Wozgate erupts

“Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has posted a statement online in which he denied some of the comments attributed to him in an article I wrote recently,’ Peter Nowak reports for The New Zealand Herald. “In that statement, he suggests that I pushed him to make some of those comments, that I had an agenda in interviewing him, and that he feels used. I find Mr Wozniak’s response shocking as it is a serious attack – not only on my credibility, but also on that of the press in general. My only agenda in interviewing Mr Wozniak was to get his honestly-held thoughts on current events in technology, particularly in respect to the company he helped build.”

“Mr Wozniak did indeed make all the comments attributed to him, and he certainly was not pushed or used to accomplish any agenda, because one did not exist. I asked very open-ended questions – what was his opinion on Apple switching to Intel, what did he think about iPods, and where did he think Microsoft was heading? If anything, Mr. Wozniak steered the interview; any other questions I asked arose from where he took the conversation,” Nowak reports. “We are posting verbatim transcripts of the relevant sections of the interview, as well as an audio recording of the full interview, so that readers and listeners can decide for themselves whether Mr Wozniak was pushed or used. I recommend listening to the audio to hear the full context, flow and nuance of the conversation.”

Full article which includes the interview in MP3 format; duration 27:00; Size 9.27MB (which for some reason is ridiculously disclaimed “Requires Windows Media Player” – it does not require WMA to play) here.

MacDailyNews Take: Poor Woz. He ought to stop giving interviews about current day Apple and concentrate on Segway Polo and blank check companies. It’s nice to see they still have journalists in New Zealand at least.

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Related articles:
Woz heartily denies ‘Apple should spin off iPod’ quote – February 25, 2006
Woz: spin off iPod, Intel Macs ‘like consorting with enemy,’ Microsoft is ‘Darth Vader’ – February 23, 2006

46 Comments

  1. The media is 100% subjective. It really depends on who is asking questions, who is answering the questions and the type of questions being asked.

    My father is a media professional and has been in several government positions in regards to information flow to the population and I know very well what happens when people write stories and how things are portrayed for the right people to believe the right things. I believe the journalist publishing the transcript and audio file of the interview is a saving grace for him, but the 200-300 other associated press newswires that picked up the story and bent it for their own demented desires are where the lack of quality control hurt both the journalist and Mr. Wozniak.

    The damage is done, now all we can do is believe what we want to believe. Me personally, I believe he said / meant those things because frankly, the young idealistic people that start companies are never the same people after 20 years and 20 billion dollars. For example, Google doing evil in China just for money?!?!

    Apple is trying to sell products just like any other hardware or software company and they do what they must to maintain sharholder value. I love their products so I buy them and don’t complain unless the products don’t work as advertized. Mr. Wozniak is right in ‘some’ regard to Apple becoming like the companies they swore never to be like; he was just being honest!

    Organizations that I love but are becoming 800lbs gorillas {bordering on evil empires}, Apple, Google, Yahoo, Amazon, PETA, Reebok [Addidas], Mittal Steal, Blogger [Google], Skype [eBay], and a few more but you guys get my drift. The world is being eaten up by the same few investors who own everything and buy each others companies to solidify their power and control. I’m not a conspiracy theorist, but look at Steve Jobs having dominant shares and input in 3 major entertainement, media, technology companies; Pixar, Disney and Apple. 1 man has icredible leverage over what we watch, listen to, how we utilize computer technology and the future of our consumption of the digital lifestyle. I truly hope he stays the cool, loveable guy I have come to appreciate and not become Vader or worse, the emperor himself…

  2. Rex: “This is why people like Harrison Ford hate interviews, it’s because interviewers love “digging dirt”. They want you to reveal your opinions, especially if its against something or someone(controversial). You say something casually, and the interviewer uses it as a headline.”

    Duh! That’s why they call these things “interviews.” An interview is NOT a casual conversation, and anybody who thinks it is ought not speak to the press…

    Woz has got nobody to blame for opening his mouth but himself.

  3. Nuclear Kid, I couldn’t agree more.

    I listened to the taped interview and found it interesting but couldn’t detect anything particularly
    antagonistic on either side. The interviewer asked good questions and and got good answers. However, every time I hear Woz speak in public I can’t help thinking there’s something a little odd about Woz.

  4. Woz is just an odd duck geek. Nice guy I’m sure but he just marchs to the beat of a different iPod. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

    Actually, he talks more than my mother and that’s a lot.

  5. Is Woz gay. He speaks with a lisp. He sounds gay to me. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

    I also think that iDon’t is a he/she. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

  6. iFart,
    Have you been spying on me again? I have not completed the operation’s final cut, I mean stage.

    Seriously, it sounded like Nowak the interviewer was trying to get away and end the interview but Woz just would not shut up.

  7. Actually, Woz has a point: He apparently said maybe the iPod should be spun off into its own division, but Nowak translated that to spun off as a separate company. Those are very different things.

    (Woz is apparently not up on the latest corporate structure at Apple, which is likely, otherwise he would have known that the iPod already has its own division within Apple.)

  8. Woz said: “I think spinning off a separate division for iPods makes an awful lot of sense.”

    Nowak, in his original article, attributes to Woz: “But they are distracting Apple from its focus, and the company may be better served by spinning off the business.”

    Woz is correct that he was quoted out-of-context, IMO.

  9. This is a perfect example of why Apple’s policy of secrecy is so important to the future.

    Apple has plenty of trouble just keeping expectations in line when they don’t hand out anything to media outlets. Imagine what it would be like if the top execs and product managers had free reign to the US press (meaning; less accurate than our kiwi friends who still write as if journalism had integrity*).

    Woz talked as if he (we) still worked at Apple. He’s been gone for over 20 years. He’s a hero, a statesman, a story within the story of Apple, but he doesn’t have much going on these days.

    *now, the folks in NZ need to remove that crumb about “needs Windows Media Player” to run the audio interview. Last I checked, my Mac plays MP3 files just fine without WMP.

    Tera Patricks
    Tera Talks

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