Jobs' health still in question
On the eve of MacWorld in San Francisco and CES in Las Vegas, the techno-blogosphere is once again abuzz about the state of Apple CEO’s Steve Jobs’ health. In 2004, Jobs was diagnosed with a rare form of pancreatic cancer. Last April, he showed up at the Worldwide Developers’ Conference looking thin, again tipping off speculation about his health. And now he’s not giving his traditional opening day speech at MacWorld. That’s given bored bloggers plenty to talk about during a very slow time.
Today, Apple finally admitted that Jobs is indeed having a health issue, according to CNET. The company did not, however, admit that the health issue is the reason Jobs won’t be speaking at MacWorld. Whatever.
I believe that Apple and Steve Jobs need to stop beating around the bush. I understand that people deserve to have a private life, but by continuing to say as little as possible about what’s going on, Apple’s PR team is just making it worse. Gawker goes a little further, saying it’s time for Jobs to pack up this things and go.
Today, Jobs finally sent a letter to his employees explaining that his doctors think he has a condition that doesn’t allow his body to process proteins properly, contributing to his weight loss. The fix, he says, is relatively simple.
According to CNET: “It’s possible to read between the lines and see Jobs’ health as more of a factor in the Macworld decision than Apple is letting on. But the company on Monday would say only that Jobs ‘deserves our complete and unwavering support during his recuperation,’ with no mention of Macworld in its 90-word statement.”
In my opinion, this is an incredibly poor PR strategy by Apple, which should really know better by now. If there’s nothing wrong with Jobs, then say that, and say it specifically, clearly and with detail. Make us believe that. If there is something more serious wrong with him, then tell us what it is and what we can expect. And if he’s not speaking at MacWorld because of that, then say that too. Quit trying to shove everything under the rug in the name of privacy and then expect reporters – and stockholders – to believe you. It’s arrogant, it’s damaging to your company and it’s driving your stock price down.