The first ever issue of Macworld is a classic. Apple co-founder Steve Jobs dressed in a pinstripe suit, standing over one the most revolutionary products in the history of tech – the original Mac. But as with most things involving Steve Jobs, the story behind the photoshoot is filled with all the requisite drama and expletives you’d expect from a young Jobs, who was 29 when the above photo was taken.
In an interesting retrospective, Macworld founder David Bunnell recalls some of the saucier details about Steve Jobs and the story behind the iconic magazine cover.
Steve was called in only when everything was perfect. All we needed was to have him stand in position for 10 minutes and then he could go, just as he had requested. Of course, with Steve Jobs, you have to anticipate the unexpected.
Steve walked in dressed in a beautiful pinstriped, double-breasted suit with a white shirt and red tie. Right away, there was a problem–Steve didn’t like the images we had chosen for the Mac screens.
Aware that he might bolt any moment, Andrew and I worked feverishly to fix them–putting up exactly what Steve said he wanted. Meanwhile he stared at Mosgrove, and said, “Are you one of those type of photographers who takes dozens of photos hoping one of them will turn out okay?”
Will just looked at him and shrugged.
“Take a picture of this,” Steve said, holding up his middle finger. We stared in disbelief. Someone must have keyed his Mercedes again, I remember thinking.
In a great capper to an already great story, Bunnell writes that Jobs soon called him up and said that he had changed his mind, and that he didn’t want his mug to grace the cover of the magazine. Bunnell lied to Jobs and told him that it was too late, that the “cover is already at the printer and we can’t change it.”
In actuality, Bunnell says that only a few pages were at the printer and that there was more than enough time to switch the cover if they truly wanted to. Looking back, I think he made the right call.
This, though, isn’t the first time we’ve heard of Jobs giving someone, or something, the one finger salute.
Below, Jobs gives the middle finger to IBM, sometime in the early 80’s.