Steve called out the blue one afternoon and said "Hi Martin, this is Steve." Martin had worked with Steve in his early days at Apple before Steve's departure. "Hi Steve." "Look, we know you've been sending emails to Henry Norr who works at MacWeek. We can't read them because they are encrypted, but you better have an explanation of why you are talking to journalists." "He is in my running group. That's it." "That's it?" "Yep, that's it." "OK, make sure it stays that way." and Steve hung up. Martin was flustered by this call so got up and left his office. In the hallway were his manager and a couple security goons just standing around. "Hey." "Hey." and he went off to the restroom. When he came back the goons were gone. It never came up again.
I miss Martin.
edit: [Spellcheck corrected "Minow" to "Minnow" and I failed to notice. You should find plenty more hits on "Martin Minow"]
I think this part is key and is something I've always wondered about:
>While it may seem flattering to be approached, it’s important to remember that you’re getting played. The success of these outsiders is measured by obtaining Apple’s secrets from you and making them public. A scoop about an unreleased Apple product can generate massive traffic for a publication and financially benefit the blogger or reporter who broke it. But the Apple employee who leaks has everything to lose.
I completely understand what's in it for the reporter, but I've never understood what the employee gets out of it. I've been reading Mark Gurman's scoops about Apple for years so I'm definitely biased in wanting that to continue. It just seems like there's tons of upside for the reporter and only downside for the leaker.
Also I wonder what goes through a reporter's head when one of their sources get fired because they leaked to them. I'd feel extremely guilty if someone was fired or prosecuted because of me. Not sure how they do it.
The intelligence services have done a great deal of research into the persona of the press leaker/Wikileaks leaker (as distinct from the more traditional espionage leaker). A common trait is for the press leaker to be either highly over-qualified for their job or believe themselves to be over-qualified for their job. The belief coming out of that research is a sense of being under appreciated and a deep need to be recognized by someone (even themselves) for something they’ve done is the primary motivation for this class of leaker. The “leaking good and important things” blanket that the leaks are wrapped in then becomes a secondary factor that is used by the leaker to justify their actions to themselves in their quest for the recognition they need. I doubt if corporate press leakers have been studied as heavily as intelligence sector leakers, but the chances are good there are some similar motivations at play.
The leakers that come to mind immediately are Edward Snowden and Chelsea Manning whom both suffered greatly for their leaks (Snowden had to leave his life behind and Manning was kept in isolation and had her medical needs neglected amongst other things). While they both may have wanted to be recognized as having done something good, they also clearly wanted to let the public know what the government was doing in their name.
As an example there's a short discussion in the recent movie The Post where Post reporters are trying to figure out who leaked the Pentagon Papers. Ben Bagdikian says something like these guys are always a bit of a showboat and it leads him to remember Ellsberg at Rand.
EDIT to add: the CIA is interested in why people leak because the #1 job of the CIA is to create leakers in other countries.
You mention locking people up, but that is not the CIA's job. The FBI is the counter-intelligence lead in the U.S.
The CIA only locks up brown people and tortures them in Thailand (star). It refers US leakers to the FBI which throws them into lonely prisons, terrifies, and abuses them.
EDIT: (star) Or rather it did. That's what Gina Haspel, our new CIA director nominee, is famous for.
A conflict of interest would be relevant, in different ways, if it was current with the events that the movie is about, or if the movie was produced by the Post.
But neither of those is true, sonit seems to be a non-sequitur.
Hollywood has a long history of entanglement with the CIA and DoD in general. (How do you think so many war movies get access to equipment?) The Post was produced by Stephen Spielberg, an entertainer, not a typical careful documentarian. The social purpose of the movie is to soothe liberals at a time when their minds are being fractured by DJT and cries of "fake news". I wouldn't put it past Hollywood and the military to take this prime opportunity to insert propaganda via framing and selection of quotes.
Of course, I can't prove it that this is how this quote came to be, but what I can with certainty is to be skeptical of taking away core moral and factual positions from mass political entertainment and be doubly skeptical of claims (referring to the original claim sans movie) that come from the intelligence services (whose job it is to lie cheat and steal, duh).
