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Perl's Chip Salzenberg Sued, Home Raided 698

Posted by jamie
from the whistleblower dept.
Chip Salzenberg writes "In April of this year, Health Market Science of King of Prussia, PA, told police that they feared I was misappropriating trade secrets. That very afternoon, police raided my house with a search warrant to seize every computer in the house, paper files, CDs, and DVDs... even my wireless router and cable modem!" Chip was the pumpking for perl's 5.004 release. Keep reading for his description of his current legal troubles, and for a shortcut into what he says prompted his former company's actions, read his letter warning about abuse of open proxies.

Chip continues: "The key evidence in the search warrant was so ridiculous as to be surreal: CVS logs indicating that I downloaded more than I uploaded, and that I sometimes accessed the company network from home. Apparently, for company management, the police, and a judge, working at home through a gateway the company set up for that very purpose, and refraining from editing every source file for every code change, is a sign of nefarious behavior.

My behavior in accessing the company network was entirely within my job description and in no way involved misappropriation of anything. For the more than two years that I worked at HMS, I used ssh and CVS to access company files with my laptop both from work and home, with management knowledge and approval.

What would lead management to such a sudden action? Days beforehand, I had made an internal report of unethical and apparently illegal behavior by the company: Use of open proxies for web harvesting to avoid blockage by web site operators. HMS apparently decided that working with me to address their use of open proxies was not an option.

Health Market Science is a large corporation with, compared to me, effectively infinite resources. My legal bills have topped $40K already over just two months. If HMS succeeds in tarring me with their false accusations, what's to stop your employer or client from doing the same to you, should your relationship sour?

Friends have set up GeeksUnite.net, an informational web site and Legal Defense Fund. The site includes the search warrant, my letter about open proxy abuse, and court documents.

Please contribute to my Defense Fund to fight this attack on the normal and legal work practices of millions of tech workers. Every little bit counts! If every person who visits the site contributes only ten dollars, that will make a huge difference. Only through community effort can we protect ourselves."

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Perl's Chip Salzenberg Sued, Home Raided

Comments Filter:
  • by cranos (592602) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:34PM (#12954856) Homepage Journal
    I'm guessing something like a release manager.
  • by ReverendHoss (677044) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:35PM (#12954885)
    The person in charge of maintaining the Perl code used to have (still has?) a stuffed pumpkin they used to pass around. Project manager is a good parallel.
  • by ivoras (455934) <ivoras @ f e r .hr> on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:37PM (#12954911) Homepage
    I see that the glorious art of asking the google first is nearly abandoned.
    Here's the first hit: http://www.perl.com/doc/manual/html/Porting/pumpki n.html#Why_is_it_called_the_patch_pumpk [perl.com].
  • by cratermoon (765155) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:37PM (#12954912) Homepage
    Gosh, I could google it faster than slashdot will let me finish a post: http://catb.org/~esr/jargon/html/P/pumpking.html [catb.org]
  • Prey (Score:3, Informative)

    by Necromancyr (602950) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:40PM (#12954953)
    Is it just me or does this sound similar to the begining of the Crichton book Prey?

    (Could be that I just read it yesterday...)
  • by waynegoode (758645) * on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:43PM (#12955001) Homepage
    The website of Health Market Science [healthmarketscience.com] of King of Prussia, PA and their contact page [healthmarketscience.com] and their email address info@healthmarketscience.com [mailto].
  • by Teun (17872) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:44PM (#12955023) Homepage
    Why write up such a paper about the companie's (il)legal activities when it's quite clear the managament expressely supports it/ sees it as a business model?

    Get out or be prepared for a long and costly fight!

  • Re:Pumpking? (Score:2, Informative)

    by uncle_fausty (893001) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:45PM (#12955036)
    I hate to be the guy who says "Search the Frickin' Internet", but... http://search.cpan.org/dist/perl/pod/perlhist.pod [cpan.org] It's the maintainer of a given release of Perl.
  • It says (Score:3, Informative)

    by waynegoode (758645) * on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:49PM (#12955078) Homepage
    Eeeh.. Slashdotted. What's it say?

    skip to: page content [slashdot.org] | links on this page [slashdot.org] | site navigation [slashdot.org] | footer (site information) [slashdot.org]

    We need your support - Please mirror this site. Donate Now.

