ZEN & TECH 56: Why we hate people who love different phones

ZEN & TECH is our mobile lifestyle podcast, focusing not just on our phones, tablets, and gadgets, but how we can use technology to help us live better, richer, happier lives. It's how we center our inner geeks! Since it's platform week on Talk Mobile 2013, Georgia and Rene are back to discuss the elephant in every comment system - fanboyz, haters, trolls, and griefers. Namely, if we love a phone - or anything else - why do we feel the need to hate on people who love different phones?

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Disclaimer

While Georgia is a therapist, she's not YOUR therapist. Everything said or implied on this show is for informational and entertainment purposes only. And shouldn't be taken in any way as a replacement for proper, professional care.

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Music is Peace on Earth by wellman.

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Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, Vector, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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ZEN & TECH 56: Why we hate people who love different phones

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Humans tend to like conformists. People who are or want to be like them. So if you have an iPhone and I have an iPhone, we'll get along great. But if I have an Android and you have an iPhone, we may have a problem, according to the way a lot of people interact in forums or on the web. I've worked jobs as an IT Tech where mentioning any Apple product among staff techs was greeted with an unreasonably negative response. I've applied for jobs where my PC experience was scoffed at by employers who were more interested in my Apple tech skills. People just don't seem to get along well when they have different perspectives, ideas, belief systems or in this case, Phone platforms. At the end of the day, technology is just a tool, not a religion or belief system (or at least, it isn't for me). It's just a phone, tablet, or computer, used to get work done, entertain ourselves, and communicate with others. It's really not something to become an obsessed zealot over, but if you read comments here, there, and everywhere on the web, you will find people on different platforms who don't even know each other, engaging in hate mongering and levels of negativity that border on complete insanity.

My issues with technology are simple. Is the screen big enough for me to not have to squint at it? Does it do everything I need it to do? Does it do most of what I want it to do? Does it have all or most of the apps I need? How is the quality of the hardware? How is the user experience? If I get a positive answer to this, I will use whatever platform works for me at that time. I've used Palm, Windows Mobile, Blackberry, Android, and now Apple and I'm not personally stuck on any one of them (although I really wish that Palm survived). I'm not against using any platform that isn't the one I currently use (Apple), provided that a different platform will allow me to do the same things and have the same functions as the platform I use now, or get the job done better than my current platform. I will use whatever works for me, and I don't feel the need to defend that to someone who uses something different and is negative about the platform I'm on for some reason that is more about their personal experiences than mine. I don't really care if anyone agrees with my choice of platform or how I feel about it because I didn't choose my current platform to seek acceptance with some group of hipsters. I chose this platform because it worked better than Android Gingerbread, at the time. And if I decide to choose a different platform at upgrade time, it will be because whatever Apple is offering at the time isn't enough of an upgrade over my iPhone 4S to warrant sticking with Apple and some other more compelling choice, gets the job done.

We're all "individuals" Rene, and have a right to like or dislike this platform or that platform, but there is an unreasonable level of disagreement at times in these forums on like or dislike of a platform, that rises to the level of name calling and insults, and that's ridiculous and in some cases, insane. All platforms have pluses and minuses, whether individuals agree on them or not, but there is a big difference between disagreeing as mature adults and disagreeing on a level that can only be described as at times, infantile at best and school yard bullying, at worst. You in particular, Rene, are often the target of insults that go way overboard and are completely inappropriate and most of the time, quite ridiculous, just because someone disagreed with your articles or opinions. They're just phones and tablets. There's nothing to fight over, but some of these commentors act like school children on low blood sugar about these things. I contend that we can agree to either agree or disagree in a civil manner, rather than behave as immature individuals with low IQ's, afflicted with ADD and not taking meds.

Very well worded, Dark_Blu... this and your initial comment. However, I believe Rene was being tongue-in-cheekish by his comment about individuals. He can be a funny guy sometimes. ;)

Yes, he can be funny and clever, but I don't like when even he gets the "insult dog" treatment. It's wrong. I just find the voracity of the disagreements on platforms, features, and such to get far too personal from every type of fan of every platform, when at the end of the day, it's just a phone and it either does what each individual needs it to do, or they find another platform that does. We should be able to agree or disagree without descending into some immature school girl name calling match.

Dark-Blu I admire your quest to have everyone respected for their own thoughts and preferences as it is noble and not often seen. I'll just call out one thing and you can take from it what you want. When you say "We should be able to agree or disagree without descending into some immature school girl name calling match" that is to say how things should be. If people want to respect others individuality, or if they want to dislike each other for adopting a different point of view - that is the wonderful freedom of thought we call Earth. If everyone "should" accept the thoughts of another, that is just another level of conformity.

I don't give a crap what phone people use in real life. I just don't care. Free country. Knock yourself out.

I do, however, care greatly about what phone I use. And it's not just the hardware. The hardware is just the box the experience is delivered in. And part of that experience is the ecosystem. So the phone is just the tip of the pyramid. That's why I chose iPhone. Best experience, best ecosystem, best OS, and yeah, the hardware is great too.

Great video. Glad you guys choose to talk about this. Georgia's explanation was very helpful. I feel to each his or her own. I admit I get really protective when someone starts dissing Apple because it is my platform of choice. But like Rene said I once felt that way about webOS. Went through serious withdrawal pains when webOS got thrown under the bus. Still despise HP up till now. So it is true we attach a lot of personal significance and meaning to these things we like. You hate my platform is saying you hate me. Still I agree being mean and boiling over in a blog is not adult of most of us.

I dont hate people who uses different phones. I dont have a problem with Symbian, WebOS, or even Windows Phone no matter how good or how crap they are.
To me it is about value and moral issues with Google. The one who claim themselves do no evil. The one who think themselves are so righteous. While on one side they continue to give away many things for free, on the other side they continue to destroy value. They earn a few billions, and give away a few millions for interesting project / things / cause that is to me nothing more then marketing budget.
All these happened before Android was born. And the stab in the back from Google to Apple merely proof my thoughts.
I admire them for their engineering talent and technology advancement.
But to me , evil are created by those who think themselves are so righteous.

I very much loved listening to this talk. it has been very informative.

i have wondered to the point of theorizing why people get so "tribal" with the different Platforms. I'm glad to say it was brought up shortly but not the whole. but my idea was that People get so worked up because to those people, that particular phone has become part of them and to insult the platform would insulting the people themselves as individuals and people take it personally, while not realizing it.