EDIT: Here's an example of the CIA getting involved in the movie business https://www.salon.com/2015/09/11/the_cias_insidious_hollywoo...
They are a great example of an organization hiring the best and brightest, only to be dimmed by org and political structures.
This is not a recent thing. I believe they blew up a Russian refinery with a sweet exploit in he 80s. But other than that, I’m not sure why anyone would see them other than a bumbling comedy of politics.
To be fair, that is also a reason why they would have a motive to spread misinformation about what they believe motivates leakers, since information about their beliefs on that matter give target nations clues to both actual vulnerabilities and CIAs likely means of attempting to exploit them.
Joking aside. I think the difference lies in how easily an adversary can refute the information. You can just call up a library or an embassy to verify most claims in the world factbook. How would you get access to a wide selection of leakers?
also, just because an adversary is denying information does not mean that they themselves are being truthful.
After throwing out the all but three of the original 100 people saying one of the other 9 were the best skin cream.
People have been trying much harder and more successfully to discredit Snowden using other arguments.
The characterisation actually makes me more hopeful for the future of whistle blowing.
I never understood why Snowden and Manning are put on equal footing in that regard.
Now granted, the mission plans would have been pretty interesting to the other team (I almost wrote the word enemy, but I don't believe that to be accurate, but that's irrelevant to this post), but those were printed out and ended up laying around on desks, all the platoon leaders / platoon sergeants had them, and despite best efforts to keep track of that stuff it is never 100%.
Granted, Chelsea may have had WAY more access than I did, I'm not trying to speak about things I have no facts regarding. I am trying to say that I find it VERY hard to believe that an E-4 intel soldier (or even most O-6's, to be honest) would have access to anything that could compromise field intelligence activities or actionable information about the goings on with special forces teams. The overwhelming majority of the information we had on SIPR (basically the 'secret' internet for USG, the computers with red cables coming out of them) relevant to the local theater of operations was an insanely disorganized mess of reports following missions, almost none of which had anything juicy in them.
Having become a software engineer and math guy after getting out of the service, looking back on the "information" available to US and allied commanders in Afghanistan I'm 100% certain that my current boss would fire me for delivering such a mess.
EDIT Looked up Manning's unit level:
Full Disclosure: Chelsea Manning worked in a Brigade level S-2 (intel section), and I was only at Battalion, so she definitely had better systems / access than I did. I still doubt she could find out what Jason Bourne was up to.
No. Foreign agents or sources working with US intelligence (which are not the same as operatives) maybe.
The strongest common trait in leakers is belief. They believe in something. They aren't willing to sit back and witness some people damage society as a whole.
Manning at least spent her day in court. Yeah they are different, Snowden was a coward. If he truly did it for the good of the world, he'd turn himself in because of the reward he has already gotten by sharing information he felt like the world needed.
" If he truly did it for the good of the world, he'd turn himself in because of the reward he has already gotten by sharing information he felt like the world needed."
This is offensively manipulative nonsense. Wanting to avoid being thrown in a hole and tortured is a normal human response and utterly orthogonal to whether his motives were pure or not.
Here is some stateside coverage analyzing why he did something so stupid:
"In the bigger scale of things, Sino-US relations outweigh any information Snowden may have. It is also impractical for China to hope Snowden will co-operate with us. If he wanted to do that, he'd have flown to Beijing," said an expert in Shanghai who requested anonymity."
Looks more like he revealed that we were spying on everyone and ran to Hong Kong because they were a neutral party and you want to spin this into he sold us out to the Chinese to me.
Why did he reveal Chinese telecom targets then? The "expert in Shanghai" is clearly wrong from Snowden's perspective. Hong Kong is outside the Great Firewall and so Snowden felt less hypocritical living in Hong Kong, but it is still under Chinese rule, so he hoped to get Chinese protection by leaking state secrets to them.
You must be heavily influenced by things you’ve read/heard others say.
As a human being - just imagine what you might do... Perhaps you’ll begin to realise how palpably absurd your suggestion that someone must be a coward for not taking their beating is.
Shocker, people have different opinions on the internet. Most intelligent people do in fact think for themselves.
