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back to article Cook invokes GHOST of STEVE JOBS in Apple-wide memo

To some he was the finest of all human beings, while to others he was just responsible for flogging a few overpriced computers. But while the world mourned the second anniversary of Steve Jobs' death on Saturday, Apple employees were left in no doubt about his legacy. The gushing statement that Tim Cook released to Apple …

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Joke

Propping up the company...

'Fruity firm's chief reminds workers that his 'spirit' is in, er, Apple's foundations'

As long as his body isn't.

Sorry, I should have used the bad taste joke of the week alert there.

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Anonymous Coward

Bit over the top

Still my wife and daughter have gold iPhones....

Offers please...

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Windows

Re: Offers please...

How old are they? All their own teeth? Good workers?

GJC

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Offers please...

How much?

Oh, you knew someone was going to do it. :)

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Re: Bit over the top

Playmobil, or they don't exist.

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Devil

Better the Devil you know

"He left behind a company that only he could have built and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple. We will continue to honour his memory by dedicating ourselves to the work he loved so much. There is no higher tribute to his memory. I know that he would be proud of all of you."

It sounds very much like Mr Cook is trying to keep his staff motivated and he is using "compassion" as the fuel. Pretty poor plot ......

"dedicating ourselves to the work he loved so much"

People go to work to earn money, not to idiolise or dedicate their lives others. ( Although that might actually be a requriement in NK) . Cook sounds like one of those crazy evangelists with very little, if anything, to offer, he must be in a permanent struggle to try and appear to be usefull.

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Gimp

@Khaptain

"People go to work to earn money, not to idiolise or dedicate their lives others."

Careful there. Under normal circumstances you're absolutely right, but do keep in mind that there are plenty of geeks out there to whom working at a high-end tech firm like Apple, Microsoft, or even a big service provider like Amazon will easily be bordering the classic "way of life" approach.

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Re: @Khaptain

That's a worrying thought........

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The page linked in the article had this comment:

"It was never even funny while he was alive, because Steve Jobs was always an extreme ego-maniacal selfish asshole, who never cared if he took credit for work that other people did, resulting in this ridiculous illusion people have of him being some kind of genius or visionary, when he was quite the opposite.

People like Steve Jobs should be put farther down on the list of famous humans, somewhere between Donald Trump and the Unabomber."

I guess not everyone sees him through the same spectacles as Mr. Cook.

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Funny how people who knew him liked him and people who never knew or even met him hated him.

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From what can be gleaned from the interwebs and various other accounts, it would appear that not liking Steve was not a good career move if you were one of his subordinates.

Did you personally meet him ? Are all those accounts in the web wrong ? Was Steve Jobs really a philanthropist in disguise ?

.

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Mushroom

@LarsG

Funny how people who knew him liked him and people who never knew or even met him hated him.

This might have something to do with it:

"Writing for the New York Times, Andrew Sorkin was puzzled that he couldn’t find any evidence that Steve Jobs, Apple’s founder, had given away any part of his significant $8.3 billion personal wealth. What he did find is that when Jobs returned to his old company in 1997, he canceled Apple’s philanthropic programs and they have remained dormant ever since.

Sorkin explained: “None of this is meant to judge Mr. Jobs. I have long been a huge admirer of Mr. Jobs…because of the enormous positive impact his products have had by improving the lives of millions of people through technology…. But the lack of public philanthropy by Mr. Jobs…raises some important questions about the way public views business and business people at a time when some ‘millionaires and billionaires’ are criticized for not giving back enough while others like Mr. Jobs are lionized.”

He then compares Jobs’ stinginess to the generosity of Bill Gates and Warren Buffet in establishing a foundation to “enhance healthcare and reduce extreme poverty” around the world. The unstated question to Mr. Jobs in Sorkin’s article is: Why not you, Mr. Jobs?"

And I particularly like this part:

"Part of the answer may be that Jobs feels he can make a better contribution to reducing poverty by making Apple more successful through its innovative technological breakthroughs".

Sure ended HIS poverty.

http://lightfromtheright.com/2011/09/10/steve-jobs%E2%80%99-charitable-contributions-gave-office/

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Hmm.... Then why are they so busy burying everything he stood for?

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Well

At least we've been spared turning their website into an obituary as it was on the first anniversary.

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Anonymous Coward

Are we sure he's really dead?

Only he seems to have a very active PR campaign going, you can barely read any news outlet anywhere without his name being on it somewhere.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Are we sure he's really dead?

At least he is more dead than Elvis.

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Alien

Re: Are we sure he's really dead?

Steve Jobs found on Moon!

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"He left behind a company that only he could have built and kept running and his ..."

There, fixed that for you, Cook.

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They buried him in the basement?

Just wondering....

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"...his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple."

If Apple collapses, will they blame him for holding it wrong?

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Anonymous Coward

Claiming to be a Buddhist while railing against employees, insulting, screaming, and firing people for the slightest of offenses is hardly synonymous.

Well, unless you are in the Apple Marketing department where an iPhone is "revolutionary" every six months.

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Anonymous Coward

He's dead.

Move on.

This reminds me of the middle aged shoe salesman in the strip mall who continuously brings up scoring the winning touchdown in high school, as that's his only accomplishment.

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WTF?

Seriously?

"But while the world mourned the second anniversary of Steve Jobs' death on Saturday"

No, it didn't. In fact, the vast majority of the world couldn't possibly care any less.

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WTF?

Also Seriously?

Seriously? He left the world a better place? Because it has some overpriced aluminum wrapped tech goods?

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Shouldn't "He" and "His" be capitalised?

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Big Brother

"He left behind a company that only he could have built and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple. " (my emphasis)

Do you think they realize Woz is still alive?

