What happens when heartfelt tributes to the late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs get turned into commercial schmaltz? You get an Asian eyeglass distributor using the death of Steve Jobs to promote its products. At a Hong Kong trade show, a distributor announced Jobs left “his overwhelming ideas and his favorite glasses.”
Whether prowling a stage or gracing the cover of the recent biography by Walter Isaacson, the $450, German Lunor Classic Rund PP eyeglasses were a Jobs favorite. Make that “The Glasses of Steve Jobs,” as the company now markets them. “Many, many clients and customers” began asking for the same lenses soon after his death, Garick Tsui, marketing executive with the Power Bloom, the Asian distributor, told the Wall Street Journal.
Despite an estimate of “hundreds” of requests for the eyeglasses, isn’t it a little creepy to sell a product made prominent by the death of a person? No, according to the company. “People see these as a tribute to Mr. Jobs,” Tsui said.
But what’s next in the commercialization of a man so well-known for a minimalist life? Will we see black turtlenecks? Perhaps hawk some Steve Jobs blue jeans as a tribute? Yes, Jobs was an innovator and had qualities that could be admired, but it doesn’t follow that he becomes a marketable brand.