Apple's Former Keynote Address Producer Files Suit Claiming Steve Jobs Promised Lifetime Position

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
46,790
8,960





Bloomberg Businessweek reports that a former Apple employee who was fired last December has filed suit against the company, claiming that Steve Jobs had promised him lifetime job security. The employee, Wayne Goodrich, served as the executive producer for Apple's public presentations and says that he was a confidant of Jobs. Goodrich says that he oversaw the production of a number of important keynote events such as the introduction of the iPhone and iPad, and was the first person to introduce Apple to Siri, which Apple later acquired.
Goodrich, who worked for Jobs since 1998, was promised by late chairman of the world's most valuable company in a one-on- one meeting in May 2005 that he would always have a job at Apple, according to the complaint. The conversation took place after Jobs's return from medical leave to receive treatment for pancreatic cancer, Goodrich said.

"This express promise by Steve Jobs was consistent with a practice that Steve Jobs had, acting on behalf of defendant Apple, of promising job security to certain key employees who worked directly with him for many years," Goodrich said in the complaint.
Goodrich claims that Jobs had reiterated the promise in 2010 but that he was ultimately fired last December so that Apple could avoid paying him restricted stock that had been awarded in 2008, not because of any issues with his job performance.

Article Link: Apple's Former Keynote Address Producer Files Suit Claiming Steve Jobs Promised Lifetime Position
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
25,747
8,688
Detroit
If he doesn't have that in writing with Steve's signature, I doubt he will have any standing. A one-on-one conversation with no witnesses and half of the conversation a dead person, isn't going to hold up in court very well.
 

ugahairydawgs

macrumors 68030
Jun 10, 2010
2,706
1,327
Sucks that they screwed him like that, but unless he has something in writing on something on tape I can't imagine this is going anywhere.

Just another reason why I am firm in my desire to stay in the wonderful world of small business.
 

Trik

macrumors 6502
Jan 18, 2011
280
400
Washington, DC
Umm...

This is just a stunt to get some more money out of Apple. I hope he gets Lionel Hutz to represent him, because this is the most blatant case of wrongful termination, I can almost picture it... "Will I always have a job here Steve?" Steve- "Yes, over my dead body would anyone fire you!"
 

Fazer100

macrumors newbie
Jul 27, 2011
10
0
Legal fees

I guess they need to find a way to cover all these legal costs without losing share prices :)
 

mofish

macrumors member
Aug 15, 2012
39
0
Scotland
You do not get very far in life without having the relevant paperwork backing you up. Unfortunate if true, but you cannot do 'hearsay' in business. I can't see this going any further.
 

pubwvj

macrumors 68000
Oct 1, 2004
1,897
202
Mountains of Vermont
I suspect he does have it in writing, video or voice recording, etc. Otherwise his lawyer would not have been likely to take the suite. Lawyers are well aware of the need to document things like this. All it takes is an email or a scrawled note in Steve Job's handwriting.
 

KrankyGuy

macrumors newbie
Feb 22, 2012
7
0
He's got one thing in writing that puts him ahead of 99% of the job seekers out there: the line on his resume that says executive producer at Apple for 10+ years.
 

Northgrove

macrumors 65816
Aug 3, 2010
1,114
381
A conversation...?

At least where I live, that's simply not legally binding. Where I live, yes, you can enter a so called verbal contract, but then you need to present everything in a certain formal manner, have agreement from both parties, and have a recording on file.

I'm sure US laws can be different from over here, but if this is not a legally bound contract, I wonder why he even bother. He won't even have any way to prove the conversation took place?

What's harsh here is how and why he got fired. Ouch.
 

GoCubsGo

macrumors Nehalem
Feb 19, 2005
35,753
142
No one should ever promise lifetime job security, no one. If this did happen it is darn near impossible to prove now and I would be surprised if the CEO of a company would say something like that.
 

ixodes

macrumors 601
Jan 11, 2012
4,430
2
Pacific Coast, USA
Jobs could be a very charismatic person who easily sucked people into his reality distortion field. This guy is just another victim who was chewed up & spit out.
 

Flitzy

Guest
Oct 20, 2010
215
0
Well I'm shocked that Apple would ever hire a complete idiot for a Keynote Address Producer.

Talk about your frivolous lawsuits..... it's almost like he's trying to get a job with Google or Samsung.
 

OddyOh

macrumors 6502
Nov 29, 2005
270
51
Regina, SK, Canada
If he has proper proof, hopefully Apple does the right thing (hire him back, or give him proper compensation)...many people on here love the keynotes. Now each product launch could have a bad taste to it. :(
 

ARandomFellow

macrumors member
Aug 17, 2011
76
5
I feel for the guy if he's telling the truth. I hope he got some form of back up besides his own word against a dead guy's. I have a feeling though that if he doesn't have any proof of that, he'll have a hard time convincing a judge of this.

Sometimes, I don't like to say the naked underbelly of how companies function. It's not a pretty place. There's no such thing as loyalty left in business anymore. At least, not in most places I've been.
 

illitrate23

macrumors 6502a
Jun 11, 2004
562
124
uk
i'm 99% that it wasn't a dream and i had a one-on-one meeting with Steve once and he promised to send me a new MacBookPro each year - where do I sign up to lodge my lawsuit? :D
 

nunes013

macrumors 65816
May 24, 2010
1,280
184
Connecticut
Steve also said that in 2005. i dont think he knew what would happen to him a few years down the road. It sounds like Steve meant that as long as he (Steve) was at the company his job was secure. Unfortunately if the guy doesnt have it in writing I think he might be out of luck
 

725032

Guest
Aug 5, 2012
724
0
What a shame. Poor guy

Apple's reputation is really taking a beating at the moment... Shame on them
 

12dylan34

macrumors 6502a
Sep 3, 2009
877
6
Well I'm shocked that Apple would ever hire a complete idiot for a Keynote Address Producer.

Talk about your frivolous lawsuits..... it's almost like he's trying to get a job with Google or Samsung.
You think it's frivolous to sue for having your livelihood taken away when you were promised it wouldn't be? Especially Apple firing him for such a stupid and greedy reason as not having to pay his stock out. I'm sorry, but put the fanboyism aside and have some humanity.
 

Nozuka

macrumors 68020
Jul 3, 2012
2,274
2,819
If this had happened at any other Company with any other dead CEO noone would even care.

And maybe he didnt perform as well as he thought.