    Welcome to GeeksUnite.net -->

    About the Site Content Who is Chip? [slashdot.org] About A & C [armstrongcarosella.com] Open Source [opensource.org] perl [perl.org] Parrot [parrotcode.org]

    [slashdot.org]
    CONTRIBUTE NOW to the Chip Salzenberg Defense Fund...

    MIRROR THIS SITE
    Spread the word. This can be any one of us.

    To email us the url, get the latest info or just say "Hi" info@geeksunite.net [mailto]

    Come back frequently for the latest site and case updates.
    Last updated 6/29/2005.

    Join our mailing list info@geeksunite.net [mailto]

    PA Code by Case Subject Search & Seizure
    Return of Property
    Misappropriation
    Trade Secrets
    Harvesting/Open Proxies
    Related Link

    Case Documents The OMITTED Letter [slashdot.org] The Search Warrant [slashdot.org] Plaintiff [slashdot.org] Defendant [slashdot.org]Interveners
    Timeline of Events [slashdot.org]

    [slashdot.org] Please Contribute. Thank you for spending time on our site. It will be updated frequently. Please come back.

    None of the views expressed in the website constitute the views of the Armstrong & Carosella PC law firm, or any
    principals or employees, or agents or experts who have been retained in any capacity in connection with the case.

    Information on this site is for educational purposes. Case Caption: Health Market Science, Inc. v Charles H. Salzenberg, Jr..
    Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. Case Number: 05-11918

    Chip Salzenberg Defense Fund
    Please mirror this site. Learn from it and protect yourself.
    We need your financial assistance to continue the fight. [slashdot.org]
    Donate Now.


    OMITTED from the Company's Pleadings,
    UN-INVESTIGATED by the Detective,
    it caused IMMEDIATE ACTION by the CEO, [slashdot.org]
    READ the LETTER that started it all!

    Why 23 million telecommuters need to be worried about this case
    Or: How your life can land into the "wrong hands".

    Twenty-three million telecommuters (IATC 2003) access their employer's network from home. Some use their own personal computers, while others use a computer their employer assigned to them by their employer. Some bring their laptop to and from work. Do you? Should a dispute [slashdot.org] arise between you and your employer, you may be exposed to the legal tactics and strategies used by Chip's employer.

    The company can file a police report, show logs of your network activity, convince the often insufficiently sophisticated police that your behavior is suspicious and claim they are in "fear" of the loss of their property and/or trade secrets and potentially millions of dollars of profits . If you're a programmer, that is your job description permits you to "appropriate" [slashdot.org]huge source code downloads with only even less uploads - exposing you to a "claim" of theft of your company's confidential and proprietary information and trade secrets [slashdot.org]. All the while you are having an exchage with the CEO by

  • Own grave dug (Score:3, Informative)

    by petesmart (317037) <petesmart@gmail.com> on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:53PM (#12955142) Homepage
    It's disgusting that they can do this, particulary at such personal expense. Sadly, Chip has dug his own grave, I don't know much about US emplyment law, but I don't think whistle bower type protection will be any good, as he approached the company first, and not the authorities who are now chastising him. Working for an ethically dubious employer is tough, say something, and they'll throw the book of selective dismissal conditions at you, say nothing, and, well, like myself, sometimes the roof over your head is worth keeping whilst you seek employment elsewhere.
  • by Doktor Memory (237313) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:54PM (#12955156) Journal
    He said he made an internal report of unethical and possibly illegal behaviour. It doesn't say he took this up with police at all.

    Read the last paragraph of the letter again -- he was definitly threatening them with exposure to the legal authorities.

    And hey, more power too him -- that was certainly the morally right thing to do. But as a practical matter, you want to make damn sure you have all of your ducks in a row and have an old-school carnivore lawyer in your corner before you throw that kind of threat down.
  • Pumpking Definition (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:55PM (#12955174)
    From http://search.cpan.org/dist/perl/pod/perlhist.pod [cpan.org]

    To explain: David Croy once told me once that at a previous job, there was one tape drive and multiple systems that used it for backups. But instead of some high-tech exclusion software, they used a low-tech method to prevent multiple simultaneous backups: a stuffed pumpkin. No one was allowed to make backups unless they had the "backup pumpkin".

    The name has stuck. The holder of the pumpkin is sometimes called the pumpking (keeping the source afloat?) or the pumpkineer (pulling the strings?).

