The Apple boss has appeared at the San Francisco Gay Pride celebrations with 5,000 employees.
Tim Cook has made a public appearance at San Francisco's Gay Pride festival, supporting the 5,000 Apple employees who showed up for the event. The Apple CEO posed with and greeted revellers at the event just two days after he was accidentally outed on live television.
Cook has never publically confirmed or denied that he is gay but during a CNBC's Squawk on the Street segment about the lack of openly gay CEOs, co-host Simon Hobbs said "Tim Cook is fairly open about the fact he's gay."
As the other panellists shook their heads and looked awkward, New York Times columnist Jim Stewart tried to do some damage control, saying that Cook was not openly gay and it was not something he'd like to comment on.
Neither Apple nor Tim Cook commented on the incident but the CEO's appearance at the Gay Pride event could signal that he was not offended by Hobbs' remark. Regardless, the businessman has been an advocate for the Employment Nondiscrimination Act, which would make it illegal for employers to fire staff based on their sexual orientation, and referred to his own experience of discrimination in a speech he gave last year.
"Since these early days, I have seen and have experienced many types of discrimination and all of them were rooted in the fear of people that were different than the majority," he said, via Mail Online. After Sunday's Gay Pride event, Cook tweeted "Congrats to 5000 Apple employees/families who attended today's Pride parade. Inclusion inspires innovation."
Special Apple/Pride T-shirts featuring the apple logo twinned with a rainbow design were created for the event and were seen being sported by Cook and his thousands of employees present. The company also handed out iTunes Pride gift cards which commemorated the occasion and offered "1 free song" download to its recipient.