Tim Cook: Tech CEOs, beware: If you piss off Mark Zuckerberg, he might order his employees to stop using your company’s products.
The Facebook founder was reportedly so enraged by criticism from Apple CEO Tim Cook that he personally instructed executives to stop using iPhones in favor of Android devices.
That’s one revelation from a new bombshell report from The New York Times, which details the social network’s many failures to properly address Russian interference in the 2016 election and subsequent privacy concerns raised by critics. But the incident highlights just how personally Facebook’s founder took the criticism from Apple CEO Tim Cook.
From The NYT:
“We’re not going to traffic in your personal life,” Tim Cook, Apple’s chief executive, said in an MSNBC interview. “Privacy to us is a human right. It’s a civil liberty.” (Mr. Cook’s criticisms infuriated Mr. Zuckerberg, who later ordered his management team to use only Android phones, since the operating system has far more users than Apple’s.)
Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the claim that Zuckerberg had personally told executives to stop using iPhones. But the two companies have publicly traded barbs for months.
Apple’s CEO, known to be a staunch defender of privacy rights, has repeatedly and publicly called out Facebook for its shoddy record on privacy. Zuckerberg later called Cook’s remarks “extremely glib” and Sheryl Sandberg has also said she “respectfully disagrees” with Cook.
But Zuckerberg’s wrath wasn’t just limited to him executive’s choice in smartphones. Behind the scenes, Facebook also reportedly hired a public affairs company whose staffers wrote negative articles about Apple, according to The New York Times. Months later, Apple became the first $1 trillion company in history while Facebook’s market value dipped more than $100 billion.