Apple isn’t winning any popularity contests by threatening to fire an employee for helping a customer.
According to The Mac Observer (TMO), an Apple customer posted a TikTok video asking for help in dealing with a stolen iPhone. The user had tracked the phone to China, but the thieves were trying to extort the victim into removing the phone from her iCloud account under threat of her personal information being released publicly. As anyone who has sold a used iPhone knows, it’s important to remove a phone from one’s iCloud account so the new owner can set it up properly.
An Apple engineer, Paris Campbell, saw the video and posted one of her own, encouraging the victim not to give in to the thief’s demands. Instead, she pointed out that her data was protected as long as she didn’t give the perpetrators what they wanted.
In the course of the video, Campbell did not explicitly say she worked for Apple, only saying she was “a certified hardware engineer for a certain company that likes to talk about fruit.” Even that measure may not have been entirely necessary, as Apple’s rules do not prohibit its employees from identifying what company they work for.
Despite her precautions, and despite the positive response to her video, Campbell was told by her manager that she must take the video down or face disciplinary action, as the company’s social media policies prohibit revealing confidential information or posting anything about employees or customers.. The disciplinary action could include losing her job.
As TMO points out, Campbell did absolutely nothing to make Apple look bad. In fact, the argument could be made that Campbell was a prime example of a good employee, one that went out of her way to help a customer on her own time.
Instead, the only one that comes off looking bad is Apple itself. Campbell should be getting recognition, not threats, for going above and beyond to assist the company’s customers.
So much for Apple ‘Thinking Different.’