Apple Gestapo: Engineer fired for showing iPad to Woz hours before launch [UPDATED]

GrindedDown

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 4, 2009
636
199
Las Vegas
Over at gizmodo after interviewing Steve Wozniak:

The morning of the iPad launch, an engineer showed Woz an iPad for two minutes. For this he was fired.​

Someone: Secrets secrets are no fun unless you tell ev....

Apple: You're fired!

Source: Gizmodo Article

Update: According to several news sources including yours truly MacRumors, the engineer brought a 3G iPad to the wifi launch in a public mall and showed it to Woz. There is video floating around of the alleged engineer (I'll post source on request) showing it to Woz, but also demoing it to others around Woz.
 

iMessengerApp

macrumors member
Oct 6, 2009
54
0
Over at gizmodo after interviewing Steve Wozniak:

The morning of the iPad launch, an engineer showed Woz an iPad for two minutes. For this he was fired.​

Someone: Secrets secrets are no fun unless you tell ev....

Apple: You're fired!
Wow... that is not right. Especially since Woz is still considered an independent contractor of Apple. He is allowed to work at anytime if he chooses.
 

gnasher729

macrumors P6
Nov 25, 2005
16,953
3,852
Wow... that is not right. Especially since Woz is still considered an independent contractor of Apple. He is allowed to work at anytime if he chooses.
I guess all the engineers had orders to show the iPad to nobody. Including other employees, independent contractors, friends and family, people you've seen on TV, nobody.
 

bobob

macrumors 68040
Jan 11, 2008
3,098
1,978
It's awesome that threads come pre-Godwinized nowadays! Isn't the future amazing?
 

emaja

macrumors 68000
May 3, 2005
1,706
11
Chicago, IL
If your employer tells you not to do something, and you do it anyway, expect to be disciplined in some way. If you work for Apple, you know how they are about this kind of thing, so you should be extra careful.

Gray Powell is lucky that Apple is forgiving when it comes to mistakes. The "mystery engineer" deliberately disobeyed, therefore he was fired.

It sucks, but he has no one to blame but himself. I feel for the guy.
 

DKatri

macrumors 6502
Sep 2, 2009
475
0
Birmingham, UK
I guess all the engineers had orders to show the iPad to nobody. Including other employees, independent contractors, friends and family, people you've seen on TV, nobody.
I dont know. I think Woz is one of the few people that it should be ok to show it to. He's gotta be up there with Jobs, Schiller, and Ive.
 

Baron58

macrumors 6502
Feb 19, 2004
451
2
I dont know. I think Woz is one of the few people that it should be ok to show it to. He's gotta be up there with Jobs, Schiller, and Ive.
Then Jobs, Schiller or Ive would have shown it to him. Presumably they didn't, so it wasn't this guy's place to make the decision.

Getting fired over it sucks, but occasional public lynchings are necessary to make sure the rest of the employees get the message.
 

admanimal

macrumors 68040
Apr 22, 2005
3,531
2
The only reason Powell isn't fired was because if he was, Apple would have such bad PR
I don't really buy this. Would anyone really have such a huge issue with Apple firing someone for being so blatantly irresponsible (assuming the details of the story as we know it are true)? The guy was allowed to carry around a secret prototype and then forgets it at a bar. I'm guessing most companies would have a pretty serious problem with that. Not to mention that Apple knew he lost it long before (as in several weeks) his name showed up on Gizmodo.
 

brendu

macrumors 68020
Apr 23, 2009
2,438
2,412
USA
no wonder Woz left apple... I bet he cant stand working with jobs... the guy is a nutcase.
 

Hmac

macrumors 68020
May 30, 2007
2,130
4
Midwest USA
Sounds like Woz' engineer buddy should have paid closer attention to the rules. I'll bet that story circulated pretty quick at Apple Inc....and I'll bet the result is their engineers will be a lot more careful from now on.

Sorry the guy lost his job, but he broke the rules and should have known better.

IF it's a true story...
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,673
33,530
Boston
My disenfranchisement with Apple

Some things about Apple, I just don't like.
Here's a story as told by the Woz
http://gizmodo.com/5523673/steve-wozniak-on-apple-security-employee-termination-and-gray-powell

During last week's iPhone leak saga, Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, reached out to us with a story: The morning of the iPad launch, an engineer showed Woz an iPad for two minutes. For this he was fired.

It's a story that paints Apple as many people already see the company: ruthlessly secretive, and even vindictive. It also sheds some light on the story of Gray Powell, an Apple engineer whose breach of secrecy was at once less intentional, more severe and infinitely more public—until now.
This emphasized text is basically how I'm starting to feel about the company.

Has anyone else been noticing a level of arrogance and/or vindictiveness about apple? While I like their products, I question by brand loyalty as more of these types of stories come out.

Thoughts/opinions.
 

Mark Booth

macrumors 68000
Jan 16, 2008
1,623
453
Wha... wha... My employer told me not to do xyz and when I did xyz anyway, they fired me. How unfair! Wha! Wha!

Call the:




:rolleyes:

Mark
 

Hmac

macrumors 68020
May 30, 2007
2,130
4
Midwest USA
The guy should have paid closer attention to the rules.

Assuming it's a true story...


Opinions...? As for me, I don't give a crap how a company treats its employees...that's their business and something I am unqualified to judge. I do give a crap about how they treat me and Apple has treated me just fine.
 

peestandingup

macrumors regular
Jul 14, 2006
248
0
Woz is still technically employed by Apple. Call me crazy but I'm guessing that if you were this engineer & the co-founder of Apple wanted to look at a product, you'd let them.

Its freakin Woz for christ sake.
 

Hmac

macrumors 68020
May 30, 2007
2,130
4
Midwest USA
The only reason Powell isn't fired was because if he was, Apple would have such bad PR
Yeah...right up there at the top of Apple's concerns...how their perceived by the public.

Apple's on a mission. Details aren't going to stand in their way. Who knows why Gray Davis wasn't fired and Woz' engineer buddy was? We certainly don't have all the facts and likely never will.
 

Mitchll

macrumors newbie
Apr 18, 2010
13
0
If you don't like the rules, don't play the game. The part where you get a paycheck is good, the part where you are supposed to do what you agreed to do is bad? Give me a break! There is certainly no secret about Apple's reaction to violating their rules.
 

kas23

macrumors 603
Oct 28, 2007
5,627
291
The only reason Powell isn't fired was because if he was, Apple would have such bad PR
Or, because it was a controlled leak. He supposedly brought the thing out to a bar. C'mon! Would you have done that with your future? Him not being fired is a clear indication this whole "leak" thing was staged to get them on the national news for a few days. That's some awful cheap advertising.
 

peestandingup

macrumors regular
Jul 14, 2006
248
0
Woz can do whatever Woz wants to do IMO.

Its likely this story isnt true as I dont believe Jobs would let them fire the guy since it was who it was. Its likely the guy would get his ass-chewed out, but I think if Woz told Jobs not to fire the guy, then he wouldnt be fired. Simple as that.
 
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