Last night, Steve Jobs of Apple Inc. and Pixar Animation passed away. The reaction on the Internet was tremendous. Normally, when a notable person dies, the reaction on social media can be pretty insensitive. Jokes are made, fingers are pointed, and people question the actual impact of the deceased individual. Not this time.
I was surprised and impressed to see my Twitter timeline filled with more condolences than jokes. There are still handfuls of insensitive remarks, but the vast majority of people realize the profound impact Jobs had on our lives.
On Twitter, timelines were filled with quotes by, about, and dedicated to Jobs. Several of Twitter’s top trending topics were related to Jobs. Trending topics include #RIPSteveJobs, #ThankYouSteve, #iSad, “STAY HUNGRY,” and “think different.” “Stay hungry” is a quote from Jobs’ commencement address at Stanford University’s 114th Commencement in 2005. Even other tech guys such as Bill Gates and Steve Wozniak were trending as people tweeted and retweeted quotes from the two on how they felt about Jobs’ passing.
There were also a lot of clever salutes to Jobs and the products Apple has created. Jersey Shore’s Vinny Guadagnino tweeted “Everybody put an iPhone up in the air one time #ripstevejobs” with a link to a picture of him holding his iPhone, and it was retweeted over 100 times. Many people also started chain tweets along the lines of “RT if you are using an Apple product right now.”
Grief was also expressed on Facebook, where Mark Zuckerberg himself posted a status update saying: “Steve, thank you for being a mentor and a friend. Thanks for showing that what you build can change the world. I will miss you”
Apple’s homepage has been cleaned of all the announcements of new products from the event on Tuesday, replaced by a simple but powerful picture of Jobs. The picture links to another page that says a few words about Jobs and encourages people to share their thoughts by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Google’s homepage also pays tribute to Jobs, right below the search box.
On Tumblr, which is popular for sharing images and memes, people were sharing amazing images in memory of Steve Jobs. We’ve put together a slideshow of a few of the pictures we liked the most.