An Apple a day doesn’t keep rumour away

How much is a human life worth? Well, if you’re Steve Jobs you’re apparently worth about $20 billion in the market capitalization of the company you run.

With today’s new that the founding CEO of Apple will not make his annual speech at the upcoming MacWorld event, persistent rumours about Mr. Jobs’ health have re-surfaced. Apple’s stock was down about five per cent even before the rumours began swirling again when someone noticed that he wasn’t a confirmed speaker on the agenda.

Apple is as notorious for its internal cult of secrecy as Mr. Jobs is for his controlling ways. When speculation about the cause of his gaunt appearance first began, his top spokesperson even publicly lied to shareholders at his instruction. Something for which neither she nor Mr. Jobs expressed regret.

You’d think that a company as savvy and leading edge as Apple might understand better than most, just how hard it is to keep things on the down-low in a wired world. A world they helped create.

Gordon Buckland