Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

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Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby D-Day » Mon Apr 07, 2014 10:11 am

http://news.yahoo.com/mozilla-ceos-exit ... ector.html

Mozilla CEO's exit tests Silicon Valley's tolerance

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Tech workers in Silicon Valley debated on Friday whether Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich got the comeuppance he deserved or was himself a victim of intolerance when he resigned under pressure this week amid outrage over his opposition to same-sex marriage.

Some, especially a dating website that had urged its users to boycott Mozilla's popular Firefox web browser, cheered Eich's resignation after less than two weeks as CEO of the nonprofit software company. Others viewed him as a victim and called his critics intolerant of people with different views.

Mozilla co-founder Eich, who invented the programming language Javascript, donated $1,000 in 2008 to support Proposition 8, which sought to ban same-sex marriage in California. Voters approved the measure, but it was struck down last June by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Eich did not respond to requests for comment on Friday, but he had posted an apology on his blog before he resigned for the pain his stance had caused. His views about gay marriage had been known within Mozilla for nearly two years, but controversy erupted after he was appointed CEO in late March.

Rarebit founders Hampton and Michael Catlin, a gay developer couple, pulled their software apps from Mozilla after Eich's appointment. OkCupid.com, the online dating site, called for a boycott of Firefox. Some on Twitter who identified themselves as Mozilla employees called for Eich to resign.

On Friday, news of Eich's departure prompted a backlash on Twitter. Many suggested Silicon Valley was intolerant of people with views outside northern California's liberal mainstream.

Even Rarebit's Hampton Catlin said he had not anticipated the issue's escalation and was saddened by Eich's resignation.

"We absolutely believe people should be allowed to have personal opinions, but we also believe that we are allowed to disagree and to try and change someone's mind by expressing our own personal story," the Catlins said in a statement.

"We absolutely don't believe that everyone who voted yes on Prop 8 is evil. In fact, we're sure that most of them just didn't understand the impact the law would have."

They said many backers changed their mind due to "the impact and pain that the law caused to friends and family members."

When Eich made his $1,000 donation in opposition to same-sex marriage, the political landscape for gay rights was different than it is today. Even presidential candidate Barack Obama and his Democratic primary rival Hillary Clinton were five years away from embracing legalization of same-sex marriage.

At the end of 2008, same-sex marriages were legal in only Massachusetts and Connecticut. Today 17 states, including California, allow such marriages.

AN APOLOGY

Before his resignation, Eich posted an apology on his blog for the "pain" he said his views had caused. He vowed to uphold a culture of equality as Mozilla's CEO, including maintaining the nonprofit's health benefits for same-sex couples.

In the Thursday post that announced his exit, Eich said he was taking a rest to spend more time with his family and would continue to work on browser software issues.

Some cheered his resignation, including OkCupid.

"We are pleased that OkCupid's boycott has brought tremendous awareness to the critical matter of equal rights for all partnerships," the company said on its main Twitter feed.

Silicon Valley's denizens pride themselves on being part of a meritocratic community that welcomes talented workers regardless of their origins or political and religious beliefs.

But analysts said the Eich episode showed there are limits to that tolerance.

Gay rights are widely embraced in the San Francisco area, long known for its thriving lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Silicon Valley's tech culture reflects that sensitivity, and its companies rely on their CEOs to set that kind of tone, analysts said.

"We in Silicon Valley have a certain degree of hero worship," said Jane English-Lueck, an anthropologist at San Jose State University who has studied the industry's culture.

"The CEO has a lot of iconic visibility, and what a business leader is saying is going to have meaning to people about that company."

Eich's departure is a reminder that high-profile corporate executives can be taken to task for unpopular personal views, said Bruce Barry, professor of management and sociology at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee.

"This might make other executives understand that you are potentially accountable for your private views," Barry said. "The fear of getting in trouble or not advancing causes people to self-censor. But that's what rank-and-file employees have always known."

Mozilla has apologized for not addressing the controversy quickly enough and said it was wrestling with the conflict between "equality and freedom of speech."

