Another strike from Getty Images

13 May 2011 | in Updates/Announcements

Bad news folks.

For the second time now I got a complaint from Getty Images about using pictures from their collection on all about Steve Jobs.com. This time photographers Diana Walker and Doug Menuez were CCed in the emails, as it was their work that was the focus of Getty. This was kind of a big deal for me, because their pictures of Steve Jobs are among the best in his career. This is not surprising, because both have had a very special relationship with him.

One could argue that Doug Menuez was the ‘official photographer’ of NeXT. The reason Steve made this decisions is indirectly related in his biological sister’s book, Mona Simpson’s A Regular Guy.

He stacke dup beautiful black-and-whites of the team, the automated factory on its first day of operations, the intricate assembly line, evvery element picked by him, even the corrugated floor. “Maybe it was all better before,” he said. There were no good pictures of [Apple]’ early days. Just snapshots, Polaroids with cluttered  backgrounds and thumbs over the lens. […] But he’d tried to keep the scraps and pieces of [NeXT] together, to make one clear book to hand on. And the documents were there, ordered and elegant. Yet this time, maybe no one would want them.

This is why Doug was given almost full access to everything that was going on at NeXT from 1986 to 1991. As you know, NeXT was a very secretive company — it’s actually there that Steve experimented with the absolute secrecy that has now become one of Apple’s trademarks. So it’s especially uncanny and pretty unique that photographs of, say, the design sessions of NeXT Cube, were allowed to be taken. But they were, and you can still see the majority of the results in Doug Menuez’ Stanford photo collection.
I had to remove about four dozen photographs of Doug that were still up on the website, most of them in the 1985-1990 gallery, and in the NeXT factory page which was deleted as a result (no pictures were left).

Diana Walker is another story. As far as I know, she is the only photographer that Steve Jobs ever allowed to follow him in his private life. Three sessions are especially famous:

Overall, I had to remove about 30 pictures of Diana Walker, mostly the three aforementioned photo albums.

Although these losses will be impossible to compensate, given the uniquess and quality and the pictures removed, I am doing my best to keep the website as complete as possible with Steve Jobs material. That’s why I just updated it with 8 new caricatures (for a grand total of 103) and a new picture of the month, a rare picture portraying Steve with Peter van Cuylenburg, which I talked about four weeks ago. Directly related to that, I recently found this treasure trove of NeXT memorabilia on Flickr, including this press release of Van Cuylenburg’s ‘amicable’ departure (read ‘firing’).