As would become his standard practice,
Jobs offered to provide "exclusive" interviews to anointed publications in return for their promising to put the story on the cover.
This time he went one "exclusive" too far, though it didn't really hurt.
He agreed to a request from Business Week's Katie Hafner for exclusive access to him before the launch,
but he also made a similar deal with Newsweek and then with Fortune.
What he didn't consider was that one of Fortune's top editors, Susan Fraker,
was married to Newsweek's editor Maynard Parker.
At the Fortune story conference, when they were talking excitedly about their exclusive,
Fraker mentioned that she happened to know that Newsweek had also been promised an exclusive,
and it would be coming out a few days before Fortune.
So Jobs ended up that week on only two magazine covers.
Newsweek used the cover line "Mr. Chips" and showed him leaning on a beautiful NeXT,
which it proclaimed to be "the most exciting machine in years."
Business Week showed him looking angelic in a dark suit, fingertips pressed together like a preacher or professor.
But Hafner pointedly reported on the manipulation that surrounded her exclusive.
"NeXT carefully parceled out interviews with its staff and suppliers, monitoring them with a censor's eye," she wrote.
"That strategy worked, but at a price:
Such maneuvering—self-serving and relentless—displayed the side of Steve Jobs that so hurt him at Apple.
The trait that most stands out is Jobs's need to control events."