Apple CEO Tim Cook has brilliantly used iPhone 8 hype to promote same-sex marriage in Australia

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 09: Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, visits an Apple store where third grade children from PS 57 James Weldon Johnson Leadership Academy are learning how to code through Apple's "Hour of Code" workshop program on December 9, 2015 in New York City. Cook said he hoped that teaching coding to children would become standard in education throughout the United States. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Apple has announced its support for same-sex marriage in Australia ahead of today’s launch of the long-awaited iPhone 8 and iPhone X models.

Before Tim Cook – the first ever openly gay chief executive of a Fortune 500 company – announced the new Apple Store products, he signed off on a gloriously pro-LGBT statement.

In doing so, Cook used the hype that’s been building around the new phones for the greater good, to promote the ‘Yes’ side of Australia’s same-sex marriage vote, which begins today.

CUPERTINO, CA - OCTOBER 27: Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks on stage during an Apple product launch event on October 27, 2016 in Cupertino, California. Apple Inc. is expected to unveil the latest iterations of its MacBook line of laptops (Photo by Stephen Lam/Getty Images)


The statement reads: “We support marriage equality and believe all Australians deserve the freedom to marry the person they love, and to have their relationships recognised with the same dignity and legal protections as their neighbours, friends, and family.”

Campaigning ahead of the Australian postal vote has featured homophobic hate speech in the form of posters, TV adverts and ridiculous rhetoric.

This has led to draft legislation which means Australians could be fined up to $12,600 if they are found to be “vilifying” or “intimidating” someone because of their sexual orientation or religious convictions.

The postal survey had received criticism from LGBT+ activists because it’s being held by the Australian Bureau of Statistics – which is not subject to normal campaigning laws.

In recent months, Cook, who was considered for Hillary Clinton’s running mate, has also utilised his platform to come out against Donald Trump’s hateful policies and rhetoric.

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 14: (L to R) President-elect Donald Trump, Peter Thiel and Tim Cook, chief executive officer of Apple, Inc., listen during a meeting with technology executives at Trump Tower, December 14, 2016 in New York City. This is the first major meeting between President-elect Trump and technology industry leaders. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)


He has slammed Trump’s Muslim ban and the President’s proposed ban on transgender people serving in the military.

And Cook wrote a powerful letter rejecting the President’s response to a white nationalist rally in Virginia, which claimed the life of one woman.

Trump was widely condemned for equating the actions of neo Nazis and anti-fascist campaigners.

Cook has been a vocal supporter of LGBT rights since he came out in 2014, with the Human Rights Campaign honouring him for his work in 2015.

Last year he was joined by Pharrell Williams in an appearance on James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke, as they drove together to Apple’s latest launch event, which unveiled the iPhone 7.

WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 19:  Apple CEO Tim Cook listens to U.S. President Donald Trump deliver opening remarks during a meeting of the American Technology Council in the State Dining Room of the White House June 19, 2017 in Washington, DC. According to the White House, the council's goal is "to explore how to transform and modernize government information technology."  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)


However, earlier this year Apple provoked controversy by refusing to say how much it would donate from proceeds of its red iPhone 7 and 7 Plus to combat AIDS.

The company prominently marketed the products as “an unprecedented way to contribute to the Global Fund and bring the world a step closer to an AIDS-free generation”.

But it turned down multiple requests from PinkNews to explain how much of the profits would actually go to charity.