> You must be heavily influenced by things you’ve read/heard others say.
I'm heavily influenced by taking the same oath as he once did and Manning did. You are given a choice to have a TS/SCI clearance, you can say "no thanks" at many many points in the process. Once given that choice it is up to you do decide whether or not you follow the rules you signed up for. He chose to be treasonous, much like Manning. I'm not arguing about whether that choice was the right one or not, that does not matter. Unlike Manning, he gave intelligence away to foreign countries in hopes they would protect him and he didn't have his day in court. He life is ruined because his plan backfired, that is on him, no one else.
So yes, I'm heavily influenced, but by experiences I know about, unlike most. He committed treason, that fact is inarguable, and I believe he should've stayed home and argued his case in court. Manning did, she is now a free woman.
I know I'm not going to change your mind, that isn't my intention, but I'm also going to defend my own intelligence. Lifetip: not everyone who disagrees with you is a moron. Have a nice day.
I'd assume most intelligence services love leakers. They just want to be the recipient, not the source.
> The intelligence services have done a great deal of research into the persona of the press leaker/Wikileaks leaker
Taught in a counterintelligence 101 type class, there's generally four types of intel leak. Not always mutually exclusive, sometimes there's a combination of factors influencing the behavior of any single person.
Money - for financial gain. Robert Hanssen would be one example.
Ideology - Typical cold war stuff, a person that deeply believes in the political ideology of power group A becomes a mole inside opposing political group B.
Conscience - Something happening is deeply wrong and unjust in the view of the leaker. Snowden.
Ego - Sometimes combined with the Money part. The persons receiving the intel find a way to flatter the ego of the leaker, about how important their role is on a grand strategic level.
The leaks an Apple employee makes is about inconsequential stuff like what features the next iPhone will have. It's not even in the same ballpark as someone who is leaking something illegal going on at the company or someone at Facebook leaking the Boz memo, for example.
“I’m working on really cool / inconsequential shit. But I can’t tell you about it. Maybe we can catch up next year and I can tell you what I did”
“I work at Apple”
just stay home.
Personally, I wouldn't think that the leakers were getting paid. Even if they were, I imagine the amount that these particular online web sites are able to pay is very much -- especially when compared to the average Apple employee's salary.
This makes me think that money isn't the primary motivating factor, if it is a factor at all.
you can’t really buy that
Also somehow I doubt that newsrooms are making enough money to pay $100,000 (or any money for that matter) for random tidbits about products that don't really matter in the grand scheme of things.
The cyberpunk dna in me thanks you for this.
Sounds like how a sociopath would interpret the motivations of a good person.
Edward Snowden and someone who leaks an upcoming iPhone's rounded edges are not in the same category.
An example from this week. Someone was asking about the usual questions. Stuff on our website that I can comfortably answer. Then they casually led the conversation to the tech side in appreciation that I'm an engineer doing a great job. He eventually asked, "what feature in your latest release are you the most proud of?" I badly want to tell you because it's fucking cool stuff. But I won't because you're an investor for our competition.
Another great source is the airplane ride to the show. I've heard of at least one tech columnist that would watch people working on laptop presentations on the flights and pick up all kinds of scoops.
Pay attention to someone if they keep stuttering or "forgetting key" parts of the statement they're making, getting others to fill in the blanks is one of the easiest ways since our minds just want to do that. So you intentionally pretend to have difficulty remembering what you're saying and let the other person tell you.
1. Immediate Financial - They either have a direct quid-pro-quo with the leak recipient, or stand to benefit directly from the leak.
2. Disagreement with the direction/decision-making - They want Apple to do something different, and internal (legitimate) attempts to influence this decision have failed; usually because the leaker doesn't have the political capital.
3. Vanity/Ego - More of a contributing factor to #2, but they want a feeling of power that comes from leaking.
4. Trolling - A subset of #3 really. Some people just want to watch the world burn.
5. Revenge - Feeling screwed out of a promotion, or otherwise neglected? Leak!
6. Low self-esteem - If you're approached by a reporter or blogger, having something of value is a way to boost yourself.