    Therefore, the person in charge of making sure that things arent duplicated/mixed up/general weirdness is the keeper of the pumpkin, or the pumpking.
  • by BroncoInCalifornia (605476) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @06:57PM (#12955184)
    The website of Health Market Science [healthmarketscience.com] of King of Prussia, PA and their contact page [healthmarketscience.com] and their email address info@healthmarketscience.com [mailto].

    Here is where these slease balls brag about their customers. Contact them:
    [healthmarketscience.com] http://www.healthmarketscience.com/customers/custo mers.html [healthmarketscience.com]

  • Re:Any lega rights? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Senjutsu (614542) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @07:02PM (#12955251)
    It might be a violation of the terms of service with their ISP, but I'm not sure it's illegal... In any case, if what he was doing turns out to be illegal then it really doesn't matter if he has the goods on the company or not.

    Depends on which "what he was doing" you mean: if what the company is accusing him of doing were true, whistleblower laws would not protect him. But the charges they are leveling reek of retaliatory accusations with no substance. He is protected from that.

    If the actions he took at the company's behest (ie, developing software to work around ISP blocks of their spyders) is illegal, whistleblower laws do protect him, provided he reports the illegal actions to the proper authorities when he becomes aware of their illegality.
  • by Fiery (21015) * <rsoderberg@gmail.com> on Thursday June 30, 2005 @07:05PM (#12955291) Homepage
    None of the views expressed in the website constitute the views of the Armstrong & Carosella PC law firm, or any
    principals or employees, or agents or experts who have been retained in any capacity in connection with the case.
    Information on this site is for educational purposes. Case Caption: Health Market Science, Inc. v Charles H. Salzenberg, Jr..
    Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. Case Number: 05-11918

    Donate today, to the
    Chip Salzenberg Defense Fund. Over $40k in legal defense fees incurred since April 23, 2005.
    Protect yourself from the same thing happening to you. Learn from this site, mirror it. Please donate. We thank you for your help.
    OMITTED from the Company's Pleadings,
    UN-INVESTIGATED by the Detective,
    it caused IMMEDIATE ACTION by the CEO,
    READ the LETTER that started it all!

    Why care?

    We didn't ask for this fight but we do hope that the telecommuting community learns from it. As a well known contributor to OpenSource and perl for many years, Chip continued his efforts to protect the spirit of opensource and the internet by attempting to inform his employer...sadly it brought on serious consequences in the form of an ugly legal battle with results that can affect all employees and consultants who hook up to an employer's network. We urgently need your help. The Chip Salzenberg Defense Fund is an escrow account sponsored by the law firm of Armstrong and Carosella to help pay the mounting legal defense fees for Chip Salzenberg and his family. The funds will only be used for legal costs to defend Charles Salzenberg and his family against Health Market Science, Inc. Donations are NOT tax deductible. Thank you in advance. We would love to hear from you.

    Donate by email

    You may send us your email address, name, phone number and pledge amount. We will email you back a "Request for payment".
    You'll be able to pay by credit/debit card or using your Paypal account. Send email to: gifts@geeksunite.net.

    Donate by Mail

    If you would prefer to mail your donation, please send it to the following address:

    Chip Salzenberg Defense Fund Escrow
    Care of: Armstrong & Carosella
    882 S. Matlack Street
    Ste. 101
    West Chester, PA 19382

    Make Checks payable to Chip Salzenberg Defense Fund Escrow" (NOT tax deductible).

    If you have questions or need additional information about making a gift to the Chip Salzenberg Defense Fund,
    please call 925-457-6634 or email gifts@geeksunite.net.
  • Time line of events (Score:5, Informative)

    by cursion (257184) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @07:09PM (#12955331) Homepage
    Pulled this off the site ...

    June 21, 2005 Intervener's Too Late? - DA Gives Away Computers Early. Company Already Imaging.

    June 20, 2005 Emergency Stays Filed by All Parties - In an Attempt to Keep Property from falling into the Wrong Hands

    June 17, 2005 Judge Awards Personal Property to Company - Admits to NOT Reading Salzenberg's Opposition.

    June 16, 2005 Company Runs Interference - Files Motion to Intercept Released Computers Contrary to the May 2, Order and the "Return of Property" laws.

    June 6, 2005 DA Drops Criminal Investigation - Annouces Return of the Seized Property to Salzenberg.

