Hear, hear, to Steve Johnson of the Chicago Tribune for "An i for an I Has Left Us Ill at E's," published last week in the Los Angeles Times.
"The naming convention instigated by Apple's iPod is about to drive at least one consumer over the edge," the subhead warns.
First iMac, then iPod. Now there's a plague of "i" disease in the marketplace--iWake (clock/radio), iHome2Go (clock radio with portable alarm/speakers), iCarPlay, iCable, iStockPhoto, etc., etc., ad nauseam.
The problem, Johnson writes, is the way the lower-case letter "flouts the rules of English, in a way that's supposed to be rebellious but instead comes off as cutesy as a fudge store." He goes on:
The proper, capitalized I is a bold assertion. I am here. I stand straight and tall. I matter.
In the fey little vowel imposed upon us by the iPod, the self seems to be reduced to a mere whisper: i am sorry for imposing myself on you. i am insignificant. i listen to music as i walk around, but i do it with earphones on.
But it's a false humility. The essential quality of the iPod is narcissism: The world I can create in my head, through music or podcasts, is much more interesting than what you people can come up with. The iNames are an extension of that narcissism.
It's time to stop. It's time to say: e-nough.
Hat tip to brother Michael!