The Tim Cook interview

If you haven’t yet seen it, worth taking the time to watch the entire thing. The extended version (all 30 minutes) is embedded below.

You can also see the interview on the new Apple TV. Go to the App Store and tap on the interview. You’ll be prompted to download the ABC World News app. It’s free and the interview is featured prominently in the app.

One response that is becoming a big talking point:

David Muir: In your quiet moments, do you have any concern that you might be able to prevent a terrorist attack by breaking into that phone?

Tim Cook: David, some things are hard, and some things are right. And some things are both. This is one of those things.

David Muir: And in this case, you believe there are some things that should never be created?

Tim Cook: Correct. Think about this: It is, in our view, the software equivalent of cancer. Is this something that should be created?

And, later in the interview:

Tim Cook: We believe that is a very dangerous operating system.

Then, referring to an OS that let you use a computer to automate the process of trying passwords to get into your phone:

Tim Cook: If one of the bad guys knew that that existed, think about the target that is. Everybody would want that operating system. It has the potential to get into any iPhone. This is not something that should be created.

And, finally:

David Muir: Are you prepared to take this all the way to the Supreme Court?

Tim Cook: We would be prepared to take this issue all the way, yes. Because I think it’s that important for America.

This interview is a great insight into Tim and Apple’s thinking here, a chance to truly understand the stakes.



  • StruckPaper

    Not crazy about the cancer analogy. Hope the anti-Apple nation does not use it against Cook.

    • DanielSw

      It IS a good analogy. Too bad if you’re not crazy about it. Such a thing would kill all the good will and trust Apple has built over three decades with its customers. It would usher in a truly Dark Age for computing devices and demoralize the whole planet with respect to personal liberties, privacy, and security.

      • I don’t think he means it that broadly. It is much more specific. And it is a great analogy.

        If you are running iOS 9.2 and you get an iOS 9.3 from Apple, designed only by Apple, and only for the benefit of Apple customers, then that is healthy growth of iOS. That is like the cells in your body dividing and replacing themselves with newer healthy cells.

        However, if the next release of iOS after 9.3 is 9.3c, designed not by Apple but by the courts, designed not for the benefit of Apple customers but actually as a way to spy on them, with a backdoor in it, then that is not healthy growth of iOS. That is cancerous growth of iOS. That is not how customers were expecting their iOS to grow. The iOS 9.3c has a tumor that will harm all users of iOS as it spreads throughout the world.

  • StruckPaper

    Lest we forget, this is the second time he has used the cancer analogy in the last year. “Sitting is the new cancer.”

    • Yeah, but he got that from some fitness expert or something.

  • llahnoraa

    It’s so frustrating there’s no closed captioning / subtitle from ABC…

  • The questions were terrible. There was no research at all. And they just kept asking the same stupid thing over and over again without listening to the answers. There was no conversation. Just 30 minutes of ABC News trying to trick Tim Cook into giving them a soundbite that people could get outraged about.

    That is a totally antique kind of news.

    Compare to either of these:

    Michael Render interviewing Bernie Sanders https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LCnrQZbqIQU

    The Young Turks https://www.youtube.com/theyoungturks

    … that is 21st century. Not antique.

    Tim Cook should sit down with Cenk Uygur for 30 minutes. The conversation would be an actual conversation. Cenk would prepare for it, he would have an idea about what the issue is, and he would listen to Tim Cook and respond to him in ways that illuminate the viewer.

    I mean, the ABC News thing is embarrassing. If you are going to send a spokesmodel, at least equip him with some cogent questions. The questions were just painfully stupid.

    • Agree about the questions. ABC also cleaned up Trump’s quote.

      In fact, the media in general has done a piss-poor job of reporting this story.

    • “Tim Cook should sit down with Cenk Uygur for 30 minutes.”

      That is a great idea. In fact, Cook should hit up several of the online news and video blogging sites in order to get the message out to people who get news that way. It’s one thing to go on the major television players, but it is necessary to ensure the word gets out to those people who use technology in their everyday lives. And that includes the casual users of Facebook (where I see so much misinformation being passed around) — more of this kind of thing to link to could be a good thing. (I say “could” because I’m cynical enough to figure people won’t care to listen anyway…)

      I’m going to go make the suggestion via Apple’s feedback form.