    May 2, 2005 Company Agrees Not to Enforce Exparte Orders - Property to be Returned to Salzenberg unless another motion is filed.

    April 26, 2005 Company files Exparte - Receives orders to intercept equipment from police to start imaging.

    April 25, 2005 Salzenberg receives back dated letter from company "accepting his resignation"

    April 21, 2005 Salenberg's Property Seized within hours of police report made by CEO.

    April 20, 2005 Salzenberg and CEO exchange emails and faxes in an attempt to negotiate a face to face conversation. CEO finally gives the OK to Salzenberg bringing an attorney with him.

    April 19, 2005 Salzenberg sends compliance letter to CEO. Salzenberg also sends follow up message to COO that he has "not resigned". CEO immediately locks Salzenberg out of company email and network.

    April 18, 2005 Another employee leaves company after voicing compliance issues.

  • by Fiery (21015) * <rsoderberg@gmail.com> on Thursday June 30, 2005 @07:15PM (#12955397) Homepage
    19 April 2005

    Charles H. Salzenberg, Jr.
    P O Box 537
    Southeastern, PA 19399

    Health Market Science
    2700 Horizon Dr. Ste 200
    King of Prussia, PA 19406

    Attn: Mark Brosso, Matt Reichert, Rich Ferris, Rob DiMarco, Dorothy O'Hara
    Re: Legality and Morality of Harvesting Operations

    It has recently come to my attention that that HMS is continuing the illegal and immoral web harvesting operation that I brought to Rich Ferris's attention over a month ago, in a conversation including Tim McCune. HMS's continued harvesting operations are a threat to me legally, morally, and professionally.

    That HMS systematically collects data from web sites without the express permission of their owners is well known (inside HMS). Some web site operators are not pleased when (if) they figure out that their sites are being harvested. They sometimes respond by blocking the network addresses of the harvesting machines. This was a common problem in harvesting when I hired on to HMS in December of 2002. At that time, the accepted strategy for getting around such blocks was to obtain multiple web hosting accounts to act as proxies for HMS's harvesting systems. I did not then realize that knowingly bypassing blocks placed by web server operators was illegal. (As a result of other research, detailed below, I now know that has been illegal all along.)

    As bad as HMS's past harvesting practice was, current practice is worse ... much worse. HMS has taken a page from the spammer playbook and is, deliberately and under management direction, hijacking thousands of vulnerable machines all over the Internet, using them and their network bandwidth without the knowledge or permission of their owners as unwitting accomplices in HMS's data harvesting operation.

    I have confirmed these facts in conversations with several people with first-hand knowledge, including Tim McCune and John Marquart. I asked Tim McCune about HMS's proxy hijacking in the presence of Rich Ferris, a vice president of HMS and a company founder. In that conversation, Tim McCune confirmed to Rich Ferris and me that proxy hijacking was standard practice. Shocked, I informed Tim and Rich that proxy hijacking is very illegal and immoral. They were unmoved. I also have witnesses for other conversations.

    I have also confirmed that the Harvester source code - which I, as a Senior Programmer, am authorized to access - includes Java code which collects lists of such vulnerable computers, called "open proxies," from web sites that maintain lists of them. I have also found the Java code which uses such proxies, without the permission of their owners, to connect to the sites that HMS harvests. The offending source code was written by Rob DiMarco, Tim McCune, and Jason Franklin.

    This deplorable activity by HMS has serious legal, moral, and professional implications.

    First, the legal.

    I am not a lawyer, but I can read the plain English of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, and it is clear to me that hijacking the computers of random people is a crime in Pennsylvania. Under PSC 3933, every instance - every single instance - of hijacking an open proxy is a misdemeanor of the first degree.

    HMS is committing these misdemeanors by the tens of thousands, under explicit management direction, and in accord with corporate strategy. One petty theft may draw little attention; but tens of thousands of petty thefts, all made by one company, at explicit management direction, and in accord with company strategy, might well lead to unpleasant legal consequences. Even a small fine is painful when multiplied by a hundred thousand.

    HMS thus makes itself an attractive target for prosecution by a state's attorney who wants to show himself tough on corporate crime. HMS could be a stand-in for the spammers who commit the same crimes.

