In a biting commentary on the iPhone 5 reviews from American consumer technology media outlets, 'Saturday Night Live' captures a global cultural divide.
NBC's "Saturday Night Live" delivered a strong portrayal of a whining American culture that is beset by mass convenience and by widespread technological advances and that is shaped by the observations of media outlets that seek to frame the divide between that which is perishable and that which can endure.
Apple's iPhone 5 device is perhaps the best example of this framing. Consider this recent story from Slate's Farhad Manjoo on the "miracle" that the iPhone 5 has only recently become.
The SNL team, fashioned through a parody of the technology programming that exists in the periphery of American cable television, crafted a "TechTalk" skit that featured editorial voices from CNET, Wired, and Gizmodo.
The iPhone 5 is put through this judgement panel and each feature is aligned with a failure. The mapping service is not up to snuff; the applications load too slowly; the device itself is too thin and too light. These are the running commentaries that we have read and seen at length, and yet we are not marveling at the "miracle" of the device until maybe a new device comes along.
But meanwhile, and with the proper SNL bite, there are people everywhere else in the world - in this case, China - who are working in deplorable conditions to deliver a product or service for a Western end consumer that has long ago lost any appreciation.