Reporting a CEO embezzling is whistleblowing. Announcing apple is working on a new gizmo is not. Don't conflate them.
I think your definition is of a whistleblower is too narrow, and I prefer the fuller definition from wikipedia:
"A whistleblower (also written as whistle-blower or whistle blower) is a person who exposes any kind of information or activity that is deemed illegal, unethical, or not correct within an organization that is either private or public."
"not correct within an organization" clearly applies to the #2 in my list.
so some of them are good?
Personally, I’d be interested if someone leaked the CIA’s research into online trolls. Something tells me you wouldn’t consider that person a saint ;)
There's four reasons people leak information:
1. Out of moral responsibility to report unsafe or illegal activity.
2. To cause direct harm to the root organization because they feel slighted by some action in the past.
3. The "leak" is officially sanctioned as part of a submarine.
Numbers 3 and 4 are the biggies.
> Are media organizations like 9to5mac (mentioned in Apple's memo) paying Apple insiders for the information they provide?
> Personally, I wouldn't think that the leakers were getting paid. Even if they were, I imagine the amount that these particular online web sites are able to pay is very much -- especially when compared to the average Apple employee's salary.
Let's take the memo linked in TFA, for example. Just how much can we expect Bloomberg might pay for a copy of this memo? I can't imagine that it would be very much at all -- certainly not enough to make it worth the risk of being caught.
> This makes me think that money isn't the primary motivating factor, if it is a factor at all.
How much would a hardware manufacturer be willing to pay to get specs of the latest iPhone in advance so their accessories can be out in the market before anyone else?
What about a competitor who wants to know more about the company's future releases.
All of this happens, and companies have to work to prevent it.
Yeah, you're right.
I was focusing on leaks to media/news sites but that's because the Apple memo seemed to focus on that as well (e.g., "The employee who leaked the meeting to a reporter ...", "Instead, people who work for Apple are often targeted by press, analysts and bloggers ...", and so on), although they did specifically mention leaks "in the supply chain" too.
Leaking/selling company information to a competitor or rival is obviously a concern as well but I think this memo is pretty clearly aimed at those who might consider leaking to the press.
I'm guessing that it's very much against Bloomberg's ethics policies to pay anything at all.
In addition, paying sources for information could lead to "fake" or incorrect information being provided to the media by "leakers" who are simply in need of money.
Saying leaked out of “ego” is equivalent to saying it was leaked “because”. We know it was something internal to the leaker’s psyche, but research should help us understand what led up to that point and how it could have been avoided.
For example, would you say a gossiper gossips because of “ego”?
They can also be extremely manipulative. Like pretending they know something already, and so its ok to comment on it, OR they say they are going to print with something that is wrong and damaging for the company. For example the next iPhone only has 6 GB of storage. You can either not confirm that, or you correct them, and say "I think you mean 600 GB", at which point you just leaked a major new feature.
So if Apple or Facebook wants leaks to stop happening they need to reverse course and stop the unofficial mandate to connect the world or get a device into every person’s hands.
These things are becoming global phenomenon pervasive in nearly everyone’s lives and yet they demand a near total lack of transparency of how they operate. Seems hypocritical and unfair at best and maybe unethical or immoral at worst.
Massive organizations and businesses, people and families rely on these things so they at least should have some insight into their operation.
For employees it was like they were doing favors for their friend, and the things they were asking were generally pretty small, but could increase over time.
We were warned about this happening since it happened before, so I'm sure similar techniques that worked 20 years ago still work today. It's just a form of social engineering.
I'm not sure how many reporters have done jail time to protect their sources, but I'm sure that more than a few have been threatened with it.
Reporters cultivate relationships with sources and sharing some inside information can come to be seen as just helping out a friend with some tidbit that doesn't really hurt anything.
Furthermore, there can be an ego thing around sharing things you know that other people don't.
They may get money?
Some of these companies have valuation in hundreds of billions, and a small bit of news can nudge that +/- 0.5-2% or more which could be a couple billions dollars. If you own just 0.1% of the stock, that would be several $m opportunity . So, paying your informer, say, $100K or something, sounds reasonable, if you can execute it properly, even accounting for fake informers.
