151

While I won't answer the original problem directly I wish to tackle something tangent to this. And I feel it is important enough to warrant an answer and not a comment. From a comment (and the post) it is established that GPL'ed code is modified and distributed, without distributing also the modifications: We are selling a product with a "custom linux ...


142

This situation is spiraling out of control out of anger and frustration. I can't speak to the legal aspect, but it should not have gotten to this stage. You basically gave him nothing in negotiation and then now that he wants to leave, you are acting to trap him in his current position. He is a wounded animal fighting back. The promotion (we'd consider ...


102

You don't know how your opinion will be portrayed. So, you are right so far, do not pass a direct judgement / opinion. Instead, stick to the facts, instead of talking about someone in particular (finger-pointing), talk about problems and possible ways of improvement. If you're asked whether you want her to be replaced, you can take the following approach to ...


78

I know you did not ask anything on behalf of yourself but humanitarian considerations compel me to strongly advise you to avoid hanging around anywhere near the ass end of your company because that is where it is about to be badly bitten. Your company has made some serious blunders. Not only have they irreparably mangled their relations with their ...


67

You mentioned that she performs well in sales and as the face of the company. At the same time she is not the right person (anymore!) for development. So the company has a high profile employee that currently has the wrong task for historical reasons but has important qualifications in another area. If she started to develop the product, I guess she is ...


44

Don’t retaliate against Francis. Talk to a lawyer. Your company has been breaking the law with regard to your violations of the GPL, and now one of your employees wants to become a whistleblower. You’re already going to be in enough legal problems from your violations of copyright law; the last thing you want is to get in even more trouble from breaking ...


32

Whenever you are denied compensation which you believe that you have earned, you need to consult a lawyer in your jurisdiction. Even though you did break a rule, and were terminated, that might not preclude you from your commissions. The story, as you said it, is very sketchy. The fact that your manager bought you the drinks, which got you fired ...


32

The question isn’t what the company should do, but what you should reply to a major investor. Not the same thing. So take my reply as “what you should say” not “what the company should do”. Of course she shouldn’t be fired. She is doing an excellent job in sales. But you don’t think she is quite the right person for her current position. She is not a very ...


20

This is not your decision. Do not threaten someone legally if you're not a lawyer. The only person making legal threats, implied or otherwise, should be your legal team. Also, this is not an HR decision. This is a strategic decision that has to be decided by upper management in conjunction with its legal team. As an HR person, your role is to make sure ...


12

And I am still wondering, should I contact my former CEO and tell him that this particular supervisor either sabotaged my job or did not have the mentality and intuition to validate my innovative ideas and enthusiasm? No, you shouldn't. There's nothing for you to gain by this line of action. Time to move on and put this unhappy job behind you.


11

A general rule to work by at this level is 'Pass information up, pass decisions down'. Give the investor your fair opinion of the CTO. Don't lead them into any decision you might want, or let them lead you into agreeing with their decision. Pass your information up, and let them pass a decision down - it's rarely correct to pass a decision up the ...


8

You have been thrown under the bus. You do not want to go back to people, of which you now know, throw other people under the bus. Instead, time to you brush up your resume and look for a new job. The CEO likely doesn't want to talk with you, he has someone for that: your former supervisor. It seems (and maybe is) unfair, but that is how these things work. ...


8

Is being singled out for termination, and losing commissions to the manager for drinking at lunch with the manager and co-workers ethical? It's probably not very nice and not very ethical, assuming you were intentionally singled out as you wrote. But if you are prohibited from drinking during work and you did it anyway, it's probably within their rights ...


4

I think really you need to talk to a lawyer. As far as negotiation goes, they have demonstrated willingness to completely screw you over, and even the law won't stop them. There is nothing that should make you think that anything you can do short of legal action can make them change that.


4

There's people, and then there's politicians. There's no difference between them, other than that politicians talk about policies. But anyone can talk about policies, hence the saying that everyone's an expert in football and politics. Up until now, you've been a regular folk, but the moment you answer anything to that investor, you're a politician. Just ...


3

Is the CTO good for her current role? If the CTO is mired in detail, becoming a perpetual bottleneck and consistently missing her commitments then this sounds like a No. CTO's normally have a much more strategic focus on evolving the tech stack, reducing risk, designing and building new enabling technologies and technical and architectural standards. Also ...


3

Not answering the question itself, my advice to you, if you say that your product solely relies on your modifications being kept a secret, is to find a new workplace, yesterday! Why? Francis needs no more than going online via an internet-cafe and/or using the free WiFi of a "regular" cafe and using a strong, reliable VPN service, one that doesn't keep logs ...


2

Summary: Shit happened. A lot of it was due to Lee (who got himself fired) and Ling (who got himself reprimanded) at the expense of Francis. Francis would be a valuable employee, but is now pissed off (understandably) and shows behaviour that threatens your company (not a good move, and not a clever move). Before Francis went off the rails, the best ...


2

I'm not a lawyer, but one question that does come to mind is: are you really forbidden from drinking during lunch? I mean, was it conveyed to you in some unequivocal, official company manner, for example, a guidebook, a new workers orientation day or, worse for your case, in the contract? Again, no lawyer, but if the answer is no and is genuine, or it's ...


2

He plans to make large portions of the code, much of which is in "Linux Kernel" and "Docker" code, public, due to "an obligation to the FOSS community". Your question is mainly about the human resource aspect, but there is an important piece of information that should be clarified. The GPL license does not force you to make the code "public", you only ...


1

When faced with a difficult and frustrating situation at work, it can be easy for me to feel like I need to push hard and argue my case. I want other people to believe my side of the story, and respect my ideas. This can leave me feeling like I need to fight back when I've been wronged, but before doing so, I try to ask myself a few questions: What do I ...


1

Professionally speaking, as others have already posted, you really should simply move on from this job. The reason I post a separate answer is that perhaps the most important aspect left for you of this job is how you will explain it in interviews. There's no one perfect answer as each interviewer will see your story their own way. Generally, though, ...


1

IMHO, you should look up for number 1 - you. I wouldn't trust your current employer to uphold the deal, given they reneged several times on verbal agreements. As for going internal at the client - you need to check local labor laws and your current contract, but to me it seems as best possible resolution. Good luck and please keep us posted


1

Neither side is looking good in this situation, but Francis has already poisoned the office - he needs to go. Advise your directors to sort this as soon as possible. You do not want people like him inside your company. Your company may suffer in the short term, by losing talent, but it'll be less of a problem than you imagine. If it costs eight months ...


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