Top Apple executives claim to be supportive, but worry that if Tim Cook comes out, the public perception of Apple could be harmed
Tim Cook, Apple's CEO now that Steve Jobs has announced his resignation, has been described as being both intensely private and a life-long bachelor, but it wasn't until this year that rumors started to spread that he was gay.
Cook has been working with Jobs for more than 13 years, having joined Apple in March 1998. And he has long been running the company's day-to-day operations. But the laser-like focus of the tech-blogging community was not turned to him until Jobs, Apple's iconic figurehead, announced his most recent medical leave in January of this year. It was then that Valleywag, a Gawker property that covers Silicon Valley, outed Cook with two anonymous sources, making a joke of the whole situation. "[O]ur tech executive source claims Cook is into Asian guys, a tidbit that prompted another tech observer, with whom we shared the item, to propose some strategic matchmaking that would pair Cook with Google hotshot Ben Ling," Ryan Tate wrote.
Four months later, Out magazine bumped down talk-show host Ellen Degeneres to place Cook at the top of its annual Power 50 index, a list that ranks the most influential gay and lesbian individuals at the time.