Apple’s internal style guide makes the news and we’re dumber for it

Apple VP Phil Schiller made tech blog headlines for a recent tongue in cheek discussion with journalists on Twitter about how to pluralize Apple product names. It’s no surprise that Apple has an internal style guide it uses to make sure that references to its own products are consistent; it’s also no surprise that in a system filled with individual human beings that use their own interpretation of language to communicate, that even Apple is occasionally inconsistent in its implementation.

I got kind of fed up and posted this on Twitter:

I watched this story unfold with a fair degree of irritation, and it finally struck me as to why.

It’s because my role as a tech journalist, I lost track of the number of times that a well-meaning, inevitably junior PR rep would contact me to let me know that I’d misused their client’s name or trademark: it’s intercapped, or it’s all capitalized, or the i at the start, in the middle or at the end is always lower case, etc.

As a blogger and magazine writer, I’m beholden to my publication’s own style guide – or whatever style standard we’ve agreed to (like AP or Chicago), before whatever mishigas your marketing department has come up with.

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