Revenge against a real or imaginary slight, by senior managers, or even their own line manager.
It seems they are still pining for that "shock-and-awe" of Steve Jobs original 2007 iPhone introduction, but don't realize that's no why people buy Apple products these days.
Think of the negative repercussions of this. Creating a hermit kingdom, with chilling effects where people worry about collaboration with the outside world. It has certainly had some effect on the ability to recruit AI researchers.
The more you can hide from them, the more of a head start you can have over them.
Really, I think the world would be better if they published more openly and were more open, and I don't think it would really hurt their ability to outsell their competitors at all. Let's say they're working on AR glasses (which they probably are) and Samsung catches wind of this and rushes to market with Samsung AR glasses. How many Apple fans actually think this will make a difference to people in the Apple ecosystem buying Apple AR glasses?
At this point I think the secrecy does more harm than good.
Apples success is built on unique inventions, in design, software and hardware. They rarely are first to market in any category. They are almost always first to market with the first mass market useful combination of features in those categories.
That is to say, TouchID capacitive fingerprint scanning was going to be shipped in Android first and Apple delayed the market introduction with a strategic acquisition.
Prior devices like the Motorola Atrix and Toshiba G500 also had fingerprint biometrics.
I would know, I had the same style fingerprint sensor that you see on the Atrix or the G500 on my laptop, and it was terrible.
Literally the only Google results for a search regarding Authentic and the Moto X1 is this thread and your comment.
Well, Apple had to backtrack there and allow its researchers to publish because otherwise nobody would work there.
Take for example the idea that other companies copied Apple's thin bezels. The predecessors for that were the Sharp Aquous, Xiaomi Mix, Samsung Galaxy S8, and Essential Phone. Samsung even had "True Tone" long before Apple started marketing it, but were accused of copying it.
I favor Kirby Ferguson's take on this (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wq5D43qAsVg), and we are better served by companies taking designs from others and improving on them, and open publishing and sharing, and the incessant cry of "Redmond Start Your Copiers" is really wearing thin.
(giving leakers heart attacks is a hobby of mine)
Always thought that’s the best way to narrow down the leaks. Give variations of info to subgroups, and target the group based on which variant was leaked.
Specifically, I noted one place where I thought a comma should normally have been. Perhaps it's "paranoia", but it seemed like that is one possible "variation" that could have been used.
I don't know how many Apple employees would view this memo (it seems unlikely that all ~135,000 would) but it doesn't seem like it would take very many slight differences like this to be able to generate a unique version of this memo for each viewer.
At that point, Apple just has to sit back and wait for the memo to leak. Compare the version of the memo posted in TFA to the "unique versions" rendered to the employees and you've either identified the leaker or, at the very least, significantly narrowed down the possibilities.
If Bloomberg were being careful, they would attempt to obtain copies of the memo from multiple "leakers" and compare them very carefully before publishing, making sure to look for these minute differences between them. If any were found, they'd have to be very diligent when posting the memo for all the world to see -- if they were being careful and if they cared about protecting the leaker's identity (one would assume they do but I think it'd be safe to assume there's a limit to how far they're willing to go).
Regardless, it's pretty clear that this is a huge attempt by Apple to deter any leakers or potential leakers from doing so.
> Specifically, I noted one place where I thought a comma should normally have been. Perhaps it's "paranoia", but it seemed like that is one possible "variation" that could have been used.
This is one of the methods taught in "counterintelligence 101" type classes at intel agencies. Create something hot and surprising, salt it with specific phrases, grammar or punctuation, and then leak it into a number of different compartments. If you have access to where the intel is leaking to, obtain a copy after it gets leaked, and figure out which of your compartments it came from.
18 differences would cover it. A few less people and they could get away with 17, which would yield 131072 combinations.
That's assuming each combination is binary, if they have more variations you'd need less, of course.
Here are a few of the interesting bits:
Splitting films in reels
Apparently Elon Musk tried this same technique at Tesla but "it backfired hilariously on the brilliant entrepreneur" [0,1]. According to Wikipedia :
> After a series of leaks at Tesla Motors in 2008, CEO Elon Musk reportedly sent slightly different versions of an e-mail to each employee in an attempt to reveal potential leakers. The e-mail was disguised as a request to employees to sign a new non-disclosure agreement.
