With Apple having forced In Icons to discontinue manufacturing its ultra-lifelike Steve Jobs action figure, hungry Steve Jobs fanatics have taken to eBay, hoping to get their hands on the doll while they still can. After facing lawsuit threats from Apple, which claims it owns any likeness to Jobs, the company making the latest Jobs figurine has opted to forgo an expensive legal battle. "Though we still believe that we have not overstepped any legal boundaries, we have decided to completely stop the offer, production and sale of the Steve Jobs figurine out of our heartfelt sensitivity to the feelings of the Jobs family," In Icon's Tandy Cheung told PC World. And with confirmation that the Steve Jobs figure will be in limited supply, the bidding has taken off on the Internet's auction block.
All this copyright hullabaloo has caused a 3,000 percent increase in the figurine's value. Before all of the Apple copyright hullabaloo, In Icons had planned on selling the doll for $99 starting in February. But as soon as Apple so much as threatened the company, eBay sellers knew the value of the product, raising the price to between $130 and $224.99. That was before In Icons confirmed on January 7 that it had sold out of materials and ceased production. An official announcement came on January 15th, and now the price has shot up to between $2,500 and $3,100.
The eBay rush to get a Jobs figurine is influenced, of course, by scarcity. eBay sellers are admitting they don't even know if they will receive their action figures, ordered before In Icons stopped production, and will refund buyers if for some reason the order doesn't come through. But not only has In Icons ceased production of the doll, making it a very limited edition Jobs collectible, the eBay auction may not last too long.The last time a company angered Apple with its homage to the belated CEO, Apple not only threatened legal action, but also ordered the removal of the eBay auction page. With both supplies and time limited, fanatics are willing to pay over $3000 for an action figure.
In Icons says it has stopped production out of respect and not because it did anything wrong legally. "Four years ago I created a single figurine of Steve which I placed on my desk next to my Mac," writes Cheung in his official announcement (below). "I decided to share this memento with the rest of his fans as a commemoration to Steve." But even with that very heart-felt explanation, Apple wouldn't have it. And now only the most ravenous fans can get their hands on the creation.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.