Employee blogs–how lawyers are forcing tightening of corporate policies

March 28, 2008

Cisco got in trouble over a blog by one of its employees–legal trouble of course. I agree with the Economist who consistently laughs at our litigious system and the high cost we all pay for the abuse of it. I say that without intending any comment on the merits of the case against the Cisco blogger.

Blogging by employees has become part and parcel of the business scene–and a tremendous impetus toward transparency. But, there are risks and dangers. And while Scoble and other leaders of corporate blogging argued for minimal guidance and control by corporate leaders, it seems our litigious society will not allow that to happen for long. I suspect this case and the thousands of others soon to follow will drastically change corporate blogging–much to the loss of all of us.

Our legal system, after all, completely discourages organizations from saying “they’re sorry” when they screwed up. I just heard from a friend about the sad story of his mother who fell off an x-ray table in a hospital as she was dying of cancer. A hospital staff person who turned his back on her and she fell off the X-ray table–seriously contributing to her decline and destroying what little quality of life she had left. Rather than saying “we’re sorry” and explaining in detail what happened which would have satisfied my friend, they instead refused to provide him any records or information about the incident, refused to accept responsibility and refused to discuss it with him. Just following legal advice, no doubt. But because of this excellent advice, he is now considering taking action–all avoidable by saying you’re sorry.

What this has to do with blogging, I’m not sure–oh yeah, stupid lawsuits.


4 Responses to “Employee blogs–how lawyers are forcing tightening of corporate policies”

  1. Larry Riendeau Says:

    All too sad but true, concerning corporate and legal strategy. But equally sad is the countless number of people opting to bring litigation despite having received a sincere apology. Our get rich quick mentality has long prevailed over character and moral values.

    We can only hope those impaneled to hear such cases at trial recognize the genuiness of those taking prompt responsibility.

  2. […] as something autonomous. This kind of approach to corporate blogging is by far in the minority. Read more Bookmark with: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover […]

  3. tammy comeaux Says:

    my 78 year old mom fell off the x-ray table on 7/10/09. she had fluid on her brain (hemocephalus). she hit her head, has 5 staples in it, has a concussion. the doctors nor my siblings knew about the hemocephalus. we found out about this after the fall. I am not a doctor but I would think this fall would be contributing negatively to her pre existing condition. we only had one genuinely offered apology given by a nurse on 7/13/09. my sister was trying to insist in going into the xray room with my mom to assist. had they allowed her this wouldn’t have happened. there will be legal action on our part also

  4. Mr Cox Says:

    Ah, thanks! This settled up some contradictions I’ve heard.

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