Apple's overzealous removal of threads isn't just limited to talking about unfixed bugs. In 2010, a negative Consumer Reports article about the iPhone 4 (because of its antenna problems) sparked a slew of threads on the Apple forums. Many were deleted, but a few survived. "We've heard so many reports about [Apple deleting discussion board threads on topics that are unflattering to Apple's products] that it seems safe to call this standard operating procedure for Apple's discussion boards," wrote T.J. Luoma on Tuaw.com at the time.
And even as far back as 2007, when Jack Schofield of the Guardian discussed the issue, he mentioned that thread removal had by then been a long-established tradition for the Apple forums.
"It's always possible that Apple is removing 'rants' that are not helping users solve their problems," Schofield wrote. "It's also possible that Apple is unusually touchy, given that its 'switch' advertising might mislead innocents into thinking that Mac users really don't have any problems."
Not everyone believes Apple is wholly out of line for deleting complaint-laden threads from its boards. "Since there's no freedom of speech on someone else's dime, that's the way it goes," wrote Rene Ritchie at iMore.com. But he was convinced the concern over the antenna issue was entirely warranted, and that there were better ways to deal with the problem.
The "Community etiquette" page for the Apple Support Communities states that posters should "post only technical support questions and answers, unless otherwise noted" and "Avoid speculation and rumors." But if a great many people are having the same problem, and can't help but bring it up when looking for an answer, that hardly seems like justification to throw a wet blanket over the whole issue.
This story, "Apple censors Lawrence Lessig's discussion of iOS 7 Wi-Fi problems," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Get the first word on what the important tech news really means with the InfoWorld Tech Watch blog. For the latest developments in business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.