"Equality is necessary for meaningful speech," company chairwoman Mitchell Baker said in a blog post announcing Eich's resignation on Thursday. "And you need free speech to fight for equality. Figuring out how to stand for both at the same time can be hard."

(Additional reporting and writing by Edwin Chan; Editing by David Lindsey and David Gregorio)


Starting another thread. This needn't be in the Sports forum

Intolerance of the "tolerant", or deserved?

My take: Eich gave to the pro-Prop 8 people back in '08 and, at no point that I have read about, did he ever try to foist his personal views while he was an executive or CEO at Mozilla, so I can't see where this is justified. But my take goes a little further than this. Look past the whole gay thing to a bigger issue.

So I'll just go ahead and put my Gannon autographed tin foil hat on.......Dammit, why doesn't this thing fit anymore??............

The IRS, in its own scandal about harassing the "Tea Party", has been accused of going after donor lists of targeted organizations. This is how OKCupid got Eich's name. Because California law requires that if you donate more than $100 to a political cause, this is public information. If an online dating website can force the CEO of Mozilla to resign because of his personal beliefs, is this the type of information that we as a country want the IRS to have access to? I would say not no, but fuck no. But that's just me and how I roll......

I also take away from this that, based upon Eich's and Mozilla's handling of the whole thing, even after the "social acceptance of 'nerds'", they can still be easily bullied. Just like in high school. The more things change, the more they stay the same. This is too bad, because this would have been the point to make a stand in defense of one person's right to have an opinion. Definitely a touchy issue.

Before I get bashed for being "anti-gay" or "anti-gay marriage", I am not against either. Who you marry, or who you doink is your business. I am against the government being in the business of sanctioning marriage and then extending benefits based on it. Marriage is between two committed people and the government has no business sanctioning it. Period.
Last edited by D-Day on Mon Apr 07, 2014 12:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby The Suburban Avenger » Mon Apr 07, 2014 10:48 am

My take: Eich gave to the pro-Prop 8 people back in '08 and, at no point that I have read about, did he ever try to foist his personal views while he was an executive or CEO at Mozilla, so I can't see where this is justified.


Considering our Supreme Court can't seem to figure out that money isn't speech, as long as it is, your advocacy of a cause or group with your money can brand you as holding the values of that cause or group ... like it or not.
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby D-Day » Mon Apr 07, 2014 10:59 am

The Suburban Avenger wrote:
My take: Eich gave to the pro-Prop 8 people back in '08 and, at no point that I have read about, did he ever try to foist his personal views while he was an executive or CEO at Mozilla, so I can't see where this is justified.


Considering our Supreme Court can't seem to figure out that money isn't speech, as long as it is, your advocacy of a cause or group with your money can brand you as holding the values of that cause or group ... like it or not.


I see your point, and that kinda gets into the touchiness of this whole thing. Where should the line be drawn on free speech and putting your money where your mouth is? These disclosure laws serve a purpose. Can you imagine the corruption were they not in place? In this case, though, I'm not sure that purpose was served
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby Heywood McCrakin » Mon Apr 07, 2014 11:13 am

i couldn't agree more...

i may even add a "plus one" or just a regular "+1"
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby frank - up in grand blanc » Mon Apr 07, 2014 11:33 am

At some point over the weekend I heard a radio piece on this -BBC?- and when a spokesman for the "throw the bum out" POV was asked about the appropriateness of respecting differences of opinion the reply was "there should be no tolerance of intolerance." That's a snappy little manifesto, but it's also frightening because it leaves open the matter of what is and what isn't "tolerance." I mean there are zero objective reasons for not embracing gay marriage? If that's the viewpoint here then what about the matter of illegal immigrants? And laugh now, but what happens if popular sentiment shifts and life IS defined as beginning at conception or some other point pre-birth? My point is that in a liberal society framed by law and due process NOTHING should be sacrosanct or beyond debate. Justice and truth should always prevail (quickly, I hope) but there is a ton of difference between arriving at the same outcome via free expression & public debate and, alternatively, tyranny.
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby D-Day » Mon Apr 07, 2014 11:38 am

Well stated, Frank.......

