Apple CEO Tim Cook is currently in Europe, and over the course of the last few days, he’s visited Germany, France, and Italy. Earlier this week we shared an interview he did with a German news site, and today he spoke with a French newspaper and students in Italy as part of an appearance at the Osservatorio Permanente.

Cook commented on topics like journalism, privacy, and immigration, with his comments shared by Italian site Macitynet.it [Google Translate] and French newspaper Les Echoes (via CNBC).

Image shared by Tim Cook on Twitter

According to Cook, while the internet has brought “many positive things,” fake news is one negative. From a translation of the original interview:

All of us lovers of democracy and freedom must think that separating the false from the true is the basis of freedom. Quality journalism is the foundation of every democracy and an open and free press is essential.

Cook also spoke about a topic that he’s covered many times in the past – privacy. He reiterated his belief that Apple customers are not Apple’s product, and that Apple will not sell customer data. “At Apple, we will never treat you as products but as customers with dignity and respect,” he said.

Along with touching on privacy, Cook highlighted Apple’s environmental efforts, such as the fact that Apple is run on 100 percent renewable energy, and he spoke on human rights. “We do not do it because it’s required by regulations, but because it is a moral imperative,” he said.

Apple supports immigration because wealthy countries must “accept migrants who are fleeing difficult situations,” said Cook. Cook added that he would like for young people and children to be able to stay in the United States to study, referencing his support for DACA, or the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration policy.

Cook had advice for students regarding smartphone usage. “Smartphones must bring you closer to those who are far away – don’t leave those close to you,” he said. “If you spend more time looking at your smartphones than people’s eyes, you’re wrong.”

Cook also spoke about cryptocurrency according to CNBC, with statements originally shared by French site Les Echoes. Cook said that currency should stay in the hands of countries, and private companies should not look to gain power with cryptocurrency.

“No. I really think that a currency should stay in the hands of countries. I’m not comfortable with the idea of a private group setting up a competing currency,” he said.

“A private company shouldn’t be looking to gain power this way.”

Apple’s vice president of Apple Pay Jennifer Bailey recently said that Apple is “watching” cryptocurrency in regards to potentially supporting it in the future, but said that the company is primarily focused on what consumers are using today.

Cook’s comments come three months after Facebook announced plans to launch a new digital currency called Libra next year in partnership with companies like Visa, Mastercard, Paypal, and Stripe.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.



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