Apple consumers are complaining that the company is ignoring their complaints about the anti-reflective MacBook coating peeling off in whacking great ugly patches.
Ever-eager to embrace now-meaningless suffixes and lazy journalistic shorthand, the upset Apple boys and girls have dubbed this issue "Staingate", with a domain for the rather well-designed site registered only last Wednesday, all to bring attention to their plight.
Staingate describes itself as "a group of Apple customers that paid more than 2000 USD/EUR for a MacBook that is showing horrific stains in the screen".
These "horrific" stains have been reported developing "as early as seven months after the purchase. There is no clear pattern as to how it starts: some experience it in small spots around the edge, on other screens it appears in the middle as large patches".
Complaints have been mounting in the Apple Support Communities forum for a while, but have often been dismissed as a result of improper cleaning attempts and responded to with a link to Apple's cleaning guide.
However, one source let The Reg know how not much longer than a year after he bought his MacBook, he "started noticing a strange stain in the upper black border that surrounds the screen".
"I have always cleaned my MacBook with just a special cloth, no water, no nothing. You can imagine that you can't go wrong cleaning a $2800 computer," said our man, who searched the web for relevant information but only found complaints on forums about Apple's responses.
On the Apple Community Support forums, user jcele disputed improper cleaning, and claims the coating came off after wiping the screen “with a lint-free cloth”.
The individual who contacted The Reg about his experiences (who's associated with Staingate) claims – as with jcele – that the stain was not produced by a failure to follow Apple's cleaning guidelines, as the "stain appeared by itself, and when I tried to clean it using the soft cloth [it] started to spread".
When he contacted Apple support by phone, the fruity firm told him "that my laptop warranty is due, so basically they can't do anything. Then I contacted the company via chat [and] it suggested I go to an Apple partner [where] I left the laptop for three days ... and the response was that this was cosmetic damage, [hence] not covered by the warranty".
The "cosmetic damage" complaint is echoed on the Staingate site. "These are very small stains that start to grow. Honestly, it feels like your screen has some kind of bacteria or cancer or something," our source said.
The Register contacted Apple, but has not received a response as of publication. ®