I don't often agree with Andrew Sullivan, but in this case, dude is spot the fuck on
http://dish.andrewsullivan.com/2014/04/06/the-quality-of-mercy/
Last edited by D-Day on Mon Apr 07, 2014 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby Sterile Whites 48313 » Mon Apr 07, 2014 11:47 am

frank - up in grand blanc wrote: And laugh now, but what happens if popular sentiment shifts and life IS defined as beginning at conception or some other point pre-birth?


I can almost picture the "Masturbation is Murder" crowd.
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby middle aged female » Mon Apr 07, 2014 11:58 am

Sterile Whites 48313 wrote:
frank - up in grand blanc wrote: And laugh now, but what happens if popular sentiment shifts and life IS defined as beginning at conception or some other point pre-birth?


I can almost picture the "Masturbation is Murder" crowd.

I think it does say something in the Bible about "spilling your seed" on the ground.
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby Mulligan » Mon Apr 07, 2014 12:09 pm

Eich shouldn't have been named CEO, a position he held for only 10 days. His personal views were irrelevant as the chief technology officer, but the CEO is different. He is the face of the company.

Mozilla has to compete with other tech companies for talent, and having a boss with those views in that position in that industry is untenable. Three board members resigned because of his appointment and employees were in revolt.

FYI, OKCupid is not a gay dating site. And it didn't force Eich to resign. Freeedom of speech (his donation) does not mean freedom from consequences of that speech.
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby Doctor Detroit » Mon Apr 07, 2014 12:26 pm

Mulligan wrote:Freeedom of speech (his donation) does not mean freedom from consequences of that speech.


I don't know why people seem to have such a difficult time grasping this concept. The government didn't force him to resign his job. A court didn't force him to resign his job. It has nothing to do with freedom of speech. He's not in jail or fined. He can give money to whatever cause he feels like, but that doesn't mean others can't vote with their wallets in protest when he becomes CEO of a major company.
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby Amadeus » Mon Apr 07, 2014 12:44 pm

The situation goes beyond forcing one guy to quit. A friend of mine works for Mozilla, and here's her take on the situation:

"It is a stressful, scary thing to work at Mozilla right now. Each day brings things like death threats, many dozens of... creatively phrased and frightening voicemails and calls to the poor receptionist (who is on the front line), people running into the office screaming (I am oh, so "fortunate" to sit on the ground level near the front door), people yelling at and following me when I leave the office. It does not seem to matter that some of the randomly threatened employees may be LGBT, nor that I donated more than 30x more against Prop 8 than our now former CEO did in favor of it. But... I should no longer be surprised that facts and nuance don't matter. It feels so Orwellian: Violence is tolerance!"
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby D-Day » Mon Apr 07, 2014 12:49 pm

Mulligan wrote:Three board members resigned because of his appointment and employees were in revolt.


http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2014/03/28/three-mozilla-board-members-resign-over-choice-of-new-ceo/
The three board members who resigned sought a CEO from outside Mozilla with experience in the mobile industry who could help expand the organization’s Firefox OS mobile-operating system and balance the skills of co-founders Eich and Baker, the people familiar with the situation said. They did not want to be identified because they are not authorized to speak publicly about the matter.

A.) This may be an excuse "for public consumption", but if it is, then it only speaks to how disingenuous these resignations were. But then, again, it may be the truth.
B.) If a person's $1K donation six years ago to a cause that some in the organization deem unacceptable makes them to be unfit for leadership then that kind of winnows the field down doesn't it? That's just dumb.

