[Foundation-l] Foundation Discretion Regarding Personnel

Mike Godwin mnemonic at gmail.com
Sat Dec 15 14:09:24 UTC 2007

Thomas Dalton writes:

> They must have given you a general idea of the story when they were
> interviewing Mike. You can't ask "Were you aware of Mrs. Doran's
> criminal record?" without revealing the fact that she has a criminal
> record...

Without revealing an *allegation* that is unsubstantiated by anything  
other than a Register reporter's willingness to make it over the  
phone. If you're saying the Register is a reliable source, all of a  
sudden, you hold it in much higher opinion than I do.

> As soon as Mike was asked that question the foundation
> should have done their own investigation and then broken the story. It
> would have taken a couple of hours to get enough information together
> to spoil The Register's scoop.

Criminal background checks take at least a day, and possibly a few  
days, to do properly, at least in the United States.  The allegations  
made in the Register story would have taken significant time for us to  
confirm or refute.  (I assume, without knowing more, that most of this  
stuff was simply handed to Cade Metz by someone else who spent  
significant time trying to put a scandal together.) Plus, I don't  
think we should be in the business of trying to beat the Register in  
publishing a thinly sourced, largely unsubstantiated story.  And,  
finally, it bears repeating that we have legal considerations that  
prevent us from discussing most personnel matters, much less  
publishing stories about them.

>  If it's common practice to make agreements which don't benefit you in
> any way, then it's not me that is seriously deficient...

Confidentiality agreements at the end of a term of employment  
generally benefit both parties (that's what makes them contractually  
binding), and are quite commonplace.

> I've been paying attention, and I've not seen any reason given for
> signing an NDA that forbids you from revealing that your former COO
> was a convicted felon.

You are mischaracterizing the nature of the agreement here.  You're  
also, I think, assuming we had a lot of advance knowledge that we did  
not in fact have -- not even after talking with the Register.


More information about the foundation-l mailing list