Following Mike Stopforth’s post on the 20th about the mudslinging between Mike Arrington and Sam Sethi, another equally nasty public spat has emerged between Rocketboom shareholders and ex-business partners Amanda Congdon and Andrew Baron.
See my previous post for more about Rocketboom and Amanda’s path to stardom.
As we all know the internet forgets nothing, Google knows everything – and emails that should be kept private (internal) will undoubtedly be posted somewhere public. So when Valleywag (Silicon Valley’s Gossip Blog) posted this article with a detailed chain of emails – this little issue became a very public one. The funny thing is that emails were originally posted by Andrew and Amanda themselves! on Yahoo’s Tech Forum.
When it gets personal and public, many people start losing respect of both parties – here are some of the comments from the Yahoo VideoBlogging Thread.
‘Guys, this isn’t helping either of you. My strong advice as a businesswoman and (I hope) friend is DO NOT discuss this stuff here OR on your blogs. If I were a…’ – Dierdre Straughton
‘Andrew and Amada [sic], I admire your work both when you were working together, and now independently of one another. I am embarrassed for the two of you with your…’ – Digital Buddha
There are some other famous emails that should really have stayed within the company but have been made public – however, they make great reading, offer great insights and that we can often learn from them:
- Ray Ozzie & Bill Gate’s emails about the disruption of the Internet & the threat from Google. See the overview at Dave Winer’s Hypercamp.
- Brad Garlinghouse’s Peanut Butter email from inside Yahoo
- The thousands of internal emails that get posted on Fucked Company
Some things are better dealt with in person or on the phone. If that isn’t going to happen – make sure that whatever you say in an email or online will not come back to haunt you like it has for Amanda & Andrew, and Mike & Sam. For companies – be aware that some emails will go public.
For all of these people and companies – this is publicity. How bad can it really be?
For a new take on Winston Churchill’s “We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.”
“I will defend my name, I will fight in the blogosphere, I will fight in the podosphere, I will fight in Outlook, Thunderbird and GMail, I will fight in Digg & Technorati & del.icio.us; I will never surrender.”
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