Skip to content
Subscriber Only

Apple, Google, and the Hubris of Silicon Valley's Hiring Conspiracy

Silicon Valley’s vast wealth and a warped sense of entitlement led to an audacious conspiracy to suppress salaries

Behind this week’s cover
Photographs by Harald Franzen/ZUMA (Jobs); Pete Marovich/ZUMA (Schmidt)

Steve Jobs wouldn’t appear to have been an emoticon guy, but history will show that on at least one occasion, when words failed to convey his delight, he resorted to one. It was March 2007, and Jobs had received an e-mail from Eric Schmidt, then Google’s chief executive officer and a board member at Apple. Schmidt wanted to let Jobs know that Google would terminate “within the hour” a recruiter who’d dared to contact an Apple employee in violation of a “do not call” policy between the companies. Schmidt abjectly apologized, adding: “Should this ever happen again please let me know immediately and we will handle. Thanks!! Eric.”