As for HP. The article that apparently got CEO Mark Hurd and his team of snoops all lathered up ran on CNET in January. Itâ€™s pretty harmless. Reginald Brown, a lawyer at Wilmer Hale who represents George â€œJayâ€ Keyworth, the so-called leaker, sent me a copy of the CNET story along with about 30 pages of background material that demonstrates that just about everything that Keyworth told reporter Dawn Kawamoto was already on the public record. One quick example.
“Though HPâ€™s direct sales technology is expected to undergo changes, one thing thatâ€™s not likely to happen is a merging of the HP and Compaq PC brands, the source said.”
Hereâ€™s what Todd Bradley, an HP executive said a month earlier on a conference call with analysts, posted at HPâ€™s website:
As far as, Andy, your question about Compaq and HP, weâ€™ve done and are completing a lot of work to understand what those two brands stand for because they do stand for different things. I think, as we go forward.. youâ€™ll see much better delineation between the two.
Then again, CNETâ€™s Kawamoto did reveal the following about HP’s January 2006 management retreat:
Those in attendance worked from early morning to late evening, with few breaks given beyond meals, said a source with the company. “By the time the lectures were done at 10 p.m., we were pooped and went to bed,” the source said.
For this, HP spied on directors, reporters and its own employees. Makes you wonder not just about CEO Hurd’s ethics, but about his judgment.