Tim Cook Discusses World AIDS Day, PRODUCT(RED), and Apple’s Values in New Interview

Following the announcement of Apple's annual fundraising for World AIDS Day this morning, USA Today has now published a new interview with CEO Tim Cook, discussing the lengths Apple goes to in support of projects like PRODUCT(RED) and what it means to Cook personally. The fundraising will donate $1 to (RED)'s fight against AIDS for every purchase made with Apple Pay in an Apple Store, on Apple.com, or through the Apple Store app from December 1-6.

Cook said that the company "wanted there to be something for everyone" in terms of donating, learning about the issue at hand, or simply being excited for a new Apple accessory launch. There are four new PRODUCT(RED) items, including an iPhone 7 Smart Battery Case, iPhone SE Case, Pill+ Portable Speaker, and Beats Solo3 Wireless On-Ear Headphones. (RED) CEO Deb Dugan said that the company, combined with Apple's spotlight on the issue, has positively impacted the lives of 70 million individuals suffering from HIV/AIDS.

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"We put our weight behind lots of things in the civil rights area," says Cook. "Similarly, I think it's key that people think about what they stand for and help their communities. We always say that we want to leave the world better than we found it. So, we try to thoughtfully decide how we can do that."
The topic of Donald Trump's upcoming presidency is briefly touched upon, centering around the possible negative ramifications for Apple and other more left-leaning tech companies. When asked if he's concerned whether Trump supporters would denounce Apple because of its anti-Trump viewpoints, Cook remained adamant that Apple -- and any company -- should retain a strong central value system, whether or not those values misalign with some of its customers.
"Of course corporations should have values, because people should have values," says the soft-spoken tech leader, who has been vocal on a range of civic issues, from gay rights to privacy rules. "And corporations are just a bunch of people."
Cook was also asked to address critics who claim that his stance domestically on certain issues, namely gay rights, is hypocritical given that homosexuality is a crime "in about a fifth of the 100-plus countries Apple does business in." Another point claims that the company's political leanings help generate more sales towards its younger millennial customer base.

Cook responded:
"We'll always help the most people through our products, because they empower people to do great things themselves," he says. "But this (RED) partnership allows us to touch a group of people we normally wouldn't. Sub-Saharan Africa is not a big marketplace for us. This is about trying to lift people up."

"We haven't shied away from being visible on a number of topics, and if it's something in our wheelhouse, we'll always be visible and stand up to protect as well as advance people's rights," he says.
Apple and Tim Cook have supported, and fought for, a number of movements and causes over the years, most recently holding a fundraiser for Hillary Clinton, fighting for user privacy and security against the FBI, and marching in annual support of LGBT rights during the Pride Festival in San Francisco.

Cook's final note on Apple's bold stances was that he and the company don't intend to stop moving forward in the fight for acceptance, inclusiveness, and support in all of these areas and more. "Every generation has a responsibility of expanding the definition of those rights, to move forward. So we'll very much continue to do that."

Check out the full USA Today interview with Tim Cook here.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.


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Apple announces more (RED) gadgets to mark World AIDS Day

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Ten years ago, Apple partnered with product (RED) to offer limited edition products that raise awareness of AIDS. 

Now, to acknowledge World AIDS Day, which this year falls on Dec. 1, Apple has announced a new lineup of (RED)-branded gadgets and games in its App Store. 

“Thanks to the vision and dedication of (RED), an AIDS-free generation is within our reach. We want to leave the world better than we found it, and that’s why our longtime partnership with (RED) remains so important to us,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a statement. 

Besides the current lineup of (RED) products, which are available year-round, new (RED) gadgets available starting today include an iPhone 7 Smart Battery Case, iPhone SE Case, Beats Solo 3 Wireless On-Ear Headphones and the Pill+ Portable Speaker. Read more…

More about World Aids Day, Red, Apple, Tech, and Gadgets

Apple to Donate Up to $1 Million to (RED) in Honor of World AIDS Day

Apple has announced it will once again honor World AIDS Day by donating $1 to (RED)'s fight against AIDS for every purchase made with Apple Pay at an Apple Store, on Apple.com, or through the Apple Store app, up to a total of $1 million, starting tomorrow through December 6.
“The gift of life is the most important gift that anyone can give,” said Tim Cook. “Thanks to the vision and dedication of (RED), an AIDS-free generation is within our reach. We want to leave the world better than we found it, and that’s why our longtime partnership with (RED) remains so important to us.”
Bank of America will likewise make a donation for every Apple Pay transaction made using its cards, also up to $1 million, on December 1-7.

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Apple is also releasing new PRODUCT(RED) products, including an iPhone 7 Smart Battery Case and iPhone SE Case, alongside the Pill+ Portable Speaker and Beats Solo3 Wireless On-Ear Headphones, all of which are or will be available today. A portion of proceeds raised from these products support The Global Fund.

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Meanwhile, for the next week, a number of popular App Store games will be offering limited-edition, custom (RED) content. All proceeds from the associated in-app purchases will go to The Global Fund. The 20 apps set to participate:

• Angry Birds 2
• Angry Birds POP!
• Best Fiends
• Best Fiends Forever
• Boom Beach
• Candy Crush Jelly Saga
• Clash of Clans
• Clash Royale
• CSR2
• Episode

• Farm Heroes Saga
• FarmVille: Tropic Escape
• FIFA Mobile
• Hay Day
• MARVEL Contest of Champions
• PewDiePie’s Tuber Simulator
• Plants vs. Zombies Heroes
• SimCity BuildIt
• War Dragons
• YAHTZEE With Buddies

In the United States, Apple is offering a free iTunes download of The Lazarus Effect, the documentary about the mission of (RED). Meanwhile, 100 percent of U.S. proceeds raised from The Killers’ holiday album Don’t Waste Your Wishes, exclusively available on iTunes, will go to The Global Fund.

Apple says customers around the world can also easily donate directly to (RED) through iTunes to join the fight against AIDS. Meanwhile, a record 400+ Apple retail stores around the world will once again turn their logos red or feature (RED) window decals on December 1 to raise visibility for World AIDS Day.


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