Thursday, November 2, 2017

Fired for What!? - iPhone X footage

Employers often have a special interest in protecting information as confidential. For example, lawyers owe their clients a duty of confidentiality, Coke has the textbook trade secret example of the "secret formula," and tech gadget companies protect their product development.

Unfortunately, sometimes protecting those secrets leads to harsh results. One such example: Apple fires iPhone X engineer after daughter’s hands-on video goes viral (daughter's tearful response video included). Short version: daughter visits dad at Apple campus and records footage of the unreleased iPhone X; she posts it to YouTube; it goes viral; and Apple fires dad.

You have to feel a little bad for the father-daughter duo. That said, it should be common sense (and, apparently, formal Apple policy) that employees can't have guests recording video of unreleased products. It's generally a good idea for employers with confidential information to have confidentiality agreements with employees and emphasize the importance of protecting that information.