From the same WSJ entry
“I do not support the Board’s appointment of @BrendanEich as CEO,” Kat Braybrooke, a curation and co-design lead at the organization, wrote on Twitter on Thursday

I worked at a company here where someone was badmouthing leadership in the can and was fired the next day. Security met dude at the door. I may be totally old school in my belief, here, but Kat Braybrooke, curation and co-design lead, needs to just shut her hole and curate and co-design with the team she leads. Leadership doesn't give a rat's ass what you think and as long they're bringing in the bacon in to keep your job secure, their personal beliefs shouldn't matter to you.

FYI, OKCupid is not a gay dating site.

Ok, so I'll be the first to admit that I may have been mistaken in this. I'm happily married and don't need these types of sites unless the MT doesn't stop running around the house singing Basketball Jones. I have edited the above post to reflect this. Still doesn't change the point, though
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby frank - up in grand blanc » Mon Apr 07, 2014 12:50 pm

Mulligan wrote:Eich shouldn't have been named CEO, a position he held for only 10 days. His personal views were irrelevant as the chief technology officer, but the CEO is different. He is the face of the company.

Mozilla has to compete with other tech companies for talent, and having a boss with those views in that position in that industry is untenable. Three board members resigned because of his appointment and employees were in revolt.

FYI, OKCupid is not a gay dating site. And it didn't force Eich to resign. Freeedom of speech (his donation) does not mean freedom from consequences of that speech.


I agree. For the same reason that I should be free to be chauvanistic about the country of origin of my manufactured goods (yes, shades of Buy American here) these other guys should free to be selective about what they spend and where they spend it. And telling everyone is also fine by me.

The problem with booting a candidate for consideration from a leadership position is that doing so trods close to what I described above: a new variety of tyranny. I'm not naieve about how the world works, but isn't it shitty that private life can torpedo a career? I think so, and it brings to mind a former client who was a good guy, well-liked by agency & client-colleagues alike, but he had a secret: gay. The guy had a steady guy and the news was pretty much tamped down, so I was told, because of possible implications for his career which, btw, included his being the public face for a small but important part of his employers business. The rest of the secret was that this guy would use the agency to troll for young guys to invite to his parties which raises questions of the propriety of chasing booty at work and among those in positions of subservience. Not a purely clean guy is my point, but at work he was awesome, so do we beat his ass for maybe cowing young gay guys into putting out just as Eich has been beaten?
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby frank - up in grand blanc » Mon Apr 07, 2014 1:00 pm

Addendum: not a Con Law scholar here, or even a Con Law enthusiast, but by using history as a guide I predict that eventually the courts will mandate no restrictions to gay marriage. IMO there are legitimate issues that need to be settled, but I cannot see how the Constitution as it stands today can be used in perpetuity to deny the right. Something somewhere in there about equal protection is the trump card.
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Re: Hot Fudge You're Fired/I Quit - Non-Sports Edition

Postby thunderstruck » Mon Apr 07, 2014 2:28 pm

Doctor Detroit wrote:
Mulligan wrote:Freeedom of speech (his donation) does not mean freedom from consequences of that speech.


I don't know why people seem to have such a difficult time grasping this concept. The government didn't force him to resign his job. A court didn't force him to resign his job. It has nothing to do with freedom of speech. He's not in jail or fined. He can give money to whatever cause he feels like, but that doesn't mean others can't vote with their wallets in protest when he becomes CEO of a major company.

True. And that's fine by me. But I doubt the "tolerant" side in this would be all that sanguine about a different version of this when they're on the receiving end of some moral outrage. For example, it would be legal for a CEO to review the political contribution databases and fire any employees who donated to pro-gay-marriage groups. Or even just fire all the Democrat contributors. Or anyone who's social media channels were open enough to ascertain that their politics were opposite the preferred version.

Sure, there's an argument to be made that the leader is more visible so he can be forced out while underlings get the freedom to act on political issues with impunity. But if someone can be ostracized and forced out of a company for holding the same view in 2008 as Barak Obama, Bill and Hilary Clinton did, and that roughly half the country still holds, then maybe the gloves are off in the culture war and losing a job or a customer because your politics are different is just the price you'll have to pay for choosing to take a small stand. Everyone OK with that?
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