Entry 381: You, Too?

So I just got the new U2 album. I don’t have any other U2 albums, and I didn’t particularlylarge[1] want this one, but it was given to me as a gift.

Don’t get me wrong; I don’t mind U2, but I just never had the urge to buy their music. Plus, when they first appeared on the scene, I wasn’t interested in any new rock group fronted by Cher’s former husband.

But anyway, as I said, I got their new album as a present. It wasn’t gift-wrapped; it just showed up one day.

On my phone.

As you may know, some outfit called Apple,Inc., out of the goodness of its heart and some sort of misguided promotional effort, beamed Bono and band out to everyone’s iPhone. If you haven’t heard of this, and you have an iPhone, check your music files for the “Songs of Innocence” album. Go ahead and do it right now. I’ll wait.

[Here I’m humming “Sunday, Bloody Sunday” until you return.]

Are you back? Did you see your gift from Apple? Isn’t it nice to know that a major corporation would give you something like that…whether you want it or not?

I have to admit, I’m not all that appreciative. I feel like I should object vehemently to this u2-apple-event[1]invasion of my…what exactly? I mean, if I came home one day and found a $10 bill slipped under my door, I’d be initially puzzled, but ultimately I’d say “Oh, cool,” and stuff the bill in my wallet while wondering why I’m talking to myself again.

How is Apple’s gift any different?

I’ll tell you how. Because Apple is a major corporation. And deep down, we all suspect that every major corporation, especially those involved in technology, is out to one day take over our lives. Even as we incessantly update our statuses, upload Instagram photos, buy stuff from Amazon and tweet our every thought, we are aware, in our heart of hearts, that the price we are paying for this accessibility, convenience and sharing is control of our very existence.

So when one of these corporations does something nice, it’s like a stranger offering you candy. I see this U2 album on my phone, and my first thought isn’t “What songs are on it?” it’s “What might they have embedded in it?”

If they have this awesome power to stick stuff into your phone, what else will they do? Sure, a free U2 album seems benign. But what if Apple sent your phone something much more malignant…like a One Direction album? Then you’d be having a party with your adult friends, and you’re piping in music from your phone on shuffle, and the new One Direction song “Fireproof” starts playing, and all your friends look at you weirdly, and suddenly they remember other places they have to be, and you never hear from them again.

That’s right. Apple can turn you into a social outcast with a flick of a switch.  And for all you know, you gave them permission to do it the last time you “accepted” one of their agreements.  “I hereby agree to give Apple, Inc. full access to my phone for the purpose of sticking anything on it they damn please including the Barney theme song while storing my stuff on their cloud for the purpose of having my naked selfies show up on Reddit.”

You didn’t see that clause, did you?  (Admit it; you didn’t read any of the 3,457 clauses.)

So now that I’ve pointed out to you how evil Apple is for giving you stuff, you probably Songs-of-Innocence-GRATIS[1]aren’t feeling that positive about your free U2 album. Well, fine then. Be like that, you ungrateful bastard. Go ahead and delete your FREE album which Apple has so generously given you against your will. What’s that? You don’t know how to delete it? What an idiot! Here’s all you have to do:

•Go to https://itunes.com/soi-remove.
•Click Remove Album to confirm you’d like to remove the album from your account.
•Sign in with the Apple ID and password you use to buy from the iTunes Store.
•You’ll see a confirmation message that the album has been removed from your account.

If you downloaded the songs to iTunes on your Mac or PC or to the Music app on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, you’ll need to delete them manually.

Personally, I don’t want to go through the considerable trouble of deleting my wonderful gift, but I feel as though I shouldn’t listen to it, either. So I’m going to ignore it as a form of protest against…well, I don’t know what, exactly.

But take that, Bono!

See you soon.

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