I am poring over my Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin feeds today and reading verse after verse extolling Steve Jobs and what he gave the world. I even posted one myself. I am struck by the depth of emotion that his death evokes.
The majority of those posting never met the man. They did not know him. Their connection was through the devices that his company created. But their grief is real, I don’t doubt it.
I think it speaks to need we have to put a face on a brand. To connect on an emotional level with our chosen purveyor of goods. Our attachment is to the devices and the brand, but we have a need to transfer that love and respect to a single person. Not a company. Not a team of engineers. A single person. If Jobs still had a partner, an equal, I wonder if the outpouring would be as great. I don’t think so.
It’s a terrible loss, no doubt. But what are we really grieving?