Date: Sat, 28 Mar 1998 12:55:58 -0500
From: "Bethany K. Dumas" dumasb[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]UTK.EDU
Subject: Re: Think Different/Read Clearly

On Sat, 28 Mar 1998, Greg Pulliam asked:

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?

No, I have clearly not said that. I asked a hypothetical question about
how we would view the construction if we met it in a comp class.

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 am aware that the ad says "Think different" (I see it EVERYWHERE!). And
I have never suggested that there is a correlation between Apple's slogan
and any syntactic change occuring in English

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

Greg, I am a real skeptic about correlation and causality. I am aware that
Apple's sales have incresaed, and I am delighted. But -- I am dubious that
it is because of the use of the phrase "Think different."

Long live Apple.


Bethany, Apple/Mac user since 1986