    HMS's legal exposure is not limited to Pennsylvania. A number of the sites that HMS harvests are run by governments of other states who would be

  • by mi (197448) <slashdot-2012@virtual-estates.net> on Thursday June 30, 2005 @07:22PM (#12955501) Homepage
    Although your person is pretty well protected by the Constitution, your property is not.

    Your computer can be seized -- and pretty quickly. All non-trivial data (including risky photos of your partner) should be encrypted on disk. Major operating systems support this option -- including FreeBSD [freebsd.org], Windows, and, no doubt, Linux.

    Certainly, "honest people have nothing to hide", but it is not even so much about winning the case (you will, likely, prevail), but also saving yourself a lot of time and money. Your adversary will go through all data found on your machine and your lawyer (don't even think of not hiring one) will be billing you in proportion to the amount of things, the other party brings up. Even if all of it ends up being nothing.

    True, the opponent may demand, that you decrypt the data -- but you (your lawyer) can fight that demand -- it will likely be cheaper, than explaining away all messages in your ExEmployer-folder.

    Do not rely on mere obscurity -- I found out first-hand, that even FreeBSD is "mainstream" enough for professionals (yes, there is a good market for these services) to know it. They came with software (something from SourceForge) to search through filesystems (very easy -- "grep" for the disk devices). For Linux they'd probably even have GUI.

    Treat these guys decently -- they are just doing their jobs. If you do, they are more likely to overlook your older computer, which will let you post about your troubles on Slashdot when they are gone.

    Set up encryption. Encrypt your back-ups, before they leave your computer. Do not automate decryption so that it happens by itself on boot (duh!)

    When you are done, treat yourself to "Cryptonomicon" [amazon.com] for fun and more behind-covering ideas.

  • Ok, the Pennsylvania Common Pleas Court is partially online, and the docket sheets are available with a little digging. Too bad the full text isn't available.

    CRIMINAL MATTER: Docket Number: CP-46-MD-0002495-2005. Filed 4/27/2005. CASE STATUS: CLOSED. Last event was a hearing on the return of property, on 6/10/2005 before Judge William J. Furber, Jr.

    CIVL MATTER: Docet Number: 05-11918 (Judge Hodgson). A deep link to the docket sheet is http://12.40.122.125/FCP2.WEB8/0/P12DIS?CASE-NO=05 -11918 [12.40.122.125]. Looks like a motion for a temporary restraining order and for expedited discovery and preservation of documents was filed on April 26, and was granted ex parte (without the defendant being able to argue) by Judge Joseph J. Smyth. The latest emergency motions appear to be filed to reinstate this order, presumably as a result of the computers being released after the criminal matters were dismissed. I am very curious to know what's going on with the intervenors - Radian Guaranty and Lisa Perdichizzi. It's Perdichizzi who filed a motion for sanctions against the Plaintiffs on June 22, and there's nothing on the docket sheets since then.
  • Re:Uh... (Score:4, Informative)

    by jbolden (176878) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @07:56PM (#12955862) Homepage
    The state of Pennsylvania has a whistleblower protection law for employees of public companies. Judges have tried to extend it to some extent to companies that recieve their revenue from government. That wouldn't apply in this case at all. The law explicitly does not protect Chip.
  • by databyss (586137) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @08:24PM (#12956088) Homepage Journal
    He made no veiled threats. The company was doing an illegal practice. He said "you shouldn't do that, and it's my ethical responsibility to report it to the authorities if you don't stop it."

    He made an internal memo to save the company from public embarassment. He didn't make anything public until they had raided his house.
  • What an idiot (Score:1, Informative)

