I've read the files from a lot of background FBI investigations; it's pretty rare in my experience that this much derogatory information gets dredged up. Often the agents only interview employers and people who are suggested by the candidate. It's obviously unclear who these quoted folks are, but if they were among the people Jobs referred the agents to, then he didn't know his friends very well.Consider this another contribution by Jobs, to the world: When you're getting interviewed by the F.B.I., you should now know exactly what you're getting into.
The FBI file of one Steve Paul Jobs has now been released! While knowing the character makeup of the deified technology person isn’t nearly as exciting for Apple fans as the day of release for all the wonderful shiny gadgets his legacy is constructed of, for a segment of the human population skeptical of Jobs’ status as a Thundergod of Nerddom, it’s quite a thrill. So: Why does it exist? And what’s in it?
As for the “Why,” well, Jobs was being considered for a presidential appointment to a place on George Bush’s Export Council, which he actually served on. Among other reasons why you’d want to have an F.B.I. file on one of the most important innovators in the history of technology.
As for what’s in it, to be fair, the only truly new and revealing stuff in here is about a bomb threat on Jobs and the fact that he even had an F.B.I. file this juicy on him. But there’s plenty of other fun stuff, like gossip from his friends who aren’t that great of friends, gossip from his frienemies who are clearly great frienemies, details about his drug use, his absentee father status, and lots of other fun stuff. Which we’ve put in an even more fun slideshow. Who says a lengthy government document can’t be entertaining? If anyone were going to innovate the form, it’d be Steve Jobs. Which, as you’ll see, he definitely did.
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