I was fired yesterday

They did an “investigation” starting with my web site Boomershoot.org, then this blog and other web sites of mine, asked me a few questions along the way, suspended me without pay effective May 30th, then announced the results of their “investigation” yesterday–”You are being terminated.”  When I asked for the details of what I did wrong or an opportunity to dispute the findings of their “investigation“ I was told, “That discussion wouldn’t be productive.“

I turned down a job in Moscow just two weeks ago and now they have hired someone else.

Most annoying.


16 thoughts on “I was fired yesterday

  1. Sorry to hear that Joe. Good luck in finding something closer to home — maybe a weekly Boomershoot .


  2. Dooced. Bummer.

    So, are you taking a much needed vacation before starting your own company with Ry, or are you already shopping your talents around to all the usual suspects?

  3. Usual suspects. Ry is working at MS right now and we don’t have the resources to start something of our own right now even if we had a great idea all ready to go.

  4. What was the exact reason for your dismissal? The fact that they disagree with your political views is not a valid reason for termination. I’d argue your civil rights have been violated and find an attorney. Some people claim that you are “employed at will” and can be dismissed at any time for any reason. But, this is not true. For instance, they can’t fire you because you’re black, too old, or gay. So, they do sort of have to have a valid reason to fire you. If they fire you due to the conservative content of your web sites, then a case could be made that this is in violation of your first amendment rights.

  5. I suspect that “they” figured you were skirting pretty close to your non-disclosure agreements, with some of the security/cryptography things you’ve posted. But who can tell – that might just be the official reason if it ever comes up.

    Hope you find something else that challenging, fun, and closer to home.

  6. The “exact reason” was refused. I was given “.. inappropriate and unauthorized use of PNNL computing resources, failure to comply with standards outlined in the Business Ethics and Staff Conduct subject area, unauthorized disclosure of or use of information that is proprietary or confidential to Battelle and it’s clients, and dishonesty.”

    No specifics and no opportunity to refute any of the charges–which is what annoys me.

  7. Sorry about the Job… It sucks that your personal life effected your work relationship. I really don’t see where dishonesty would come into play after having met you.

    You never know something else that is better may come along.


  8. I would run it by a labor attorney anyways, unless you were given a really good severance. At-Will states have one set of rules — but groups that get a “.gov” on thier sites have a whole different set of much stricter rules to follow, especially since they do have to keep up with that pesky First Amendment.

  9. No severance at all. Thanks for the suggestion. I’ll think about it.

  10. The first amendment does NOT apply to private individuals who wish to supress your speech. It ONLY applies to the government.

    Thus, a government employee can sue and win, while an employee of a private company cannot.

    Been there, done that, with my employers and blogs.

    Move on, you will be glad you did.

  11. I worked for a national laboratory under contract to the Department of Energy. My email address domain was pnl.gov. All of the work I did was for the government. Does that make the First Amendment applicable? I don’t know.

  12. I deleted your comment. Please contact me and I’ll explain why.

  13. G’dammit Joe, that bites! Get a tipjar up, soonest.

    I’ve followed you since last year’s Boomershoot, and am looking forward to attending next year’s event.

    Several commenters here have mentioned finding a good labor law attorney. Do it. I’ve gone to countless labor law seminars as an (former) employer. It’s amazing, just how many ways an employer can really foul their own nest with improper terminations, and they may very well have done so here.

    Meanwhile, best wishes and good luck to you.



    Sloop New Dawn

    Galveston, TX

  14. If you were using a company PC or network they could justify termination for persoanl use of company resources. Just as my company could fire me for writing this now.

    But if they do, they must be consistant and fire everyone that engages in activity similar to what they calim they fired you for.

    This is one reason I have all but abandoned my web site, I do not have time outside work to keep it up, and did not want to push the envelope by trying to keep maintain it dring lunch time.


    If you get a job fast, chalk it up to tuition and move on. If not, look for an attorney and get some advice.


  15. Sorry to hear that. I would like to second the advice about contacting a lawyer. You don’t always need to win in court to get satisfaction. With an attorney’s help you and your former employer may be able to come to a compromise.

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