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The curious case of Jon Prosser's eyebrows and why no leak is confirmed until it is

Jon Prosser
Jon Prosser (Image credit: FPT)

It's been a big 24 hours for leaker and Front Page Tech guy Jon Prosser. Things started out well enough – he was utterly convinced that we'd see an Apple event take place on March 23 which should have meant Apple sending out notifications yesterday. Those notifications never arrived and the event doesn't seem to be happening.

Now Prosser is going to have to shave his eyebrows by way of forfeit.

Now, backing up a bit, Prosser isn't alone in getting this one wrong. We heard from leaker 'Kang' that March 23 would be the day back on March 8. Prosser backed that up and all seemed to point to an event in the offing. But Prosser was so sure of his source that he went a step further, putting his eyebrows on the line.

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That, as it turns out, was a mistake. Time to warm those clippers up!

I of course don't blame Prosser for being wrong this time around. Nor do I blame 'Kang,' whoever that might turn out to be. We all get things wrong from time to time. Some of us more than others.

But what makes this March 23 rumor so interesting is the way multiple people seemed to buy into it at the same time. The way Prosser really bought into it. And the way they were all equally wrong. The fact the same date appeared in multiple Twitter feeds within hours of each other makes me wonder about the source(s). Are these people all using the same one(s) perhaps?

Now strikes me as a great time to remind everyone that leaks are just that – leaks. And no matter how much some news outlets might like to slap the word "CONFIRMED!" into their headlines, nothing is confirmed until Apple does the confirming.

What I'm most interested in here is the fact that leakers got this so wrong. Prosser now says that the event will take place next month instead. He'll apparently explain what went down in a future YouTube video. But whatever happens, I suspect he'll learn a lesson from this situation. So might the person giving him his information, too.

That's doubly true if it turns out that this was all orchestrated by Apple's anti-leak team as a way to out those sharing information with the press.

And now I need to know what that team's called. Something cool, I hope.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.

  • Apple was so furious when Prosser first hit the scene with deep insider leaks of finite detail, that I can just hear Cook: "OFF WITH HIS EYEBROWS!" and postponing a few weeks - ha ha ha.
  • I have tried several times, but i just cannot watch the guy. Maybe I am too old, but I find his spastic style of video mentally grating and it gives me a headache after only a minute or so. This technique of rapid-cuts, jerky video, start/stop/jerky dialogue peppered with rapid-cut insertions of asides is a really popular video style use by LOTS of YouTubers today, but it is so hard to watch that I will just have to read what he said in articles written by others.
  • Same here, although I must say his podcast is really entertaining and is definitely one to listen too for Apple rumours and news.
  • So, can we somehow distinguish between leaks and rumors? To me a leak as a fact that got out that shouldn't have. That would be like an early copy of the announcement, before Apple officially sends it out. Doesn't sound like this was that. This sounds more like a guy looked over a secretary's shoulder and saw Tim Cook's calendar was blocked for a day, assumed there was an event and called his buddy Kang or Jon. That's a rumor.
  • I think it is more of Apple trying to flush out the leaker so they gave the wrong info to certain people and see what got out. I am surprised someone with info that works for apple would risk leaking it to these Youtubers. But hey once they get canned maybe then they will learn to keep their mouths shut lol.