Quiet Gifts Mean The Most (9/17/01)

"Our thoughts are with those who were affected by the recent tragic events." That's the message that's been posted to Apple's home page since last Thursday-- and indeed, it's not just a message, but the message; it's not stuck in a remote corner of the page, lost among flashy photos of new products or links to reviews. Indeed, it's all the more jarring-- and poignant-- that Apple's home page doesn't include one single image of a Mac; aside from the tab links and search box, the only thing on that whole page is a message of sympathy and a link to the Red Cross.

If you're so cynical that you see that message as more of a PR stunt than a sincere expression of sympathy, then perhaps we should point out that something else is missing from Apple's home page: any mention whatsoever of the company's financial donation. As pointed out by faithful viewer Dundee, MacCentral has confirmed that Apple is cutting a check for one million dollars to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, which benefits "the families of the firefighters, police and other emergency response personnel who lost their lives." On top of that, Apple is also donating an iBook to each of those families with kids once the holidays arrive.

Now, think about it; if Apple were trying to capitalize on the PR value of a move like that, we'd expect a huge announcement on the company's home page, or at least a press release. But when last we checked, no mention of Apple's donation appears anywhere on the company's entire web site. (Here's hoping Apple doesn't prove us wrong in the meantime.) So we can only interpret Apple's gift in the spirit in which it was offered: as a gesture of sympathy, and the sincere extension of helping hand during some very trying times. Kudos to Apple for doing something genuinely noble-- and resisting the temptation to turn it into a crass marketing ploy.

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The above scene was taken from the 9/17/01 episode:

September 17, 2001: Apple cancels next week's Apple Expo amid "safety concerns." Meanwhile, the company donates a cool million and a slew of iBooks to the families of emergency personnel who perished in last week's rescue efforts, and last Saturday's Tampa Apple store grand opening was a success-- next stop, Germantown, Tennessee...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 3303: Open To Interpretation (9/17/01)   Oooo, we can hear the flame-laden arguments already. Sigh. Okay, folks, here's the Controversy of the Day: according to an official press release pointed out by faithful viewer Thu, due to the devastation of last Tuesday, Apple has cancelled the Apple Expo that was slated to happen in Paris next week...

  • 3305: Bombers Into Butterflies (9/17/01)   If you were worried that, in light of recent events, last Saturday's Apple store grand opening in Tampa might have been a flop, that's perfectly understandable. After all, who feels like celebrating at a time like this?...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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