Apple strikes back at 'iCon Jobs' publisher

Mac maker has removed all of John Wiley & Sons' books from Apple store shelves ahead of the publication of a biography of its CEO. Photo: Jobs biography said to rankle Apple

Tech Industry
Technology publisher John Wiley & Sons says that Apple Computer has removed all its books from Apple store shelves ahead of the publication of a biography titled "iCon Steve Jobs."

"There were conversations with an Apple executive and following that the books were pulled," Wiley spokeswoman Lori Sayde-Mehrtens said Tuesday. "It's an unfortunate decision for us, and we're clearly disappointed in their decision."

The Wiley books were removed late last week, said Sayde-Mehrtens, adding that the two companies have had a long-standing partnership.

An Apple representative declined to comment on the book about Apple's CEO or whether Wiley publications had been pulled from Apple shelves. But author Jeffrey Young said Apple did not like his book.

"My understanding is that Wiley requested or asked if there were any factual changes to be made in the book or errors and that's when they (Apple) said the only thing satisfying to (them) would be not to publish the book," Young told Reuters.

"Obviously there's some relationship between seeing the book and pulling the Wiley books, but I don't know what it is," Young said. "I was pretty stunned."

The book, "iCon Steve Jobs: The Greatest Second Act in the History of Business," written by Young with William Simon, is not yet available, but an Apple executive got an early copy of the book, Young told Reuters.

Under Jobs, Apple, based in Cupertino, Calif., is famously tight-lipped about its products and is now suing several individuals for publishing details about upcoming products on the Internet.

Young said that the current book was "pretty positive" and updates a biography of Jobs he wrote 20 years ago titled "The Journey Is the Reward."

"It was pretty negative at that point," Young said of the earlier biography.

The updated biography reflects the turnaround of Apple with redesigned Macintosh computers, the iPod and Jobs' success at Pixar Animation Studios, where he is also CEO.

"This one I thought made his tale much more positive," Young said. "His return to Apple has been somewhat triumphant."

Jobs left Apple in 1985 after disagreements with then-CEO John Scully. He returned to Apple in 1996 as an informal advisor when Apple bought Next, a computer company that Jobs founded. Jobs once again became chief executive of Apple in 2000.

The decision by Apple to remove the books was first reported by the San Jose Mercury News.

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