    by (negative video) (792072) <me@teco-xaco . c om> on Thursday June 30, 2005 @08:26PM (#12956100)
    It can only be an understatement to observe that accessing state government computers in blatant disregard for their acceptable use policies is not legally sound.
    Violating an acceptable use contract is not legally sound, but forming a contract with a web server requires you to enter your name and perform some action. Merely making a policy document available for discretionary download does not form a contract.
    Federal courts have held that web spiders must obey the established ROBOTS.TXT mechanism by which web site owners limit automated access, and that a failure to obey ROBOTS.TXT constitutes trespass.
    Which is also a load of crap. ROBOTS.TXT is an optional advisory system for people who are going out of their way to be friendly. The definitive requirements for web communication are set out in the HTTP specification, which provides SSL, POST requests, and cookies explicitly to support access controls.
    Worse, Montana's web server actually crashed as a result of HMS harvesting it. Once you go beyond access into crashing, you're way into felony territory.
    And now we enter hip wader territory--the BS is getting that deep. A web server that crashes by merely being accessed is defective.
    Shocked, I informed Tim and Rich that proxy hijacking is very illegal and immoral.
    It is neither illegal nor immoral. If a computer owner chooses to make it an open proxy, that is their choice. If they want it not to be an open proxy, they are obligated to either turn it off or install software that does not allow for that feature.
    And in order to protect myself from the repercussions of HMS's illegal and immoral activities, I am carefully considering my legal options, including notifying the appropriate authorities.
    Anyone with two neurons to rub together could have predicted the outcome of this toothless threat. You do not say "Hey, great fire-breathing beast, please stop terrorizing our helpless village", and then kick the dragon in the shin. The natural state of the human animal is war, and laws on paper make a darn flimsy shield.
  • Oops... (Score:3, Informative)

    by jcr (53032) <{moc.cam} {ta} {rcj}> on Thursday June 30, 2005 @08:31PM (#12956146) Journal
    Sorry, my bad.. Looks like they were only ignoring the ROBOTS.TXT files..

    -jcr

  • Opening Line (Score:4, Informative)

    by fm6 (162816) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @08:44PM (#12956229) Homepage Journal
    When somebody says, "I'm not a lawyer, but I know that..." there's a good chance that something nasty is about to happen.

    Chip is engaging in a legal crusade against Health Market Science, and doing it without legal advice. Naturally, HMS does have lawyers, and consults them as to the best way to screw him over. Screwing precedes. Gosh that's a suprise.

  • by Brian See (11276) <{bsee} {at} {spelloutmyrealname.com}> on Thursday June 30, 2005 @08:56PM (#12956309)
    A deep link to the miscellaneous matter is http://ujsportal.pacourts.us/crystal/enterprise9/D SReportsPDF.csp?ct=4&dktno=200068158/a. [pacourts.us]

    Looking at it closer, it might just be the petition for return of property seized pursuant to the warrant. Thinking about the timing, I wouldn't be surprised if the charges never made it to the grand jury...

    In any event, the geeksunited.com timeline says that on June 6 the "DA Drops Criminal Investigation".
  • by putaro (235078) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @09:20PM (#12956462) Journal
    Well, what typically happens is that Engineering is told "You can go hire X heads" (employees). Engineering looks around, tries to find good people, it takes some time, and by the time they are ready to hire someone, upper management goes "Oh, no, you can't have those heads anymore."

    It sucks to be on either end, trust me.
  • RTFC (Score:2, Informative)

    by JLF65 (888379) on Thursday June 30, 2005 @10:44PM (#12957008)
    Did you even bother to look at the dates? The table is upside down - the events at the top of the list occured MORE RECENTLY. The events at the bottom occured FIRST.
  • by james_in_denver (757233) <james_in_denver@nospAM.yahoo.com> on Thursday June 30, 2005 @11:15PM (#12957235)
    LOL, yeah, I knew it would be the end of my job there, so I gave my 2 weeks notice the next day...

    Saved from from getting fired.

    Though overall? It was more for my own "vindication". The woman was a MAJOR *sshole, had covered up some mistakes that had cost the company several hundred thousand/year...Only problem?? it was coming out of MY budget.

    So when I found it and called her on it, it got pretty ugly.

    Best part of the story???

    The corporate division that was getting taken for a ride, HIRED ME BACK as a consultant just two days later...

    Same staff, same meeting room, except THIS time I was sitting on the "other" side of the table...

    That first meeting was SO much fun..............

  • by DerekLyons (302214) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [retawriaf]> on Thursday June 30, 2005 @11:22PM (#12957288) Homepage
    Retain, and have a very long chat with a very good lawyer before you threaten your bosses with police action.

    While this is sound advice, it doesn't necessarily follow from this story.

    He said he made an internal report of unethical and possibly illegal behaviour.

    Try reading his letter rather than the sob story at the head of this discussion - a very different picture emerges. He made an internal report in which he threatened personal legal action against the company and announced that he would no longer performed his assigned work.

  • It's all part of a wider corruption. Large corrupters spend huge amounts to get lazy judges elected, and work for the defeat of judges who do a good job.

