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The Secret History of This Chocolate Chip Cookie

David Gallagher

"Sent from my iPhone (actually Steve's)"

Image: David Gallagher

I posted a photo of a cookie on the Internet. And it was thrilling.

I was working at The New York Times in January 2007 when Steve Jobs came by to demo the just-announced iPhone. A few phones were passed around the long table of writers and editors. I took a picture of what was in front of me, just to try out the camera, and then quickly emailed the photo to myself.

I knew that the photo was contraband, given Apple's obsession with leaks. Which of course meant that I absolutely had to do something with it. So afterwards, I posted it on Flickr. I wasn't brave enough to tag it or anything (I added a caption much later). So as far as I know, nobody noticed. But it was still quietly satisfying: I had posted what was most likely the first iPhone photo on the internet by anyone outside of the company. Take that, Apple.

Ten years later there are 3.3 billion iPhone photos and videos on Flickr, and billions more elsewhere. I'm still fond of that cookie.

Editor's note: Motherboard was able to find one photo published on the internet prior to Gallagher's that appears to be a demo of the iPhone's camera published by Apple (it is unclear if this photo is showing off the iPhone's screen or its camera). If you know of any other early iPhone photos please email me: jason.koebler@vice.com.

David Gallagher was the Deputy Technology Editor at the New York Times between April 2006 and January 2013. He is now Kickstarter's director of communications.

Motherboard staff is exploring the cultural, political, and social influence of the iPhone for the 10th anniversary of its release. Follow along.