In short, your personal goals and the goals of the corporation and its executives rarely align as much as you think.
Many companies are pretty flexible about what you talk about as long as giving out the information doesn't cause immediate harm. It's not unreasonable for people at much stricter companies to complain that their company is being unnecessarily strict in ways that are detrimental to the employees.
This is an email they sent to employees? It sure doesn't sound fun to work there.
What reason is there for leaking information about the company you are currently working for?
Of course, every employee at Apple knows the culture of the company, so it's not like it should be any surprise.
I used to work at Apple (both at the retail stores and briefly in Cupertino) and, out of all the jobs I've had, it's still my favorite corporate culture. It's the only company where I felt like I wasn't just a number. It wasn't uncommon for opportunities to open up for people all throughout the company and, as long as you weren't stealing or doing something else (like leaking info) that could harm the company, there seemed to be a mutual respect between upper management and even low-level employees.
Question for those who've gone through CI training: Do Apple leaks all fit into one of the MICE categories? I don't think there is any new motivation.
(Money, Ideology, Conscience, Ego)
Would be very interested to see what programs they have developed to intentionally generate false but plausible information internally, get it into the hands of specific people or workgroups, and see if/where/how/when it leaks. Usually done for the purpose of identifying specific leakers or compartments that are leaking.
Carries a fine or up to 10 years in jail, and yes - that US Code part means it's a federal offense.
I can't comment on their loyalties though...
Many wealthy people & companies hire off duty cops or "retired" federal agents as security.
Apple might be the largest employer in Cupertino, but that doesn't mean that they own the city…
Is it Apple's company size and culture that make leaks inevitable?
Netflix is a software/service company. When they've got something new, they can just ship it right away. Or if they decide to change something at the last minute, they can do that.
Apple is a hardware company, and they produce everything at volume (millions of units). Their products, by nature, have long lead times. The design must be finalized well before it ever ships.
If I were a tech reporter looking for leaks, I wouldn't place much trust in anything I heard from Netflix, because it'd be too easy for them to change it completely before it ships. Also, if the final product might be released to everyone tomorrow, my incorrect info will still be fresh in everyone's mind.
This applies with Apple, too. I hear a lot more rumors/leaks regarding the shape of the next iPhone, than I do rumors/leaks about the on-screen visuals of the next iOS (which could easily change).
I'm sure there are some things but there are very few tech company announcement details (outside of financial results) that so many people are anxious to learn ahead of time as specs and features of upcoming Apple products.
That's kind of the nature of the business. Users want Netflix to be basically invisible -- they just want to watch their favorite show.
Nielsen, studios, and the press would love to get their hands on Netflix’s viewer numbers and associated demographic data for a given show or movie.
And listen to just about any earnings call and you'll hear lots of financial analysts trying to extract some more "color" from behind whatever numbers were released.
Off the top of my head: viewership and engagement by content, new content deals currently being negotiated and their terms, how much they spend on infrastructure and what they spend it on. It's valuable info for investors and traders, agents, tech industry analysts.
The contrast between the aggressive privacy of companies (and government) and the non-existent privacy of individuals is shocking. Apple claims to have people arrested for violating its privacy; practically, I have no power - they can take almost whatever they want and do whatever they want with it, and there's nothing I can do.
In fact, the complete lack of privacy by individuals may the means by which companies find who released the information.
Finally, these moves are counter to an open society. In an open society, it's the powerful people and public institutions who need to be transparent - they are the threats to democracy and liberty - not the everyday private citizens.
The idea that this is some new Orwellian culture shift is so stupid...
Although, seeing how well that's worked out for labor, I'm not holding my breath.
And what happened to the other 17 (the majority)?
Were they "just" fired, were they hot iron branded or obliged to wear at all times a scarlet L ?
