Re: ethics, morals in documentation?

Subject: Re: ethics, morals in documentation?
From: Scott Turner <sturner -at- airmail -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 5 Apr 2001 11:09:36 -0500


Yesterday myself and several other staff were
called into a meeting and asked if we'd have any
problems modifying our product for a company that can
best be described as a porn empire.

Our managers were very earnest, explaining that we
wouldn't be exposed to objectionable content. We'd
only have to 'wipe clean' any mention of our company
and product name. Then we would modify the interface
and the online help to suit the customer's needs.


Does it matter who uses our documentation? Or what
it's used to accomplish? Is it common for companies to
give employees the choice between participating and
not participating in a project? If so, what are some
of the repercussions of not participating?

I find it refreshing that your company is taking that much of an interest in your desires, but their actions are firmly in their own legal interests in order not to be sued by the employees. In this case there is no legal way that they could discriminate against an employee who declined to work on the project, again a decision driven by fears of litigation.

Of course it matters who uses your documentation and what it is intended to accomplish. That is why AG Farber is paying restitution to the survivors of the holocost. It is along the same lines that we have criminal statutes. You can be hanged for just following orders.

Scott Turner
(Not my real name. I'm just using it to hide my identity and pass the blame on to me,...him,... shucks, the cats out of the bag now.)


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