Yesterday morning, Apple CEO Tim Cook reportedly sent out an email to all Apple employees citing the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine and pledging his support in the form of matching donations at a 2:1 ratio and strict restrictions for the availability of Apple products in the Moscow-led country.
Check out the full letter courtesy of The Verge, below:
I wanted to take a moment to address the ongoing crisis in Ukraine.
I know I speak for everyone at Apple in expressing our concern for all of those affected by the violence. With each new image of families fleeing their homes and brave citizens fighting for their lives, we see how important it is for people around the world to come together to advance the cause of peace.
Apple is donating to humanitarian relief efforts and providing aid for the unfolding refugee crisis. We are also working with partners to assess what more we can do. I know that many of you are eager to find ways to support as well, and we want to help amplify the impact of your donations. Starting today, Apple will match your donations at a rate of 2:1 for eligible organizations, and we will make this retroactive for donations to those organizations since February 25. Please visit the Employee Giving Portal to learn more.
We are working to support our teams in Ukraine and across the region. In Ukraine, we have been in contact with every employee, assisting them and their families in any way we can. For our Ukrainian team members located outside of the country that may need support, please contact [email redacted]. And for any employee who needs any support, please visit the People site for available resources.
As a company, we are taking additional actions as well. We have paused all product sales in Russia. Last week, we stopped all exports into our sales channel in the country. Apple Pay and other services have been limited. RT News and Sputnik News are no longer available for download from the App Store outside Russia. And we have disabled both traffic and live incidents in Apple Maps in Ukraine as a safety and precautionary measure for Ukrainian citizens.
We will continue to evaluate the situation and are in communication with relevant governments on the actions we are taking.
This moment calls for unity, it calls for courage, and it reminds us that we must never lose sight of the humanity we all share. In these difficult times, I take comfort in knowing that we are united in our commitment to each other, to our users, and to being a force for good in the world.
For those unaware, heading to the Russian Apple website shows that all items, including iPhones, iPads, Macs, Apple Watches, AirPods and accessories are “в настоящее время недоступно,” which translates to “currently unavailable.”
In addition to its products, Apple has removed Russian state-led news outlets RT News and Sputnik News from the App Store globally, except for those accessing the store in Russia. RT News is the same news outlet that has been blocked from earning ad revenue on YouTube and removed from Canadian provider Bell, Rogers, Telus, Shaw, Access Communications and VMedia’s respective channel lineups.
Further, similar to how Google has disabled live traffic data from Google Maps in Ukraine in a bid to safeguard the local population’s locations, Apple has disabled traffic as well as live incidents in Apple Maps in Ukraine.
The stricter restrictions come after several big tech companies, including Facebook and TikTok started taking down Russian state media in Europe and Reddit shadowbanned the subreddit r/Russia for spreading misinformation and war propaganda.
Today marks the seventh day since Russia illegally invaded Ukraine.
In other Apple-related news, the Cupertino, California-based company officially announced its March 8th ‘Peek Performance’ event earlier today.
Via: The Verge