Tim Cook slams new anti-Apple book as 'nonsense' [update: author responds]

Posted:
in General Discussion edited March 2014
A new book about Apple after Steve Jobs paints the company in a largely negative light, leading CEO Tim Cook to publicly take issue with the new title, saying it "fails to capture" the essence of the company.




Cook was quoted in a statement provided to CNBC on Tuesday, in which the CEO slammed the new book entitled "Haunted Empire: Apple after Steve Jobs," penned by reporter Yukari Iwatani Kane, formerly of The Wall Street Journal. Kane's new book, published by HarperBusiness, presents her conclusion that Apple is on the decline after the death of Jobs.

In response, Cook and Apple came out swinging on Tuesday, the same day the book was released. In the statement, the CEO didn't mince words, referring to Kane's reporting as "nonsense."

"This nonsense belongs with some of the other books I've read about Apple," Cook said. "It fails to capture Apple, Steve, or anyone else in the company.

"Apple has over 85,000 employees that come to work each day to do their best work, to create the world's best products, to put their mark in the universe and leave it better than they found it. This has been the heart of Apple from day one and will remain at the heart for decades to come. I am very confident about our future."

Aside from its pessimistic outlook on Apple's future, the book also made headlines this week when included alleged details of a 2010 meeting between Jobs and Apple staff were detailed. Kane's sources claim that Jobs viewed the HDTV market as a "terrible business," and signaled to Apple employees that he didn't believe the company should ever make a full-fledged television set.

An excerpt from the book was also published by the Journal last month, describing the almost machine-like way Cook apparently operates in both his professional and personal lives. Kane described meetings with Cook as "terrifying," with the CEO maintaining a "Zenlike calm" while making demands of employees.

"He could strike terror in the hearts of his subordinates, but he could also motivate them to toil from dawn to midnight just for a word of praise," the book reads.

Update: In a statement emailed to Re/code, Kane said her book "must have touched a nerve" with Cook and is pleased the account has started a conversation about post-Jobs Apple.

"For Tim Cook to have such strong feelings about the book, it must have touched a nerve," Kane said. "Even I was surprised by my conclusions, so I understand the sentiment. I'm happy to speak with him or anyone at Apple in public or private. My hope in writing this book was to be thought-provoking and to start a conversation which I'm glad it has."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 129
    chandra69chandra69 Posts: 638member

    Some other books like what? - iCon ?

    Dont tell Walter's book please! 

     

    Why cant he just take that book off from iBookStore? 

    iCon was removed when Steve was head.

     

    Quote:


    'm happy to speak with him or anyone at Apple in public or private.


    No thanks.

  • Reply 2 of 129
    sudonymsudonym Posts: 233member

    Tim knows Apple a WHOLE lot better than the joker who wrote that piece of trash.

  • Reply 3 of 129
    red oakred oak Posts: 612member
    Yukari will look like a bigger fool than she does now when Apple let's loose a barrage of new products at WWDC in 90 days. Her writing career is going to be toast

    Isaacson's reputation is shi* for putting that recommendation on the cover. Incredible that someone with so much access to Apple and time spend with Steve could be so off the rails
  • Reply 4 of 129
    thedbathedba Posts: 442member

    Over at MacWorld, Jason Snell, had a whole piece about it.

    His conclusion is that the book often contradicts itself.

    For example:

    Kane cherry-picks press reactions to Apple events and financial statements that best fit into the Apple-is-doomed narrative. She suggests that too many people buying the low-end iPhone 4s instead of the then-new iPhone 5 in early 2013 was a sign of Apple’s failure. But then, within a few paragraphs, she doubles back to suggest that the new iPhone 5s being preferred over the low-end iPhone 5c is an equal—yet opposite—sign of the same failure.

  • Reply 5 of 129
    inoseyinosey Posts: 89member
    sudonym wrote: »
    Tim knows Apple a WHOLE lot better than the joker who wrote that piece of trash.
    Go Tim!
  • Reply 6 of 129
    buckalecbuckalec Posts: 192member
    Dilger / Kane debate live on WSJ d on Apple TV - I would pay for that
  • Reply 7 of 129

    I don't think Cook should have bothered to dignify the book with a comment.

     

    But considering he did, I am pleased with his pithy choice of words.

  • Reply 8 of 129
    gtrgtr Posts: 3,231member
    From what excepts we have seen recently I'm afraid I agree.

    I was originally interested in this but something feels [I]off[/I] with it.

    This book seems like a sensationalist attempt at a money grab and I won't be bothering to read it.
  • Reply 9 of 129
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,236member
    Originally Posted by TheDBA View Post

     
    His conclusion is that the book often contradicts itself.

     

    Wonder how much Samsung paid to commission her to write it.



    Oh, and this is straight from her personal website:

     

    Kane is best known for her in-depth analysis and scoops, among which include the news about Steve Jobs’s liver transplant, the iPad and the Verizon iPhone. Her stories have included the off-beat and hilarious like a piece on a fifteen-year old iPhone hacker and a story on iPad couture that became the subject of a Stephen Colbert rant.


