I'm so glad more people are moaning
I commented on this general sentiment a couple months ago, and I'm just happy to see that more people are getting irritated as well. It really does seem like the writing staff are made up more and more of 18 yr old's with an axe to grind rather than common sense or some journalistic sense of moderation or maturity.
I hate to state the cliché, but I really have been reading the Reg for seven or eight years now. I'm not a moron, I DO understand the humour. I DO appreciate irreverence and I've learnt a lot from some great written pieces here, both on technology and on social and legal issues. But, you guys are reminding me more and more of The Inquirer (yes, I know there's a shared history).
A couple years back, when Sun refused invitations to Inquirer writers and did some things that the Inquirer didn't like, the stung Inquirer staff openly and childishly declared Sun a has-been company and stated that they wouldn't write about them anymore. The nicknames for Sun and it's staff became less about humour and more about playground nastiness and tantrum bitchiness. Then quietly when Sun came out with some good stuff again, the coverage was back. The Inquirer insists on writing the iPod as 'Ipod' - you see, they think it proves that they've got their own minds, they're not sheep oh no...
For years, when Apple was the under-dog and commanded less attention, they were just another company amongst others that had intelligent Register pieces written about them as news came along. Achievments were lauded, fouls were called (the G4 and G5 MHz stalls and "myths") and there was some even-handed criticism. Now that they're doing well, now that they sell millions of products and seem to be on a roll, they're just not cool enough for you guys are they? You're even using the tired 'Kool-Aid' reference in your stories. That's the most common unimaginative teenager troll there is.
You spend more time throwing somehow-smug attacks at something (and the people who bought it) that you obviously hate than covering normal stories. The hype around the iPhone, it's features and price, it's users and activation was created mostly by dozens of web journalists and bloggers. It was created by YOU. YOU guys turned it into a religious issue - not Apple.
Nowhere has anyone panned the iPhone. Nowhere has anyone said it just doesn't do what it claims to do. But you've spent more time and words on griping about every tiny little thing you can find to sneer at... because.. well I don't know... It's expensive? Get over it. Don't buy one.
It's a transparent attempt to distance yourselves from seeming like you 'follow a trend'. You and others throw around words like 'fashionista' and 'cachet' like it's really as big a factor here in people's purchasing than it really is. Plenty of people buy phones that are coloured or have diamante glued on the front without knowing how or how well they work - plenty of cell-phone manufacturers sell their products by endorsements, how swish you'll look in your business meeting or literal slogans like 'Have a better life'. Somehow this form of advertising and the weak products escapes the indignant wrath of Reg writers. Somehow this is all fine, because they're not doing quite as well as Apple.
For some reason, I think if Apple had quietly releases a crap product and spent years slowly making it better, you would all have been happier. If they'd licensed a Linux-based OS and used bits of Opera and fudged a reasonable interface and sold it cheap you would all have smiled - especially if it hadn't sold well.
Sometimes something genuinely good comes along and lots of people buy it. Sometimes it's expensive and sometimes it's cheap. Not everyone that bought it is a genius or an idiot. How about reporting on the facts and leaving YOUR ego's out of it for a change?
You know what? People got an unexpected refund for queuing up to buy an expensive product that works well and works AS ADVERTISED. They knew that when they bought it and should be happy a refund-voucher happened at all. Well done to them for getting a result to their complaints.
This is a news site, with a good helping of humour and some healthy irreverence - it's not a social experiment to see how you can prove your own cool-factor by making your own readers tired of you.