Former Apple Manager Calls Steve Jobs 'An Abusive Husband to an Entire Company'

Posted April 22, 2013 at 5:06pm by iClarified | Please help us and submit a translation by clicking here | 11316 views

Erin Caton, a former manager at Apple, has posted on Medium calling Steve Jobs a 'giant jerk' and blaming him for the failed launch of MobileMe.

In a post entitled, 'You are not Steve Jobs', Caton acknowledges that by writing this she will never work at Apple again. She then details her two personal experiences with Jobs.

First, she says Jobs cut in line ahead of her at the office cafeteria after just being hired.

I said to my co-worker, “Who is this douche?” as I had never seen an Apple keynote at that point. My co-worker whispered, “That’s STEVE.” Okay, I noted to myself, Steve is a bit of a dick.

Second, Caton reveals that she was an Engineering Project Manager for the revamp of .Mac to MobileMe. There were three to four levels of bosses between her and Steve Jobs.

We had been telling our bosses that we did not feel confident about our launch date for a long time. We gave any number of suggestions of what we could do to launch that wouldn’t be such a giant production, but would totally have worked.

Their suggestions were apparently ignored somewhere in the command line and Apple launched MobileMe with a bang.

Then it fell down launch night. And all the lovely troopers (because everyone who works at Apple is completely kick-ass and does the hell out of their jobs), worked literally around the clock to fix it. Sleeping under desks, shuttling from hotels nearby, tagging in the next coder for their shift, until it was back up.

At the time, Adam Lashinsky wrote that following the disastrous launch, Steve Jobs asked the MobileMe team what it was supposed to do. When someone answered, he said, "So why the fuck doesn't it do that?"

He continued to say, "You've tarnished Apple's reputation ... You should hate each other for having let each other down ... Mossberg, our friend, is no longer writing good things about us."

On the spot, Jobs then named a new executive to run MobileMe.

Caton also describes that meeting:

Once it was up, we (at least a hundred of us) got called into a meeting with Steve Jobs. We all walked over to the building like we were headed to the guillotine. He stood in front of us and yelled at us, told us that we should be mad at each other, said we could have done a staggered launch and complained that we didn’t even try to do all the things that we (those on the ground floor of production that actually make the fucking products of the world) had been begging to do. It was the world’s best de-motivational speech.

While it's likely that Steve Jobs never heard their concerns, Caton blames the failed launch on Steve Jobs being a 'giant jerk' who was 'an abusive husband to an entire company' making his employees fear him to the point where they weren't brave enough to suggest a launch that wasn't Apple-like.

He made himself so fearful and terrible that an entire group of amazing, talented, hard working people, ended up getting screamed at wrongfully. It was his fault that the MobileMe launch went so poorly, not ours.

You can read an internal email from Steve Jobs to employees about the botched launch of MobileMe here or you can read Caton's full post at the link below.

Is Caton right? Or is this just the rant of an angry ex-employee. Let us know what you think in the comments...

Read More [via SAI]

Add Comment
Jake - August 5, 2013 at 5:34pm
i'm just throwing this out there. i've been seeing a lot of crap about how he was a douche an asshole a jerk....but seriously if you were running such a large industry as he was wouldn't you get a little pissed when a project fails? on top of that the email it has on here is him just letting them know he's disappointed and expected more from his company. she was just butt hurt people didn't listen to her when she said it wasn't ready....IF she said it wasn't ready that is.
henreeG - April 23, 2013 at 3:55pm
I guess none of these Jobs commenters have seen "Pirates of Silicon Valley" I suppose if they invented an iDick, everyone defending Steve would just stick it up their ass?
Say what? - April 23, 2013 at 7:11am
Dear author, read the her message again. The "giant jerk" she refers to wass her boss, who got fired, and not Steve Jobs. Get your story straight, will ya?
Gigel - April 23, 2013 at 5:15pm
Who's willya?
The Programmer - April 24, 2013 at 10:06pm
I know him, first name: 'will' last name: 'Ya' He was in a movie with henreeG. The Movie was called "Super Tweenk" 10-min into the Movie I realized Super Tweenk was NOT a jam packed action Super Hero Movie, It was more like a buffett movie!... HenreeG was the receiver of all kinds of tube steaks and he took as many as can fit in his mouth!... So many Calories slow down henreeG cuz your the Super Tweenk!...
Brainiak - April 23, 2013 at 7:02am
Now that he is gone they can blame him! Sad but true! this is how people escape from their own failure.
Rayan - April 23, 2013 at 5:06am
Dear Ms. Caton, I assume it's miss, because of the abusive husband reference. Perhaps it isn't your fault after all. I blame the person who recruited you to Apple especially since you couldn't recognize Steve Jobs. Ms. Caton you must realize how unfortunate it is that you didn't recognize the most talked about CEO in the world at the time. Furthermore, at the level that Apple does business, it is always going to be a high pressure situation. If you can't handle the pressure, you should have left, Ms. Caton. And perhaps that's why you left. But to bring it up now speaks more of you than Steve Jobs. And everybody knows Steve Jobs was a jerk. Like so many before me had commented, it's no big secret. Most men driven to succeed are jerks. Finally, it is appalling for you to bring up this issue now after the man is dead. Show some class, Ms. Caton. Show some respect. Regretfully, Rayan
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