    Part of the way corruption of the courts is accomplished by not giving the courts enough money to operate. A 2003-06-24 op-ed article by Charles Williamson, then president of the Oregon State Bar, in The Oregonian, the Northwest's largest newspaper, said, "The crippling loss of nearly one-third of their staff have left our courts unable to hear criminal cases such as car theft, shoplifting, prostitution, fraud and identity theft."

    The corruption of the patent office is part of the same thing. Large corrupt corporations want stupid patents because they can scare others away from coming close to their technology. They don't care if they lose a few court cases. Taking something to court is so expensive that they win just because of the threat.

    The book Other People's Money [fetchbook.info] discusses corporate corruption. It's excellent.

    35 Books and 3 movies say the Bush administration is the most corrupt the U.S. has ever had: Unprecedented Corruption: A guide to conflict of interest in the U.S. government [futurepower.org].

    Many Americans don't want to know that their government has become corrupt, so you can expect hostile comments if you try to talk about corruption.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 01, 2005 @01:02AM (#12957870)
    Pennsylvania is one of the four states that does **NOT** permit this. It's illegal. Electronic Wiretapping and Surveillance Act. $500 fine per recording, and it's not admissible as evidence.

    This is why you NEED A LAWYER!

    There was a case in Florida some years back where a woman filed date-rape charges. Florida is another of the four states. Long story short: Guy recorded her consenting to have sex. Tape was ruled inadmissible. Guy was convicted of rape.

  • by Lew Payne (592648) on Friday July 01, 2005 @02:34AM (#12958294) Journal
    Judging from the Company's actions, if Salzenberg wants to litigate the matter of the return of
    his personal property in an expeditious manner, he should seek out a criminal law attorney and file a
    Jencks motion for the return of said property. It will be heard by a different Judge, and he'll be able
    to show the Company's prejudicial actions. I had to file same to have the FBI return my property to
    me, and (though expensive) it worked like a charm.

    Here's a link to a Jencks Motion [ipsn.org] for the return of property.
  • by turk182x2001 (529188) on Friday July 01, 2005 @02:58AM (#12958375)
    Here is the answer..
    nslookup www.hmsonline.com
    Server: 68.2.16.25
    Address: 68.2.16.25#53
    Non-authoritative answer:
    www.hmsonline.com canonical name = mosquito.hmsonline.com.
    Name: mosquito.hmsonline.com
    Address: 64.233.161.104

    WHOIS results for 64.233.161.104
    Generated by www.DNSstuff.com

    Location: United States [City: Mountain View, California]

    NOTE: More information appears to be available at ZG39-ARIN.

    Using 10 day old cached answer (or, you can get fresh results).
    Hiding E-mail address (you can get results with the E-mail address).

    OrgName: Google Inc.
    OrgID: GOGL
    Address: 1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
    City: Mountain View
    StateProv: CA
    PostalCode: 94043
    Country: US

    NetRange: 64.233.160.0 - 64.233.191.255
    CIDR: 64.233.160.0/19
    NetName: GOOGLE
    NetHandle: NET-64-233-160-0-1
    Parent: NET-64-0-0-0-0
    NetType: Direct Allocation
    NameServer: NS1.GOOGLE.COM
    NameServer: NS2.GOOGLE.COM
    Comment:
    RegDate: 2003-08-18
    Updated: 2004-03-05

    TechHandle: ZG39-ARIN
    TechName: Google Inc.
    TechPhone: +1-650-318-0200
    TechEmail: ************@google.com

    OrgTechHandle: ZG39-ARIN
    OrgTechName: Google Inc.
    OrgTechPhone: +1-650-318-0200
    OrgTechEmail: ************@google.com

    The scumbags are having Google absorb the cost of the Slashdot effect they are receiving.
  • Re:EFF? (Score:4, Informative)

    by ntk (974) on Friday July 01, 2005 @04:01AM (#12958612) Homepage
    Actually, the EFF is a 501(c)3 organization, which means that its specifically restricted as to how much lobbying it can do. Instead, the EFF concentrates on being an advocacy organization, representing defendants and plaintiffs in cases where there's a chance of making good case law.

