Apple can ignore the bloggers, but perhaps it can't dismiss the views of Jon Stewart, perhaps the most influential left-leaning satirist in the US and a man well-known to the 'Mac demographic'.

Stewart used an episode of his TV show, The Daily Show, to berate Apple for last week's police raid on the house of Gizmodo writer, Jason Chen, after the journalist leaked details of the next iPhone, a prototype of which had come into his possession.

Apple asked for Chen to return the phone, and California police later raided his home, leaving behind a wake of controversy that has seen Apple and law enforcement alike condemned for their heavy-handedness.

"Apple - you guys were the rebels, man, the underdogs. People believed in you. But now, are you becoming the man? Remember back in 1984, you had those awesome ads about overthrowing Big Brother? Look in the mirror, man!," said Stewart.

"You guys are busting down doors in Palo Alto while Commandant Gates is ridding the world of mosquitoes. What the f**k is going on?

UK readers can view the episode here.

Stewart's show is shown in the UK on Channel 4, where it has a cult following among the intelligentisia desperately looking a way of shining a light into the opaque and usually unfunny partisan battles that characterise current US politics. People listen to Stewart.

The launch of the next iPhone could yet become a publicity disaster if Chen ends up being charged and his case is turned into a cause célèbre. Judging by the 1,200 news stories connected to Stewart's comments on Google, Apple might have cause to hope the matter goes no further.