Apple book authors talk about the ‘nonsense’ you can find in their books [Video]

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This nonsense belongs with some of the other books I’ve read about Apple. It fails to capture Apple, Steve, or anyone else in the company.  —  Tim Cook on Yukari Kane’s Haunted Empire

Take it from someone who would know: Apple CEO Tim Cook has declared Haunted Empire: Apple After Steve Jobs, a book that seeks to dispel the idea that Apple can maintain its identity after losing its founder, to be “nonsense.” But Cook went beyond even that claim, noting that the term applied to a wide selection of books about the company.

Even so, the authors of three such books of “nonsense” gathered for a Churchill Club panel in which they discussed their views on Apple through the lens of the “nonsense” stories contained in their books, as well as some more recent developments spearheaded by your good friends here at 9to5Mac. The panel consists of Yukari Kane, Cult of Mac‘s Leander Kahney, and WIRED‘s Fred Vogelstein.

The complete video of the event is an hour and a half long and moves from a moderated discussion of Apple’s past, present, and future into an audience-driven Q&A session, which can help provide some new context for the stories found in the books. But hey, if a busy man like Tim Cook can read 700 emails in a day and still find time to read these “nonsense” books, you can probably find time to watch the entire video, which is embedded below:


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  1. Alex (@Metascover) - 9 years ago

    She’s just ridiculous. At the simple question on how does she know that Apple is struggling, she tries to scramble words so that no one will notice how she’s just telling BS.

  2. Lee (@leemahi) - 9 years ago

    I am 27 minutes in and I can tell you the chick in the middle is a great big phony!

  3. Alex (@Metascover) - 9 years ago

    I love how people who say that Apple is struggling or doomed or in danger always use vague concepts and arguments based on emotion and personal feeling, while others use simple, clear and concise arguments. It’s obvious in this video.

  4. Alex (@Metascover) - 9 years ago

    She’s not even capable to align three words to make a sentence. How could she write a whole book?

  5. Andrew (@adonis627) - 9 years ago

    Freaking idiots those “authors” are.

  6. rogifan - 9 years ago

    Jesus could you guys at 9to5Mac be any more snarky?

  7. tool022611 - 9 years ago

    What really bothers me is no matter how good Apple does, people constantly come out and say Apple is falling behind, Apple is doomed, blah blah blah. In the past year they have sold more products including the Mac yet they are still doomed. Yes Jobs was a great, but he is gone. Tim Cook took over the largest tech company, and launched great products, made more money than anyone else. Just because they haven’t reinvented a genre in a while, doesn’t mean they are doomed. I don’t see anyone else reinventing anything.

    • remoteviewed - 9 years ago

      You mean like Rolling Stone used to predict the “inevitable” break of the Rolling Stones for forty years?

  8. rlowhit - 9 years ago

    Journalists, websites, and blogs all operate under the same premise. They need eyeballs on what they are writing / selling and to keep readers coming back for more. Creating a buzz is what keeps them employed, no different than any other business. Facts by themselves are boring, things need to be dramatized a bit to keep readers attention.
    Its all entertainment folks.

  9. tool022611 - 9 years ago

    I’m only 30 min in and this is very hard to watch, especially the guy with the hands. Also, the guy from cult of mac isn’t getting any of the questions because he’s the only one who thinks they aren’t doomed, the girl starts talking about something completely different than what the question was.

  10. Yukari Kane makes absolutely no sense in this video. She keeps going off on tangents without actually answering anything. This would be much more interesting without her. Leander seems to be the most knowledgeable on the topic as a whole and Vogelstein presents a few valid points, but Vogelstein’s main point of needing a “killer idea” every 5 years is absurd. This statement was true 20 years ago when it was trying to regain it’s consumer base. Apple no longer needs (or doesn’t need to solely focus on) to sell people on buying into the company. Continuing to Make great products that are well designed and work well is going to keep Apple afloat.

    This isn’t to say they don’t need to innovate or push the technology, but every 5 years to stay alive is a stretch of a statement. With hints of advanced biometric wearables and new TVs, I don’t think Apple has anything to worry about.

    • borntofeel - 9 years ago

      And don’t forget that this standard that Apple itself created of a company that innovates so much is only applied to Apple. It’s totally unfair and unrealistic to expect a company to be able to make new categories like the iPhone forever. It’s as if Apple would sink if they didn’t have a new category available. Even if they didn’t introduce nothing new in the next years, they would still make great products.

