HK tech magazine slams Apple for impacting the right-to-know

A Hong Kong-based Chinese-language weekly magazine PC Market (PCM) said Thursday Apple canceled a confirmed interview because of a review on the new iPad published on Mar 12.

The review is a cover story for the print version of the weekly publication. According to , the review -- by a PCM journalist -- was done on a new iPad owned by an anonymous source. One of the of the online version of the story shows that the device is a 4G LTE 16G model for AT&T in the US. While the 4G model is not yet available even for pre-order in Hong Kong, PCM said it has no idea where and how the source obtained the device.

Though the review was done before the product was available to consumers, PCM said the coverage on the features of the new iPad doesn't deviate from the facts given by Apple. "We did the review based on readers' right-to-know," the statement reads. "We publish this statement to reflect our serious protest against Apple's cancellation of the confirmed interview which we believe has left a negative impact on the right-to-know."

"Apple called my colleague up on Mar 13 -- one day after the publication of the review -- and canceled an interview originally scheduled for Friday [Mar 16] when the new iPad will be available in Hong Kong's Apple Store," said a PCM editor. "Apple cited our publication of the new iPad review as the reason for the cancelation."

According to that PCM editor, Apple confirmed and canceled the interview with her colleague via the phone, thus leaving no email contact. "The PR representative didn't even mention if that was a group or one-on-one interview." As Apple has no PR team in Hong Kong, all local media inquiries are handled by Apple in-house PR staff in Beijing, China. Computerworld Hong Kong sent an email inquiry to Apple's Beijing office on Thursday. There was no reply from the firm by press time.

The PCM editor also noted that Apple only invited a few selected journalists from Hong Kong to its iPad launch held on Mar 7 in San Francisco where the journalists signed a non-disclosure agreement that allowed them to publish new iPad-related stories as early as Mar 15. PCM wasn't among the media invited by Apple, the editor added.