NY Times Offers Historical Context for Apple's Rumor Lawsuits

Apple CEO Steve Jobsi obsession with secrecy and controlling Appleis product announcements has roots that are decades old, according to New York Times reporter John Markoff. The veteran reporter has penned an article that offers in-depth historical context for Appleis current efforts to sue Mac rumor site Think Secret, and subpoena information from AppleInsider and PowerPage.

"In the fall of 1981," wrote Mr. Markoff, "Paul Freiberger, a reporter for the weekly computer industry newspaper InfoWorld, was preparing to run a story that Apple Computer was engaged in two secret development projects. But first, he listened as company co-founder Steven P. Jobs shouted at him over the phone that revealing the code names of products would offer a crucial advantage to the computer makeris Japanese competitors."

He continued, "In the end, the paper got its scoop - Appleis new projects were called the Lisa and the Macintosh - and the company still managed to handily trounce its competitors."

According to Mr. Markoff, not much has changed in the 24 years since that time, except the period of time between 1985 and 1997, when Steve Jobs wasnit at the company. Mr. Markoff chronicles how many of Appleis top execs were the sources of numerous stories during that period of time.

The article also offers comment from industry observers who believe that rather than squelching interest in upcoming Apple products, the companyis legal efforts against the Mac Web sites may serve to heighten the buzz that surrounds the company.

We recommend the two-page article for anyone interested in the case, and especially those who may not have as in-depth an understanding of Appleis corporate past.