Steve Jobs’ 1973 Job Application Hits NFT Market in Auction Pitting Digital Against Physical

The format of the auction of the famous Steve Jobs document was designed to test the idea that value has shifted away from physical to digital.


Image via Getty/Justin Sullivan


A 1973 job application from the late Steve Jobs is hitting auction again, this time in a value-testing showdown of sorts between physical and digital.

Billed as a “world first,” the format of the auction sees the digital version of the application “in direct competition with” the original physical item, a move organizers argue could be an industry-shifting precedent for the NFT market. The side-by-side auction, featuring an NFT created in partnership with Rarible, will be live for seven days starting July 21. The sale of the physical item (the listing for which states that it has been independently verified) is being hosted by Snoofa, an auction software company that enables users to run timed online auctions.

The NFT will be available for purchase using Ethereum (ETH), while the physical item will be available to buy with U.S. dollars and crypto. The auction format, according to a press release, is designed to highlight the “modern shift in perceived value” in light of the NFT boom.


“Testing this with a piece of history from arguably the most influential tech entrepreneur of our time, is very special,” Olly Joshi, an entrepreneur and founder of the NFT vs. physical auction format, said this week. “Will this open a whole new market for decentralized collectibles, or will we see a world in which both can coexist? As Steve Jobs asked us many times, is it time to ‘think different’? Whatever the answer, the digital and art worlds will be watching with anticipation. We believe this will be a massive proof point for NFTs and their role in culture.”

The application itself stems from roughly a year before Jobs became a part of the Atari team as a technician. In the application, Jobs points to a number of unique qualifications that would later prove to be defining aspects of the Apple brand.

Previously, the application made headlines in connection with its prior auction sales, including earlier this year in London for a reported $224,750.

A percentage of the final profits from the newly announced auction will be given to Cancer Research Institute and One Laptop Per Child. For more information, including the option to participate in a poll on the physical vs. digital debate that’s at the center of the auction, click here.

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