larger problem.

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Apple was in court last week attempting to gain access to blogger records that might unmask who leaked news of "Asteroid," a guitar-computer interface.

This quest is part of a larger problem. With some exceptions, technology companies such as Apple and many others detest the blogosphere.

Why? It is because these companies are control freaks. Their product announcements are tied in with trade shows and sales cycles, and such companies go ballistic when they are scooped before they have the opportunity to present new hardware or software with the pomp and circumstance they want to.

Much like the Pentagon, there's also a reflexive tendency toward secrecy. Just as some overheard conversation between two bozos in a Ridayh tea house is  probably going to wind up stamped "top-secret" at CIA HQ in Langley, companies such as Apple are, by corporate culture, predisposed to marking everything top secret.

But speaking of secrets, here's one for you. 

At the same time, many of these companies that preach secrecy in the name of "trademark infringement" are the same that will show prototypes to VARs (Value Added Resellers), carriers, systems integrators, third-party component suppliers, consultants, key retailers.

Non-Disclosure Agreements or no, it is impossible to entirely put the lid on scuttlebutt when you have hundreds of people clued in. These companies will say the lid needs to stay on because, well, competitors will find out what you are up to.

Now hear this, secretive technology companies. Your competitors already know.

These companies often hate and detest we bloggers because we will not do their bidding- i.e. shaddup up until the press release, then write glowing product reviews and case histories with cherry-picked alpha testers who are now allowed to talk.

But what these companies seem to forget is that the very blogs they regard with so much dread are not your enemy. They are largely read by enthusiasts for the products and services you have in the development pipeline. Blogs can be a force multiplier for consumer excitement among the very bases you want to appeal to.

So why, then, does tech loathe the blogosphere?

The widespread corporate culture of reflexive secrecy in the name of "trademark infringement" and "trade secrets" have, in many cases, been chiseled into corporate culture stone. Sometimes this is an artifact of the CEOs personality- Steve Jobs is secretive, and isn't exactly fond of anything open (like open platforms).

The nature of blogs, and of bloggers, is to challenge this culture. We have sources, we have nerve, and we happen to think the public's right to know trumps whatever secretive proclivities you have.

We're right, we have public opinion on our side, and you can't stand it. 

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