    (Actually, in practice, *I'm* the majority of the lobbying bit. If I had any influence on dropping people, I'd be like all "Hey drop *him*! Now pick him up! Now drop him again! You other lawyers, bring me a mojito!". But that's not really how lawyers work, alas.)
  • by Tim C (15259) on Friday July 01, 2005 @08:38AM (#12959586)
    When the police find something "suspicious", you don't just say "oh, I have this perfectly plausible excuse which sounds highly improbable to technical incompetents like you" and walk away.

    That'll be because the first thing the bad guys do in that situation is either claim ignorance, or trott out a prepared excuse.

    The police can't take everything they're told at face value, or they'd let everyone go. Yes, it sucks when you're on the receiving end of it, but what's the alternative?
  • by Geekgirl2005 (896548) on Saturday July 02, 2005 @04:46AM (#12967890)
    Let's mix the truth with the untruth.
    1. The fact is no, Lisa Perdichizzi was NOT terminated for incompetance. There is tons of proof for this that will eventually come to light. Brosso gave credit of her work to the young marketing director, This proof is in very tangible form, email and witness testimony.
    2. Lisa had got a nice new job with a very nice company and was making twice as much $$ as HMS...her contract was even renewed with this company. So why would Chip or Lisa care about her position at HMS?
    3. HMS is a perl company. The major applications run on perl and they are continuing to hire perl programmers.
    4. Web harvesting was definitely happening at the company for years. Just not the way Chip thougt. He found out just before the uproar that the methods weren't what he had expected. Again there is proof of this.
    5. I think the Anonymous Coward that wrote this posting needs to put his name up there because it sounds like the same story Brosso told Lisa's new employer, after she had been on the job for 4 months.

    Watch the court documents...
  • by Geekgirl2005 (896548) on Saturday July 02, 2005 @05:10AM (#12967936)
    Oh and one other thing... Thank you all for all your help! Don't let this guy spread lies! Everything think I've said can be verified with hard evidence..and more...

    I went to Capsicum and took an inventory of everything, down to what was imaged and what wasn't. It better all still be there too. It was surreal seeing all my equipment and the children's equipment sitting in a giant conference room.

    Yes, most of the inventory is on the search warrant is mine. The kids have been without their computers for months. They are now scared when they see strangers in the house because it reminds them of the police raid.

    regards, Lisa Perdichizzi
  • by Geekgirl2005 (896548) on Saturday July 02, 2005 @06:06AM (#12968048)
    This is just too early in the morning...the last point I forgot to address.

    Chip does not hold grudges against anybody. Not against HMS, not Brosso. Not anyone. It's not in his character. He is sooo honest he gets himself into trouble...as we can see. He would easily help somebody to his own detriment.

    Chip did NOT take "trade secrets" from HMS. Again this is not possible...it's just not in his character.

    When the cowards give back the evidence they took from us we'll all have a look see.

    Thanks for all your creative help and your financial support! We appreciate it and will continue to fight.

    Lisa
  • by Geekgirl2005 (896548) on Saturday July 02, 2005 @06:35AM (#12968092)
    If there was truly theft of trade secrets why didn't the DA prosecute the case? Why did the DA announce that he was releasing the computers back to Salzenberg?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 02, 2005 @10:48AM (#12968754)
    See here [perl.org]. Basically, before this all started, Chip got tabbed to be lead Perl 6 developer, and got a paying job to do it. He then decides to burn his bridges at HMS by writing a big F-U letter on his way out the door. If he wanted to leave, he just should have said so and not brought this down on himself by provoking a necessary response from the company.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 02, 2005 @11:02AM (#12968817)
    A proxy is a webserver which allows you to forward requests for webpages through it. There are many benifits to this. For instance, if you cache the content returned than future requests for the same content will not require use of bandwidth. this is often used in companies and universities for the exact purpose.

    Proxies can also be used to hide the source of the request. In the university example a request for slashdot.org will appear to come from the university proxy, not the computer of the student requesting the site itself. So, proxies can be used to hide the source computer.

    by "Open proxy" I beleive they mean a proxy which is setup on the internet but not restricted. In the university example the university would likely restrict the use of the proxy to only students on the campus. "Open proxy" I take to mean a proxy without restrictions. More often than not companies and even universities setup proxies without realizing the are open. But there are also "open proxies" that are setup intentionally, expecting people to use them.

    For this reason I disagree where Chip claims the company was "hijacking" computers. Perhaps what they are doing is somewhat shady, but not as bad as hijacking, imo.

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