Rory Cellan-Jones – is he biased?

It would appear that whenever Rory Cellan-Jones, technology correspondent for the BBC, posts any new articles he immediately gets accused of being Apple biased. What’s the evidence? Let’s look at his most recent articles for the BBC.

Blackberry’s ‘bring your own’ blues

As Blackberry withdraws from the consume marketplace, Rory managed to make mention of Apple twice and the iPhone 3 times in an article.

The opening salvo of two Apple and an iPhone mention come as Rory quotes from the CEO of Blackberry of 2007 about the competition from Apple. Rory states “So what went wrong? The answer seems obvious – the iPhone arrived”. Really? You know that for sure – Blackberry failed because of the iPhone?

There’s then a reference to when the iPhone launched and then the fact that both the iPhone and Android ended up taking the market. This latter revelation seems to fly in the face of the earlier statement that Blackberry’s failure was due solely to the iPhone.

Conclusion: Rory doesn’t seem to know whether to accept that the iPhone or the combined market affected Blackberry, but certainly seems set on trying, without any facts to back it up. At the very least, a swath of Apple references ensures that they’re not forgotten.

Microsoft upgrades Surface tablets

This is all about Microsoft releasing new versions of their tablets. Yes, Apple gets a mention in relation to its share of the market, but so does Android – indeed, it highlights the fact that Android have the biggest market.

However, he does somehow manage to make 4 references to iPads, although 1 is a quite from someone else. There are references to other non-Apple models but none of them get more than a single reference.

But context is everything.

The first reference was the aforementioned reference to market share.

The second was the fact that a smaller version of the Surface was expected to compete with the Google Nexus 7 and iPad Mini. I guess you could question why the iPad in particular was used as a second example as it isn’t the 2nd best selling compact tablet.

The last reference (bear with me, you’ll understand why I’ve missed out the third) is quote from somebody else.

Now, that third reference. Rory states that because the Surface is not cheap “Microsoft is aiming at the same kind of people who use an iPad”. I’m not really sure what to make of that. In a way, he seems to be insulting iPad owners, suggesting that the price is what attracts people to the iPad rather than anything else. An odd comparison.

Conclusion: For an article about a Microsoft product Apple gets a good few mentions and a lot of the comparisons are unneeded. That comment about it appealing to iPad owners because of cost is bizarre but, again, unnecessary.

Tesco enters the tablet fray with Hudl

Another tablet article, so Rory is bound to use the iPad as a comparison.

However, 3 references to Apple and 2 to the iPad seems a touch excessive – after all, we’re talking about an Android tablet, aren’t we? Android gets just 4 mentions, in comparison.

Apple references first…

First of all, there’s a mention that Apple “kickstarted the [tablet] revolution”. Not sure the relevance here.

However, the next two are jaw-dropping. I’ll quote directly…

You might think that would spell trouble for the market leader Apple, but it has managed to keep on selling iPads very profitably despite the yawning price gap opening up with rival Android devices. The Apple brand remains very desirable – and the company won’t have too many worries about its shrinking share of the market as long as it can keep profit margins high.

So, a reference to the iPad being a market leader and how popular it still is. How desirable the Apple product is gets thrown in too. Basically, in this sentence Rory hoists himself on his petard – if he ever tries to deny being an Apple apologist this is what would need to be shown as evidence. It’s, unashamedly, an Apple advert in the middle of a review of an Android tablet.

Maybe I’m wrong. But if I am, so are a lot of commenters too…

A non-review as usual from Rory, just an excuse to talk up the iPad

How much Apple paying RORY?!?!?!

Why does Rory have such a fetish for apple? is he on the payroll?

I for one am fed up with this Apple love in

What did he say about Android again? He seems to forget that people buying Android devices are not after the big logo of a bitten apple.

And these are just the top rated comments – I could go on. But won’t as I suspect you get the idea.

Conclusion: See above. Abysmal.

4G signal problems

An article about the 4G network. Surely Rory can’t crowbar in a reference to Apple this time?

He can’t – it’s quite amazing. However, with 2 screenshots of a network speed test in the article, he couldn’t help on one but “accidentally” forget to remove the top of the image revealing he did it on an iPhone. At least we know what phone Rory uses (but hardly surprising).

Conclusion: Rory has an iPhone. Who’d have though?

Standing out from the IFA crowd

Rory attended IFA in Berlin, a big technology showcase where Apple wasn’t present. However, that doesn’t stop them from being mentioned.

Sure enough, when discussing a keyboard Rory makes mention of the Bluetooth Smart technology that it uses and the fact that Apple are interested in this technology too. But, then, Samsung are too. Why didn’t they get a mention? Or Blackberry, Sony or Microsoft?

Conclusion: Appalling. A mention of Apple for no reason other than to get their name in the article. Yes, they are using Bluetooth Smart, but then so are a large number of other companies that don’t get a mention. Poor journalism.

Samsung and Sony – searching for a new frontier

Samsung and Sony release new products. Not Apple, so they shouldn’t get a mention. Wrong!

He mentions that Samsung’s new Smartwatch beats Apples fabled iWatch to the market. Sony and Pebble has already launched Smartwatches so it’s odd that they don’t get a mention.

Otherwise, a pretty un-Apple article. However, even that one reference doesn’t avoid the ire of some commenters…

enough of the pro-Apple bias, please!!

That was actually a half-decent article until the totally unnecessary reference to Apple

Conclusion: A better example from Mr Cellan-Jones. He somehow mentions to talk about Technology companies without constantly referencing Apple.

So, is he biased?

Did you not read what I wrote above? It would be hard to look at more than a few examples of his work without jumping to the conclusion that he is. Reference to Apple and their products seem to pervade everything he touches. Yes, they’re a big player in the technology market, but then so are so many other companies and products.

It’s made worse, of course, by the fact that he’s a correspondent for the BBC, who should be remaining partial. Maybe he needs his Apple toys taken away from him for a while so that he can plant his feet in the real word once more.

Photo: “Ok, I have my 2 Macbooks but where’s my iPhone?”, cellanj

One response

  1. Nick Bristow avatar
    Nick Bristow

    Rory even managed to mention the Apple iPad today on The R4 Today program this morning when talking about the 1 millionth Raspberry Pi being made in England. It quite stunned me.

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