Apple Customer Disservice Strikes Company Loyalties Dead

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Apple’s being a meanie-butt. And a poo-poo head. Company policy is one thing, but customer disservice is quite another. I’m not going to rehash why LockerGnome staffer — and once very loyal Apple customer — Matt Ryan’s all up in arms about a big fraud bungle he’s dealing with (because you can read his account of the situation in his post, How PayPal and Apple’s Fraud Policies Punish the Honest User), but Apple’s really dropping the ball in this particular situation. In short: Matt’s Apple ID has been frozen because his account was hacked three months ago. This means that he no longer has access to support for his Apple hardware or the ability to update any of his software — and that’s just the tip of the iceberg of problems this is causing him.

Even more insulting is that none of this is Matt’s fault! If Apple’s security can be so easily breached, perhaps the company should give its paying customers the benefit of the doubt rather than punishing them for succumbing to attacks by the unscrupulous. It’s like locking away someone who’s been the victim of a pickpocket! Does that make any shred of sense? No! It’s ludicrous.

Just fix it, Apple. You have the power. Why lose the support of a customer who owns “a MacBook Pro, iMac, two iPads, three iPhones, two iPod touches, and an iPod Classic” as well as countless apps and software for those devices over some ridiculous blanket company policy that is ill-equipped to cover this kind of situation?

Anyway, it wasn’t all shaking fists of anger and bile-drenched incredulity over corporate cluelessness on this TLDR, I promise. Here are some of the things on LockerGnome.com and in our live YouTube stream that we chatted about today.

How PayPal and Apple’s Fraud Policies Punish the Honest User

Making sure that your online accounts are secure — especially ones that are tied to finances and purchased products — is stressful enough (and not 100% guaranteed, either). But when companies like Apple and PayPal work against your best efforts and treat you like the criminal when security is breached, it makes you wonder if you should be seeking out some alternative solutions from their competitors. Here, we talk about how LockerGnome staffer Matt Ryan is justifiably ticked off at the so-called customer service he’s receiving from Apple and PayPal after suffering from fraudulent charges incurred on his accounts three months ago. It just goes to show you how a blind application of company policy results in a downward spiral that can turn a loyal customer into an unsatisfied one.

How to Get Popular iPhone Apps for Free

FreeMyApps lets consumers get popular paid apps for free (like Angry Birds, Cut the Rope, and Grand Theft Auto) in exchange for trying out free apps. Beyond the obvious benefit for regular consumers (such as not having to pay for apps and without any jailbreaking), marketers of free apps get loads of new downloads — and marketers of paid apps get a whole new channel for incremental revenue and a boost to App Store visibility. It’s been two months since FreeMyApps launched, and it’s proving to be very popular. There’s not much more to say about the service but demonstrate how it works.

How to Create Multiple Virtual Desktops in Windows 7 for Free

Users of Linux and OS X benefit from having the ability to create and utilize multiple virtual desktops to use throughout the day. These desktops can allow the user to keep more programs open without cluttering the workspace, as well as separate programs that don’t need to be displayed together. Some applications exist consistently across all of the virtual desktops, while others exist within a certain space. Believe it or not, there are several ways to do this in Windows, though support isn’t necessarily bundled with the operating system itself. Here are two solutions that will allow you to create multiple virtual workspaces within Windows.

Should We Allow ID Chips to Be Placed Under the Skin of Humans?

How would you like to wake up some morning only to find a tattoo on your arm that says Intel Inside? The idea first started to gain traction back in 2002, when one company (Allied Digital Solutions via a subsidiary) sought FDA approval for its VeriChip, a radio-frequency identification (RFID) device. The purpose of the implant was to make it possible to identify a person — someone who could not identify themselves — and it would contain any pertinent health information that might be needed by emergency personnel. Obviously, there are other (some would say darker) uses for such technology, and privacy advocates say that ID chips like this would make it far too easy for our governments to keep tabs on us. Others, still, point to this as the Revelations-foretold “Mark of the Beast” that they believe will be mandated by an Antichrist-headed administration over a population of hellbound sycophants. But what do you think? Should we allow ID chips to be embedded in human beings?

Are You Violating Copyright Without Realizing It?

You might be a copyright violator and not even know it! And if you run a website, you might be condemning yourself to obscurity thanks to the increasing vigilance of search engines on the issue. Learn about the huge problem with website plagiarism and its impact — including Google’s duplicate content rules, losing customers, and/or simply feeling violated. Learn how to verify that your own site doesn’t have plagiarized content or unlicensed images. Protect your most valuable content! Figure out how to effectively communicate your policies with developers working on your site (as well as how to properly copyright or trademark your most important stuff). Do you know someone who should be at this week’s Wednesday Webinar? Have them join Gnomies immediately!

Why Your Blog Should Have an Email Newsletter

Whether you run your own personal blog as a hobby or help manage a blog for a business, attracting — and retaining — readers is a crucial component to your marketing campaign. Readers can help increase your ad revenue, drive more traffic to your website, or even generate more viral awareness of your existence. One easy way to keep these readers coming back for more is with an email newsletter, which can be created using free apps like Google’s FeedBurner or more complex programs like Aweber or Mailchimp. As a result of our successes here at LockerGnome, I believe it is crucial that every blog — no matter how big or small — has an email newsletter. Here are a few reasons why.

Back Link of the Day

Thanks to cpukid00, who elegantly responds to our LockerGnome article about the legality of Hackintoshes. People who disagree with anything we say here should take some very careful notes about how to raise objections from him — he does it the right way! If you’d like to be mentioned as a Back Link of the Day, link to one of our posts on LockerGnome.com from your site and — this is the important part — tell us about it!

Feel bad because you missed out on today’s live TLDR? Don’t despair! Join us live tomorrow at 3:00 p.m. Pacific for the next edition of The LockerGnome Daily Report!