  11. Fil Aperture - 9 years ago

    Fred Vogelstein is an imposter. I read his ‘book’ a while ago and the smeagol simply can’t hide that he is soooo in luv with Google.
    Nevertheless, both Vogelstein and Kane do have a point, they’re just to untalented to back it up. Their point is: innovation doesn’t come from Apple anymore and that is a treat to the company in the long run. Let’s face it: the past 3 years were all about evolution, not innovation.

    • o0smoothies0o - 9 years ago

      Yes innovation must happen every single year or the world will explode. Dear god people know nothing. People are so stupid that they actually think there is some drastic improvement to be made to these devices yearly. Well I’m very sorry to bring you back to reality, but the devices can only become so light and thin.

      P.S. If anyone doesn’t feel touch I.D. is innovating then I feel bad for you. Despite the fact that it is locked down at the moment, it will become insanely useful. It’s implementation is profoundly perfect. So simple easy and perfect.

  12. Derek Currie - 9 years ago

    Watching the video, my immediate impression is how average these writers are in their repeated use of ‘you know’, ‘you know’, which is a plague of the vernacular. I also note their lack of deep experience or comprehension of technology. Instead, these are marketing people. And, as I expect from marketing people, they focus on the surface, the perception, the relationship stuff, and miss the ocean for the wetness. I’m not interested in much of any opinion they have to offer. They may be useful at gathering information. But please don’t ask them to analyze it.

  13. Derek Currie - 9 years ago

    BTW: For folks interested in the phenomenon of perpetual ‘Apple Doom’, there’s a terrific web museum of artifacts at the MacObserver website called “The Apple Death Knell Counter” that tracks it back to 1995. It’s particularly interesting to follow the doom proclamations during the period of time when Steve Jobs was ‘saving Apple’. The early years of Jobs’ return featured some of the most relentless doom mongering of all. I find the phenomenon to be hilarious and excellent fodder for cynicism about tech journalism:

    • rettun1 - 9 years ago

      Oh my gosh, this is amazing. Good find! My favorite one, said in 2006:

      “The iPhone is nothing more than a luxury bauble that will appeal to a few gadget freaks. In terms of its impact on the industry, the iPhone is less relevant. […] Apple will sell a few to its fans, but the iPhone won’t make a long-term mark on the industry.”

      • tool022611 - 9 years ago

        These are pretty funny to read, for so long journalists bash Apple and have been wrong pretty much every step of the way. My favorite is #26.

      • Derek Currie - 9 years ago

        I keep posting the ‘Apple Death Knell Counter’ URL because I enjoy new folks discovering the list. I really is a marvelous documentation of bizarro human behavior. FUD is eternal, and eternally worthless.

  14. Dave Huntley - 9 years ago

    She is just so transparent – trying to cash in on Apple by dishing some gossip, or giving the idea she has somethign worth reading. It’s actually very badly written, every revue says that it is largely hard slogging to read, never mind whether you agree with her conclusion. But why would anyone want to hear her opinion, for this is all it is, her opinion is worth no more than yours or mine, so why would you give her money for that? The WSJ should fire her for producing crap.

  15. Stanley Manley - 9 years ago

    What else should a group of looser-authors do when they’ve been shut out of the cool and trendy Apple? This is a support-group therapy session, plain and simple. They’re just parasites trying to hang on to their jobs because they are ineffective at real journalism. They’re parasites. They don’t have to write the truth, they only need to make the content sensational enough for people to bite. This is precisely the kind of product I would expect from a Murdoch business, pure sensationalism. The WSJ is a total farce, where ‘integrity’ is a bad word and the holy grail is ‘ad revenue’. Their crusade isn’t for Microsoft or Google, but the hearts and souls of fools.

  16. macmaniman - 9 years ago

    hello and thank you for ruining my speakers

  17. Gasp! Authors defending their position as truthful and correct. Say it ain’t so? I mean, they’re not trying to sell books or anything…

  18. Ridiculous really. Someone here nailed it. Three slimy parasites, trying to living off crumbs of Apple by disparaging the company to attract attention.

    • borntofeel - 9 years ago

      You should have bothered watching the video. The author from CultofMac has good pro-Apple arguments.

  19. And 9to5 mac editors, your snarkiness in this story sounds completely dumb. You sure you really want to side with these three bullshitters?

  20. Woah. She doesn’t have a clue what she is talking about – painful to watch! She’s almost like the taxi driver who was mistaken for the IT expert on BBC news a while back. But he actually made more sense!

    Leander Kahney is the only one there worth listening to – they guy actually knows his stuff. The other two are just regurgitating mangled Apple anecdotes and getting them wrong.

    But of the three she is toe-curlingly just winging it.