Apple's Tim Cook talks privacy at Fortune's 2018 CEO initiativeApple's CEO took to the stage in San Francisco for this year's Fortune CEO Initiative Meeting, discussing topics from the company's social values to privacy and curating news content.
At a high level, how do you frame the role of the CEO? For Apple, we've always been about changing the world. And it became clear to me some number of years ago that you don't do that by staying quiet on things that matter. Immigration and human rights, why does Apple have standing on those? There's nothing commerical in that. But on immigration particular, we have a lot of immigrants that work in Apple. I want to stand up for them. That is what human rights is all about, is about just treating people with dignity and respect at the end of the day. And everybody in here may not agree that companies have values. Yeah. It's kinda storks at that point, but if you do agree with that And if something happens that isn't consistent with those then I think you need to speak. Because if you don't, think about if you don't, then you're. It's sort of, you're in the appalling silence of the good people category, and this is something I've never wanted to be a part of. You're never going to fulfill your mission of changing the world in today's environment by doing Right? You're not going to do all that you can do by staying quiet. Our view of privacy started from our values, and then we crafted our business model to that. We felt strongly about privacy when no one cared. And so this isn't something that we woke up one morning and said, the media is focusing on privacy today, let's do that. You're wading more directly into the information business than I think Apple ever has been with the Apple News devoting human intelligence to the coverage of the mid-term elections. Could you. Tell everybody why Apple's doing that. Well, if you start at the macro level, we've always believed in curation. And so if you go on the App Store, the App Store Store has been curated since we put the first app in there in 2009. We felt a duty to review apps, make sure that they did what they said that they did. And since the early days we were criticized for doing that because people felt you're limiting this or that. And that we felt like this is our store and We it's so sad about us. It's what's in there. We've taken that same view to news. Why did we do that? Because we saw the news was kind of going a little crazy. But for Apple there's we felt the tops stories Should be selected by a human. Not to be political at all, and not to check the views of these, but to make sure that you're not picking content that just strictly has the goal of enraging people. that content that has a reason to be out there. So we hope to bring this same kind of view to different subjects over periods of time. Earlier this year two investor groups criticized Apple specifically for not being as attentive as it could be between the issue of Of addiction of smart phone, they're too addictive, they cause bad behavior. We've never wanted people to overuse our products, we want people to be empowered from them and to be able to do things that they couldn't do otherwise. But if you're spending all the time on your phone, you're spending too much of time, right