Forbes.com: Ten Must-Read Tech Stories.
Wow, I'm honored to be #6.
Speaking of comments, Thomas Hawk is having a discussion about HP's comment policy. By the way, over on Channel 9, the policy is stricter than here. Over there we will remove hateful speech. Remove pornographic or potentially offensive speech or imagery. I think that's responsible too. This is my personal blog so things can be a bit looser than on a corporate forum. What do you think?
Someone claimed I deleted some comments. I did not. I don't delete comments. Even very distasteful ones. Even ones who call me an idiot. Even ones that say discriminatory things.
Why not? Because I believe strongly in freedom of speech. Even speech I might hate. It takes a thick skin. Yes, I have provided a soap box for people to say some distasteful things. Yes, most corporate types don't agree that I should give people such a soap box (I know most other corporate webloggers delete comments).
But, I think it's important to hear from everyone, not just those I like.
That said, if some comments got deleted, please let me know. It's possible my anti-comment-spam technology is being a bit too strong.
I'm going to switch this weekend to a new comment server, though, which will be faster and easier for me to maintain. I'm getting hit by a ton of comment spam.
Is there ever a time I would delete comments? Yes, if something illegal was being done. How about pornographic/offensive material? I wouldn't delete it. If you're sensitive to such things, just don't read comments. How about racist or discriminatory postings? I won't delete it. There's some such statements in my comments tonight.
This is a true marketplace of ideas and there are some ideas here that are the metaphorical equivilent of rotting mushrooms. Be careful out there.
Note to Ed Kaim: I do NOT take credit for Microsoft's change in stance (he claimed I would). That credit belongs to The Stranger, Seattle's alternative weekly newspaper, which did the reporting on this issue, to Americablog, who first brought this to my attention.
I'm off to the airport. Be offline until tomorrow. Have a great Friday.
I also wanted to say thanks to Steve Ballmer. We're in the middle of an incredible corporate experiment with blogs. The fact that I can talk back to the CEO in a public space is just an incredible experiment and is causing people to talk about Microsoft in all sorts of corporate offices.
I believe that that's corporate leadership that's unprecidented in large corporations. Microsoft is really a special place to work and discuss ideas. Thanks for keeping my faith in Microsoft strong.
Steve Ballmer's email just came in: Microsoft's principles for public policy engagement.
Update: I've posted it over on Channel 9 so we can have a discussion about it there.
MAJOR NEWS. Steve Ballmer is sending email to all Microsoft employees explaining that Microsoft is reversing its position on the anti-discrimination bill.
I haven't gotten the email yet, but I already have permission to post it in public, and I hear that it'll be posted on Microsoft's PressPass site too.
We're also reaching out to the various blogs and news sites that were disappointed with how we handled this.
From my position, I'm elated.
I hope that this lets us all move forward and heal some pretty deep rifts that were exposed.
I received this news at shortly after 9 a.m. in a call with Frank Shaw, vice president of Waggener Edstrom (Microsoft's public relations firm).
I'll post as soon as I get the email. I'm sure this will be a major news story today. I'll be flying back to Seattle at 3 p.m.
Target report. Yesterday was an incredible day for me personally. There are so many fantastic people at Target I couldn't name them all. Having dinner with Paul Singer last night, senior vice president and CIO, was one of the highlights of my life. He's worked at Target for 21 years. We talked about a range of things from the Tablet PC I was carrying to his "Adopt" pin that he was wearing (he highly recommends adoption and is an evangelist for helping out kids who don't have parents).
The headquarters at Target just gets my creative juices going. It's a beautiful building and quite a few separate employees spoke in glowing terms about the art work and culture that's prevelent there. Yesterday they had cultural dances and hundreds of employees were enthusiastically watching that.
I don't want to share too much what was discussed in the meeting because that's a competitive advantage that Target will have and I don't want to mess that up.
If you think you (people who left comments on the treads, or wrote about Target yesterday) didn't have an impact, you did. They are looking at this new world and trying to learn from it, and watching their process as they do that makes me understand why Target has such a strong brand. When I say "they" by the way, I mean many of the most important leaders inside Target are reading the blogs this morning.
I'm sure that many people inside Target today are using RSS news aggregators and doing Pubsub/Technorati/Feedster searches for various things.
By the way, Anthony d. Weeks, the artist, is amazing. He put a mural-sized piece of paper along one wall and just started drawing with various colored pens during the meeting. He'd listen for key points, and draw a picture.
I wish I could show you some of his work. I'm trying to convince him to put some of his work on the Web (he's one of the only guys in the world who does this but doesn't even have a Web site).
One observation. Employees at Target dress to the nines! If Microsoft and Target employees ever got together for a party you'd be able to separate them out instantly. No jeans and t-shirts were seen at Target.
Another observation: far more diversity, both in gender and ethnicity, than I see in the tech industry. We have a LOT to learn from Target on that score.
One interesting thing that I didn't expect. I thought I'd be teaching Target about blogs, but I am just creatively buzzing right now -- they taught me so much about their world. It was a fantastic day. Thanks Carolyn, Laysha, Paul, Scott, Bobb, Ann, Diane, Lena, Brie, Kelly, Jenny, Thomas, Tim, and Jerry and Clift for making my day just incredible.