     

    You can see her slant just in the wording of these sentences.

     

    Unrelated, but I was always taught that using adjectives to describe something you yourself have done was immodest.

  • Reply 10 of 129
    gtrgtr Posts: 3,231member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

     

    I don't think Cook should have bothered to dignify the book with a comment.


     

    Bullshit should always be called out.

     

    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."

  • Reply 11 of 129
    mpantonempantone Posts: 1,337member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Red Oak View Post



    Yukari will look like a bigger fool than she does now when Apple let's loose a barrage of new products at WWDC in 90 days. Her writing career is going to be toast

    Nah, she could always get a gig writing for Digitimes.

     

    ;)

  • Reply 12 of 129
    red oak wrote: »
    Yukari will look like a bigger fool than she does now when Apple let's loose a barrage of new products at WWDC in 90 days. Her writing career is going to be toast

    Isaacson's reputation is shi* for putting that recommendation on the cover. Incredible that someone with so much access to Apple and time spend with Steve could be so off the rails

    Disappointingly, Yukari will be welcomed by many in the press to speak her negative views about Apple's future. Much of what I have read in the press about the book, was written and spoken by many analysts and bloggers last year. Even as Apple was earning more sales and more profits, introducing 64-bit hardware and software, a working fingerprint sensor and more telephone carriers, investing billions in its future, etc., Apple was proclaimed to be in decline..

    Not until Yukari backtracks on anything written will the bloodbath of ink slow the promotion of the book. No matter how many slams against the book, Yukari most likely will not backtrack until a lot of money has been made. Look at Isaacson's backtracking on his thoughts about Google being more innovative than Apple. Not much has been heard from him since.
  • Reply 13 of 129
    inklinginkling Posts: 731member
    Apple declining with its best days in the past? Yeah, I remember a lot of people saying that in the mid-nineties. I have my beefs with Apple, but they're about specifics and not the broad picture.
  • Reply 14 of 129
    pazuzupazuzu Posts: 1,728member
    When does Mike Daisey perform the sequel? Utter rubbish.
  • Reply 15 of 129
    rash12rash12 Posts: 7member

    Even on Amazon where people often buy and write their opinions are saying out-right, the book joke, thrash with no insight of past and current atmosphere at Apple. With all the products announced after Steve jobs, apple have done technologically marvelous job and will continue in future. Steve Jobs spirit is buried way down in Apple employees heart and mind. 

  • Reply 16 of 129
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,005member
    I love how these people, who haven't worked a day in their fucking lives at Apple nor have a damn clue about any aspect of how the company is run, feel entitled enough to write a book making such ridiculous agenda-driven conclusions. The sad thing is because this book is about Apple, and has such a negative title, it will probably make a shitload of money, even though it is filled with nothing but superficialities and near-lies.
  • Reply 17 of 129
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post



    I love how these people, who haven't worked a day in their fucking lives at Apple nor have a damn clue about any aspect of how the company is run, feel entitled enough to write a book making such ridiculous agenda-driven conclusions. The sad thing is because this book is about Apple, and has such a negative title, it will probably make a shitload of money, even though it is filled with nothing but superficialities and near-lies.

    Hey it got the NY Times a friggin' Pulitzer....

  • Reply 18 of 129
    quinneyquinney Posts: 2,503member
    <span style="line-height:1.4em;">His conclusion is that the book often contradicts itself.</span>

    <span style="line-height:1.4em;">Wonder how much Samsung paid to commission her to write it.</span>


    <span style="line-height:1.4em;">Oh, and this is </span>
    straight<span style="line-height:1.4em;"> from her personal website:</span>
    <span style="line-height:1.4em;">Kane is best known for her in-depth analysis and scoops, among which include the news about Steve Jobs’s liver transplant, the iPad and the Verizon iPhone. Her stories have included the off-beat and hilarious like a piece on a fifteen-year old iPhone hacker and a story on iPad couture that became the subject of a Stephen Colbert rant.</span>

    <span style="line-height:1.4em;">You can see her slant just in the wording of these sentences.</span>


    <span style="line-height:1.4em;">Unrelated, but </span>
    I was always taught that using adjectives to describe something you yourself have done was immodest.

    You gotta love the Steven Colbert name-dropping.
  • Reply 19 of 129
    singularitysingularity Posts: 1,327member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post



    I love how these people, who haven't worked a day in their fucking lives at Apple nor have a damn clue about any aspect of how the company is run, feel entitled enough to write a book making such ridiculous agenda-driven conclusions. 

    a bit like most people who post on any company specific website such as Appleinsider.

  • Reply 20 of 129
    512ke512ke Posts: 767member

    Tim should never have called this book nonsense.  To slam the book is only to empower and draw attention to it.

     

    He should have said, "I'm not familiar with the book.  I haven't read it" or something similar.

     

    Tone of: vague dismissal, he's too busy even to think about a gnat buzzing around.

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