A Puffed-Up Reporter's Puffed-Up Sources

Owen Thomas · 01/19/09 11:58AM

CNBC tech reporter Jim Goldman blew the biggest story on his beat by insisting his "sources inside the company" said Apple's Steve Jobs was in tip-top shape. Do these sources even exist?

Steve Jobs Confesses: Too Sick to Work

Owen Thomas · 01/05/09 10:23AM

If you just look at how thin he is, you'd know it. But now Steve Jobs himself has admitted that his declining health is keeping him from taking the Macworld stage tomorrow.

Steve Jobs must be on the Tesla waiting list, too

Owen Thomas · 10/29/08 06:00PM

What's wrong with this picture? That silver Mercedes almost certainly the Jobsmobile, iPhone Savior believes — except it's not parked in a handicapped spot. There's one right there, ripe for the parking! Here's a wild theory: Apple PR controller Katie Cotton is so concerned about continuing rumors about Jobs's health that she no longer permits him to take the blue spaces — lest someone think he actually needs one. Can you think of a better caption? Leave it in the comments. The best one will become the post's new headline. Yesterday's winner: null, for "It'd hit me."

Jobs blames hedge funds for health rumors, not Katie Cotton's poor damage control

Nicholas Carlson · 09/10/08 09:20AM

In an interview after yesterday's iPod refresh announcement, Apple CEO Steve Jobs admitted that he could "stand to gain 10 or 15 pounds," but told CNBC's Jim Goldman "I'm doing fine, really." Jobs said he blamed what Goldman calls "the rampant speculation and rumors on the blogosphere about the issue," on "hedge funds with a big short position in Apple." Jobs is wrong.

Steve Jobs admits Katie Cotton lied for him

Owen Thomas · 07/26/08 12:00AM

"You think I'm an arrogant [expletive] who thinks he's above the law, and I think you're a slime bucket who gets most of his facts wrong," Apple CEO Steve Jobs told New York Times writer Joe Nocera, in the course of Nocera's reporting on Apple's cult of secrecy. The top subject, of course, is Jobs's health. Jobs insisted on speaking to Nocera off the record, so we cannot know what, exactly, has gone wrong with Jobs's body of late. We do know this much, however, thanks to Nocera: Top Apple flack Katie Cotton, who has long put Jobs's interests above those of Apple shareholders', flat-out lied when she attributed Jobs's gaunt appearance to "a common bug."Apple's secretive ways have paid off for it in turning every product release into a marketing event. But by applying that same Kremlin-like opaqueness to its corporate affairs, Apple has gone astray. "By claiming Mr. Jobs had a bug, Apple wasn't just going dark on its shareholders," Nocera writes. "It was deceiving them." It's one thing for Jobs to lie about Apple's unreleased gadgets — for example, when he publicly dismissed the notion of producing an iPod that played video in 2004, even as Apple was secretly working on one. That kind of maneuver can be put down to competitive misdirection. But to extend it to the health of a public company's CEO? Unseemly. As unseemly, really, as the Apple apologists among us who join Apple PR in repeating the mantra that Jobs's health is a "private matter". Wishing doesn't make it so. With Jobs personally accounting for a quarter of Apple's market cap, it's everyone's concern. Apple's fans have a choice: They can join Jobs himself in insulting award-winning reporters like Nocera, and dismissing the whole affair. Or they can face reality: Steve Jobs let his personal flack lie for him — and they bought it. That must really bug them.

New iPhone just waiting to fall off a truck in the East Bay

Jackson West · 05/30/08 03:20PM

The new iPhone that has the panties of Apple fans in a bunch? It's already here. The latest shipment arrived in Oakland on May 6, and was then trucked to a distribution center in nearby Fremont. So if you want to get your hands on one before the Wall Street Journal's Walt Mossberg — if it's not already too late — it might be a better idea to make friends with the International Longshore Workers Union than top Apple flack Katie Cotton. (Photo by AP/Paul Sakuma)

Dontcha wish you'd come up with this video?

Owen Thomas · 07/19/07 12:26AM

Hate to say it, but Jason Calacanis had it right: NYT gadget reviewer David Pogue's "iPhone: The Musical" was a trite, derivative, and boring piece of Apple propaganda. But a group of San Francisco webheads have come up with a pitch-perfect take on the iPhone phenomenon. Behold the glory that is "Dontcha Wish Your Cell Phone Was Hot Like Me?" — and after the jump, my take on why this spoof gets it right while Pogue's flopped.