Millions of people have shared what they thought were Steve Jobs’ Last Words. But guess what – they have all shared a FAKE STORY.
We will tell you the truth about Steve Jobs, so you won’t fall for these fake stories. Don’t forget to SHARE this article, because it’s the only way to stop the spread of such fake stories!
Originally posted @ 2015-11-11
Updated @ 2016-02-18 : Added two new sections on Steve Jobs being on artificial respiration, and his stay in the hospital.
Updated @ 2017-01-14 : Added a new preface, and updated several parts of the article.
Updated @ 2019-09-20 : Revamped the article, and made it more streamlined
The Steve Jobs’ Last Words Hoax
This is the infamous Steve Jobs’ Last Words that have been shared by hundreds of thousands of people on social media and email chain letters.
I reached the pinnacle of success in the business world. In others’ eyes, my life is an epitome of success.
However, aside from work, I have little joy. In the end, wealth is only a fact of life that I am accustomed to.
At this moment, lying on the sick bed and recalling my whole life, I realize that all the recognition and wealth that I took so much pride in, have paled and become meaningless in the face of impending death.
In the darkness, I look at the green lights from the life supporting machines and hear the humming mechanical sounds, I can feel the breath of god of death drawing closer…
Now I know, when we have accumulated sufficient wealth to last our lifetime, we should pursue other matters that are unrelated to wealth…
Should be something that is more important:
Perhaps relationships, perhaps art, perhaps a dream from younger days
Non-stop pursuing of wealth will only turn a person into a twisted being, just like me.
God gave us the senses to let us feel the love in everyone’s heart, not the illusions brought about by wealth.
The wealth I have won in my life I cannot bring with me. What I can bring is only the memories precipitated by love.
Were Those Really Steve Jobs’ Last Words?
Short answer – NO.
How do we know this? Let’s take a look…
We know what his last words really were
On the 30th of October 2011, the New York Times printed an eulogy by his sister, Mona Simpson. In that eulogy, she described his last moment :
Steve’s final words, hours earlier, were monosyllables, repeated three times.
Before embarking, he’d looked at his sister Patty, then for a long time at his children, then at his life’s partner, Laurene, and then over their shoulders past them.
Steve’s final words were:
OH WOW. OH WOW. OH WOW.
Steve Jobs Was Not On Artificial Respiration
The fake speech claims that Steve Jobs was on artificial respiration. That’s not true. Although his family has been very private about his final days, we do know that he was not being kept alive by a mechanical ventilator.
The intubation required would have prevented him from saying anything. If he was being kept alive by a mechanical ventilator, he wouldn’t be able to say “Oh wow. Oh wow. Oh wow.” as his sister revealed were his true last words.
In fact, on August 11, 2011 – less than two months before he died, Steve Jobs asked Tim Cook to visit him. As recounted in Tim Cook’s book – Becoming Steve Jobs, Steve Jobs was more than capable of talking lucidly even then :
He told me he had decided that I should be CEO. I thought then that he thought he was going to live a lot longer when he said this, because we got into a whole level of discussion about what would it mean for me to be CEO with him as a chairman. I asked him, ‘What do you really not want to do that you’re doing?’
“It was an interesting conversation,” Cook says, with a wistful laugh. “He says, ‘You make all the decisions.’ I go, ‘Wait. Let me ask you a question.’ I tried to pick something that would incite him. So I said, ‘You mean that if I review an ad and I like it, it should just run without your okay?’ And he laughed and said, ‘Well, I hope you’d at least ask me!’
I asked him two or three times, ‘Are you sure you want to do this?’ because I saw him getting better at that point in time. I went over there often during the week, and sometimes on the weekends. Every time I saw him he seemed to be getting better. He felt that way as well. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out that way.”
Finally, if he was really kept alive by a mechanical ventilator, it would have kept him alive. He wouldn’t have died of respiratory arrest, which was the immediate cause of death.
The fact that he did indeed die of respiratory arrest is evidence that he was not on artificial respiration
Steve Jobs Did Not Die In A Hospital
Alternate versions of this fake speech refers to him being in a hospital bed. Steve Jobs died at home, not in a hospital. The New York Times noted :
In his final months, Mr. Jobs’s home — a large and comfortable but relatively modest brick house in a residential neighborhood — was surrounded by security guards. His driveway’s gate was flanked by two black S.U.V.’s.
We don’t have an exact date for when he was confined to his home for his last days, but we do know that by August 11, 2011, he was permanently at home :
“He said, ‘I want to talk to you about something,’ ” remembers Cook. “This was when he was home all the time, and I asked when, and he said, ‘Now.’”
None of the books written about him refers to these fake Last Words
He had an official biography written by Walter Isaacson (Steve Jobs, ISBN 978-1501127625).
Walter Isaacson was given unprecedented access to his personal life, including over 40 interviews with Steve Jobs himself.
If Steve Jobs wanted to pass along such a message, he would have done it in that book. There is no mention of such a message in that biography.
He also had many books written about him :
- Steve Jobs : The Man In The Machine,
- Steve Jobs : The Man Who Thought Different,
- Becoming Steve Jobs : The Evolution of a Reckless Upstart into a Visionary Leader,
- Steve Jobs : His Story, etc.
None of them mentions this fake message.
Steve Jobs did not believe in God
The fake quote refers to God twice, which Steve would never do because he did not believe in God.
He was a Zen Buddhist, not the Lutheran Christian he was brought up to be.
Buddhism is a religion, but their adherents do not believe in God or gods.
Unbelievably bad grammar
The fake quote is replete with bad grammar. That is something Steve Jobs would never condone, being the perfectionist that he was. Needless to say, the writing style was not his either.
Steve Jobs was not afraid of death, he made use of it
The fake quote framed Steve Jobs as regretting that he spent his life in the pursuit of success at the expense of his family.
This cannot be further from the truth. Steve Jobs not only embraced his impending demise, he used it to spur him to make the most of his time left.
During his famous commencement speech at Stanford University in 2005, he said that “Death is very likely the single best invention of life“.
He then expounded on using that knowledge that our impending deaths to spur ourselves to greater heights, and to do what we really want to do in life :
Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.
Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking.
Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice.
And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.
They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.
Steve Jobs did not pursue wealth, only his vision for Apple
The fake Steve Jobs’ Last Words allude to a mindless pursuit of wealth.
However, this cannot be further from the truth, because Steve Jobs earned a cool annual salary of $1 since he returned to a struggling Apple in 1997.
He was not the only corporate executive to do this, of course, as they can be compensated through alternate means like bonuses, stock options, etc.
Steve Jobs was notable, though, for not taking any alternative form of compensation since 2003.
He took virtually nothing in compensation for his time and effort at Apple because he was not pursuing wealth, but his vision.
His wealth, and his position at Apple, were the means to the end, not the goal itself.
Help Stop This Fake Steve Jobs Story
If you see the Steve Jobs Last Words story being shared, please DO NOT share it. Share this article with your friends instead.
Clickbait websites LOVE this fake story about Steve Job’s last words, because people keep sharing it and giving them likes, shares and clicks.
Don’t be part of this hoax, and stop helping them make money using fake stories.
The Message Is More Important Than The Truth?
When told the truth, many people were surprisingly hostile. They either refused to accept the truth, or told us that the message is more important than the truth.
The truth is – when we share a fake story about a famous person, it teaches other people that it’s okay to lie about people, as long as it’s for a good reason.
Do we really want to teach our children that? Do we really believe that it’s legal or even moral to tell lies about other people, even if it’s for a good reason?
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