Following yesterday’s education-focused Apple media event in Chicago, CEO Tim Cook returned to Lane Tech College Prep High School today for a taped interview with Recode, which tweeted key details from the conversation. In addition to discussing education, Cook addressed a handful of recent topics, ranging from the Facebook debacle and user privacy to Apple’s next campus and jobs.
Asked about Facebook, Cook said that while he believes that the best regulation is self-regulation — without government involvement — it is too late at this point for Facebook to regulate itself. “It’s clear to me that something, some large profound change is needed,” Cook said. “I’m personally not a big fan of regulation because sometimes regulation can have unexpected consequences to it, however I think this certain situation is so dire, and has become so large, that probably some well-crafted regulation is necessary.”
Cook was asked what he would be doing right now if he was Mark Zuckerberg. “I wouldn’t be in this situation,” Cook replied. He also reiterated Apple’s view that “privacy to us is a human right, a civil liberty,” and that Apple has elected not to monetize its users’ personal lives.
He also offered some fairly disconcerting advice on how users should protect their privacy, in light of the Facebook situation:
We’re not doing the beauty contest. That’s not Apple. … From our point of view, we did not want to create this contest because I think what comes out of that is you wind up putting people through a ton of work … [only for a company to select one winner] … So that is a case where you have a winner and a lot of losers, unfortunately. I don’t like that.
On education, Cook spoke about the need for people to get used to the idea of lifelong training, as some jobs will be cannibalized and replaced by others. While he said that he doesn’t think that everyone needs to become a programmer, he called it “important that people learn the basics of coding,” because coding is a form of personal expression — a language. He also downplayed the $300 entry cost of an educational iPad as a reasonable expenditure for something that isn’t replaced every year.
Cook also spoke about DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration policy that has been thrown into chaos due to recent U.S. executive and legislative actions.
The DACA situation is one that I am personally, as an American, deeply offended by. The DACA situation is not an immigration issue. It’s a moral issue. … I don’t see this as a partisan issue, this is about America, it’s that simple. I am very disappointed with both parties. I’m personally lobbying Congress on it.
Titled “Revolution: Apple Changing the World,” the full Recode interview with Cook will air on Friday, April 6 at 8 p.m. Eastern on MSNBC.