Date: Sat, 28 Mar 1998 11:31:07 -0600
Subject: Re: Think Different

Barry initiated:

There's a very large Apple "Think Different" billboard near my home
at t$ corner of Third Avenue and 59th Street.
Actually, shouldn't that be "Think Differently"?
And does Apple really want people who "Think Different"? If I send
out a resume written with crayons, do I have the job??

Then Greg Pulliam suggested:

I've never thought of the "different" as an adverb modifying
"think." This is a construction where "different" represents the goal (not
in the linguistic sense, mind you).
I think it's a great slogan, though--simple, elegant, and subversive.

Bethany commented:

It still shocks me to flip over an issue of the NYorker and see that Apple
ad "Think Different." Greg., if all those freshmen comp. students we
have been discussing write "One should think different" in an essay, will
we all extoll the simplicity, the elegance, and the subversion?

So, Bethany, you're saying that an ad campaign has the power to cause our
students to write this way in their papers? Perhaps we should all quit
teaching freshman comp, and start putting up billboards instead.

But seriously, Apple did not say "One should think different." Apple said
"Think Different." As in a comedy writer's admonition to her co-worker to
"Think Funny." This sort of construction has been around for many, many
years, and I doubt that it can be blamed for the widespread loss of
abverbial inflection that is occurring in English.

I would not ban the phrase, but I would not be able to repress a shudder.
I really hate the ad campaign; I think it is a PR disaster at a time when
my beloved Apple can ill afford a PR disaster.

Well, the "PR disaster" has seen the value of Apple's stock rise almost 50%
over the last several months. Here's hoping for a long string of such

Long live Apple.