About two weeks ago, I spent some time being interviewed by Amy Joyce of the Washington Post about my expulsion from the Microsoft campus for an article she was working on about the potential pitfalls of blogging about one’s job. The article went live today: Free Expression Can Be Costly When Bloggers Bad-Mouth Jobs. Here’s the section where I’m quoted:
Michael Hanscom started his blog, Eclecticism, before 2000, as a way to keep in touch with family and collect things he found on the Internet. A fan of Apple computers, he found himself working at a temporary job with Xerox on the Microsoft campus in Redmond, Wash.
Hanscom said his family teased him that he would burst into flames when he walked onto the Microsoft campus. So one day, when he noticed a pallet of Macs — the same version he just bought for himself — ready to be delivered to Microsoft, he took a picture and posted it. “It struck my sense of humor,” he said.
A few days after Hanscom posted the picture, he said, his Xerox manager called him into an office. The manager had Hanscom’s blog up, and asked if the picture was his. Hanscom said it was, but said it was posted on his own time, on his own computer. According to Hanscom, the manager then said because it was posted on his own space and time, the company couldn’t ask him to take it down, but he could never come to the Microsoft campus again.
“It makes sense, really,” Hanscom said. “I’ve tried since then to look at it from their point of view. I never gave away any secrets, but I was in a position where I saw a lot.”
Quite a few other webloggers were quoted, too. Looks like my fifteen minutes isn’t quite over with yet! :)
(If anyone happens to be finding my site on a Google search after reading the WaPo article, my 15 Minutes category has all the gory details.)