It's pretty weird to see the breach of an NDA in a corporate environment lead to an arrest rather than just a civil lawsuit between the two sides of a contract. Apple seems to be a bit eager here to play the fear card and I find it surprising that law enforcement would do more than take their statement and give them a copy of it. Breach of contract would be the worst that you could accuse a leaker of, which is not typically a criminal affair.
Is it normal to have people that break NDA's to be arrested?
But I wouldn't put it past Apple to try to prosecute anyone and everyone who leaks.
Perhaps if I had worked at some other company and saw highly unethical/illegal shit going on, I might consider whistleblowing, but I would never leak for the sake of leaking, even if it would cause a lot of hype or news commentary. It just seems sociopathic to do so.
Same goes for this memo. And if the leaker is reading this comment right now, then I ask, rhetorically, if you don’t feel comfortable with your employer’s preference for secrecy, then why are you working there?
To all the leakers: we need people like you, who are not afraid of the consequences of doing what you think is right. Many thanks to those who leaked the schematics and service manuals for various products (including Apple's), the HDCP master key, the AACS key, the SD card specs, the memory stick specs, everything on SciHub, and the list goes on... countless people would not have gained the knowledge and skills they have without your neighbourly efforts.
Some related commentary:
Edit: interesting to see the points on this bounce up and down. It seems I've struck a nerve.
Is leaking the reason it was rushed out the door? If not, I can't imagine why he's upset about it.
You show up to work each day. You've been working a lot lately, but you're really excited about the thing you're working on. You're looking forward to when it's ready and ships. But it's not time yet. It's not ready. You want the world to see it when you're ready to really show them something. Not just the idea of a thing, but the actual thing. When they can see it, touch it, understand it and breathe it. When they can really appreciate what you've been doing.
You've been working on this thing for awhile. You know there's still a long slog ahead. But you think—hey, one day soon, we'll get to talk about this thing.
Then one morning, you get into the office and you see some blog is talking about your project. They have a bunch of the details wrong, but it's definitely the project you're working on. And they're saying it's coming out in the next update.
Your work never has the chance to speak for itself. Someone decided to speak for your work instead. Just so they could feel important. It wasn't even their work to speak for. It was yours, and you and others had already been making decisions on how you wanted to talk about it, what things you wanted to show and where and how you wanted the work to speak for itself.
Wouldn't you be annoyed about it?
Wouldn't you be disappointed that someone leaked your work when later when you do finally announce it people don't let your work speak for itself, but just compare your work to whatever their minds imagined, made up and idealized about what you might be working on, doing or building?
Many at Apple enjoy the reveal of what they've been working on, so they can go and tell other people about it. It kind of takes the fun out if it leaks early.
Perhaps management should look at themselves also why people are leaking now and weren’t before.
What we do see now that's different than it was 10 years ago are supply chain leaks. Apple has to have such a long ramp to manufacture it's first week worth of iPhones, that it's inevitable that some of the 10s of thousands of people in the supply chain will leak. Often for money, given the culture and pay scales in China...
These days Tim takes a much more relax approach, comparatively speaking. You have employees that doesn't even know what you should or should not talk about. ( The Person responsible for NFC ).
Steve's era employees used to joke about Information leaking from the higher up management, which was true. Nowadays it seems to be going out everywhere.
There were leaks in the Jobs era, and pretty substantial ones too. Here's a notorious case: https://www.cnet.com/news/apple-settles-with-worker-bee/
> why people are leaking now and weren’t before
This assumes it's the same people. I would not know one way or the other, but my gut feeling is that newer employees are more prone to leaking, and Apple is a lot bigger than it was under Jobs.
I am assuming they dont leak the information for free. And if they do it for monetary reasons - the amount has to be large enough to justify risking your job (freakonomics 101). If they do it just for their ego boost (oh i got approached by so and so i must be very important) - then they are dumber than i thought.
Frankly, when you tell a room full of people about something it's practically guaranteed to leak. The exceptions seem to be (a) secrets nobody cares about ("We're rewriting our ductwork design software!") and things that involve government secrets (and that doesn't always work).
I had a couple of housemates who were in the US submarine service. They never talked about what they did, even 20 years retired, and were very upset when the book Blind Man's Bluff was published.
Hopefully for Apple's sake, he never went to work for them.