Comedian Ellen DeGeneres apologizes for iPhone commercial parody

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Comedian Ellen Degeneres claimed she upset Apple officials with a parody of the company's iPhone commercials, prompting the talk show host to apologize for jokingly portraying the touchscreen device as difficult to use.



The host of the syndicated program "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" said on her program that representatives from Apple contacted her regarding a parody commercial she had aired on her program.



"I thought it was funny, a bunch of people thought it was funny," she said to her audience. "You know who didn't think it was funny? Yeah, the people at Apple didn't think it was so funny."



In the video, which mimics the style of Apple's instantly recognizable iPhone TV commercials, DeGeneres stumbles through a number of features on the handset, coming up only with failure. In an attempt to text, she pulls up the maps application. The parody shows the comedian trying to text again and mistakenly sending a message, before asking, "Can you help me with this?"



The next day on her show, DeGeneres showed the commercial again, and followed it up by praising a number of Apple products, including the iPhone, iPod and iPad. She then gave a tongue-in-cheek apology to Apple co-founder Steve Jobs and "Mr. Macintosh."



"They thought I made it look like it's hard to use, and I just want to say that I'm sorry if I made it like the iPhone is hard to use. It's not hard to use. I have an iPhone... I just learned how to text on an iPhone, it's the only phone that I can text on, and I love it."



"I love my iPad, I love my iPod," she said to applause from the audience. "I love IHOP, if you have anything to do with that."







Engadget editor-in-chief Joshua Topolsky, who originally posted the video, gave a succinct reaction: "After watching this video, we've come to one conclusion: Apple needs to learn how to take a joke."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 149
    rhyderhyde Posts: 294member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Comedian Ellen Degeneres claimed she upset Apple officials with a parody of the company's iPh

    Engadget editor-in-chief Joshua Topolsky, who originally posted the video, gave a succinct reaction: "After watching this video, we've come to one conclusion: Apple needs to learn how to take a joke."



    perhaps someone needs to learn how to tell a joke :-)
  • Reply 2 of 149
    mazda 3smazda 3s Posts: 1,565member
    It's a flippin' joke! No need for her to apologize. People at Apple need to grow a thicker skin or better yet, STFU and roll with the punches.



    Ellen's parody exactly mirrors my mom trying to use my 3GS.
  • Reply 3 of 149
    quadra 610quadra 610 Posts: 6,743member
    Well is that all the information we're going to get?



    I'd like to know what the actual basis (possibly legal) for Apple's complaint was and how she actually got the complaint, and exactly who at Apple did the complaining.



    Note that she didn't simply "say" things or make claims about the iPhone, but rather, she actually demonstrated its physical use via a fake commercial aired on her show.
  • Reply 4 of 149
    dualiedualie Posts: 331member
    Not sure who looks the bigger fool here, Apple for complaining or DeGeneres for apologizing.
  • Reply 5 of 149
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,841member
    Apple needs to put a little more polish on their public relations efforts. They're coming off as a bit bullying in the eyes of the public, at least that's the impression I've been getting (not my own feelings).
  • Reply 6 of 149
    davidtdavidt Posts: 112member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    "I thought it was funny, a bunch of people thought it was funny," she said to her audience. "You know who didn't think it was funny? Yeah, the people at Apple didn't think it was so funny."



    hmmm, i have so far thought that apple have been reasonable in most of their actions, considering they have a right to protect their products, and desire to see how their brand and their products are perceived and protected.



    but she is a comedienne, and if they did indeed not find it funny and thus contacted her asking her to apologize... that's pretty rough. parody and right to free speech are important facets of america and surely a corporation cannot threaten a comedienne and force her to "apologize for parody"... are they paying her wages or do they own the tv station she is employed by? i am not american, thus i do not know the business ins-and-outs of this, but one thing we certainly admire about america is your right to free speech, satire and parody.



    what's next? apple might as well threaten legal action when tech reviewers write a negative review of one of their products.
  • Reply 7 of 149
    xtss33xtss33 Posts: 25member
    Apple, you might have just sent a truck load of iPads over to the taping for a giveaway and come out on top of this one.
  • Reply 8 of 149
    8corewhore8corewhore Posts: 833member
    1- It doesn't sound funny. 2- Apple is stupid for complaining 3- She is stupid for apologizing.
  • Reply 9 of 149
    island hermitisland hermit Posts: 6,217member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by xtss33 View Post


    Apple, you might have just sent a truck load of iPads over to the taping for a giveaway and come out on top of this one.



    I second that!
  • Reply 10 of 149
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 19,051member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    Apple needs to put a little more polish on their public relations efforts. They're coming off as a bit bullying in the eyes of the public, at least that's the impression I've been getting (not my own feelings).



    I agree. The company needs to chill out a bit. (And that's my own feeling.)
  • Reply 11 of 149
    desuserigndesuserign Posts: 1,316member
    Oh come on.

    Who even says Apple officially contacted her? She's a comedian telling jokes. Apple would never seriously complain about a joke (although they might grumble about it.) Her apology is just a joke too.

    The only people who look stupid are those who take this whole thing seriously in any way whatsoever.
  • Reply 12 of 149
    rbryanhrbryanh Posts: 263member
    I assume the apology is as much a joke as the ad.
  • Reply 13 of 149
    yanlesinyanlesin Posts: 1member
    http://www.drivecellsafe.ca/







    Not sure why they use iPhone here...
  • Reply 14 of 149
    tofinotofino Posts: 697member
    if you're too stoopid to use an iphone, you shouldn't brag about it...



  • Reply 15 of 149
    g3prog3pro Posts: 669member
    Unbelievable. Apple needs thicker skin.
  • Reply 16 of 149
    paulmjohnsonpaulmjohnson Posts: 1,380member
    If it's true that Apple complained, the most sensible comments in this are those from the Endgadget editor.
  • Reply 17 of 149
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    Apple needs to put a little more polish on their public relations efforts. They're coming off as a bit bullying in the eyes of the public, at least that's the impression I've been getting (not my own feelings).



    I think a little too much is being read into this on one level and not enough on the other. Note that Ellen's "apology" included her playing the spoof again. I don't think David Letterman repeated the joke he made about Palin's daughter a second time before apologizing. Michael Richards didn't show a clip of his outburst prior to apologizing. I don't think Ellen crossed any legal boundaries as it looks like they made the clips themselves as demonstrated by input and Portia's reply.



    What I think may have happened is that Apple's PR made a phone call to Ellen's people about a completely legal but potential damaging spoof to an audience may not typically be the most tech savvy crowd. Perhaps all Apple's PR team did was request that Ellen make it clear that the iPhone is easy to use and perhaps pay her show a nice little fee and/or offer some nice Apple swag for the favour.



    PS: I found it very funny.
  • Reply 18 of 149
    stonefreestonefree Posts: 242member
    She's lucky Apple simply demanded an apology and didn't send the thought police after her. Repeat after me "Apple is perfect in every way". See roughlydrafted.com for more info.
  • Reply 19 of 149
    walshbjwalshbj Posts: 864member
    Ellen D. is nothing but a lousy prop comic. I agree with anyone who said it wasn't funny, Apple should have ignored it, she shouldn't have apologized.



    But she should apologize for being nothing but a lousy prop comic.
  • Reply 20 of 149
    corpunkcorpunk Posts: 12member
    Y'know, I'm not around to watch her show, never knew about this until I saw this article, now that I have seen it I find it pretty funny. She should have said something like "Please don't break down my door, please don't take my computers and my furniture away, I'm soooo sorry, really, I'll buy your stuff, whatever you want, just leave me alone!"
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