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Jobs was the one who suggested creating a business out of making and selling computers. If Woz had had his way, Apple would never have happened and it's doubtful if Woz would be as well-known today.

Jobs was the driving force behind Apple from its inception. Woz clearly wanted so little to do with it that he effectively left the company as a full-time employee in 1987. (Apple still pays him a $120K / year salary and Woz also has stocks in the company.)

The philanthropy issue is interesting: Jobs' widow has stated that Jobs did donate to charity, but preferred to do so anonymously.

And consider how many people have jobs because of Apple: not just Apple's own employees, but the thousands of developers, support businesses and all those involved in the production and distribution chains. In today's economy, having a steady income is very much a Good Thing. This is as much a benefit of Apple as any amount of pissing money into the black holes of the WWF, Oxfam and their ilk.

It's also worth mentioning that donating to charity is often considered an excellent way to reduce your tax burden. This is one of the most popular reasons for a business to donate money. Altruism often has bugger all to do with it.

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What a guy

Don't forget Chinese people not clever enough to jump off roofs without guidance.

Is it Suttee or is it iSati, anyway, Apple invented it.

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Spit!

This has got to be one of the most syrupy, obsequious, sycophantic, vomit-inducing comments about anyone I have ever heard. The guy was obviously a ruthless, charmless, humourless money-grabber, seemingly devoid of most social skills (according to many reports) and I would suspect he never really had any sort of life outside of Apple.

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Re: Spit!

You might want to read the Techies with Asperger's article elsewhere on the site before making such comments. There's strong evidence that Jobs had mental health issues and I suspect that those who hated him were mostly people who couldn't make allowances for that. Even as a child, he tended to think digitally: everything was either "awesome" or "shit". There was never any middle ground. So those traits were there right from the start.

Asperger's (or some other part of the Autism spectrum) would certainly explain a lot, as would OCD.

That said...

Apple has been the biggest contributor to the "Product Red" charity for some time now, so the notion that Apple never donated any money at all under Steve's watch is patent nonsense. Jobs' estate has also pointed out that they preferred to donate anonymously.

Jonathan Ive, Tim Cook, and many, many others at Apple have had plenty of opportunities to leave the company and either go work for others, or set out on their own. (Some have, in fact, done precisely that, as a .look at Woz's full CV will attest.) Furthermore, some Apple people left, then willingly chose to return.

Let me repeat that, in case you missed it: these people chose to work at Apple with Steve Jobs. Jobs was in charge of Apple for 13 years or so. Jony Ive was hired in the early '90s – long after Jobs' initial departure and some years before his return. Yet he, too, chose to stay and work with Jobs.

Thirteen years is plenty of time for all those people to update their CVs and send them out. So what stopped them? Did Jobs hire heavies to point guns at their heads? Did he kidnap their families? If Jobs was truly the complete arsehole he's often made out to be by his detractors, why didn't all those people who worked for him leave?

The man clearly inspired a surprising amount of loyalty from his friends, so he must have had something going for him. He was even married to the same woman for 20 years, with whom he'd had three children, when he died. If he was that hard a man to work with, how did that happen? When they married in 1991, Pixar's first success was still four years away and NeXT was hardly a money-spinner either, so Laurene Powell certainly didn't marry him for his money.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Spit!

If someone is being an arsehole because of mental health issues they are still being an arsehole. I don't have to like (or even make allowances for) someone being an arsehole no matter what the reason.

Go ahead, flame/downvote me for being an arsehole myself, you are allowed to!

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M7S
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@Sean Timmarco Baggaley - "Yet he, too, chose to stay and work with Jobs."

I don't know the details of the case, but if I had a new boss arrive who was a pillock, and I had relatively non-transferable skills (for example being a paramedic) and a family to provide for, I might elect to stay. It's not an endorsement of my new boss or their views, its living as most people do, in the real world.

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Re: @Sean Timmarco Baggaley - "Yet he, too, chose to stay and work with Jobs."

Seriously? Tim Cook – whose core skill set is in optimising supply chains – has "non-transferrable skills"? Jony Ive had his own UK-based design company ("Tangerine") before he moved to California to work for Apple. With his reputation, I doubt he'd struggle to find clients if he decided to strike out on his own again. So why didn't he do that?

Quite a few people did leave Apple. Some of them came back. How can that be if Jobs was such a git?

Jobs' own friends have described him as "mercurial", but that's hardly a unique trait in a CEO. You have to be pretty ruthless to turn a company from a near-bankrupt basket case into the most successful business on the planet in just ten years.

Most of the people who give the keynotes at Apple launches today could have left at any time – the likes of Ive and Federighi could easily write their own tickets given their track records – yet they haven't done so. They have chosen not to do so. Jony Ive wasn't even a Jobs hire: he was already at Apple long before Jobs returned and had never worked as an employee of either NeXT or Pixar. So you can't claim cronyism either.

So, again: if Jobs was such a nasty piece of work, why the hell did so many people who could have easily walked right into a new job (or set up on their own) choose to stay and work with him?

Answer: he wasn't as big an "asshole" as he's made out to be – usually by people who never actually met him, or spent any substantial time with him. Jobs was certainly a control freak and a perfectionist, so it's not difficult to see why he hated doing anything that he could not have any control over. He practiced some of those keynotes for weeks.

Reporters and journalists tend to be interested in people, but Jobs didn't talk about himself much. He was no Richard Branson, whose entire career has mostly involved blowing his own trumpet and pimping his "Virgin" brand. The latter gave good interviews, but Branson is unlikely to go down in history as anything other than a famous, self-publicising beard who got very lucky and milked it for all it was worth.

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