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Discussion on: I was emailed after abandoning a registration form. I did not click Submit. This is not ok.

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djsullenbarger profile image
David Sullenbarger

That's an awesome idea until you have kids.

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blindfish3 profile image
Ben Calder

No. That's a cop-out. I have kids; and I want to make the world a better place for them. If everyone makes a stand against this kind of crap then employers will stop expecting developers to screw over their fellow humans for the sake of a quick buck.

Fortunately my current employers also have appropriate ethical standards. If yours don't then start looking for another job; or better still raise you concerns with them. Case in point: I totally respect the Facebook employees making a stand over Zuckerberg's lame response to Trump's incitement to violence towards protesters in the US.

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djsullenbarger profile image
David Sullenbarger

Then you'll agree to pay my mortgage (or rent), fill up my fridge, keep my lights on and keep my kids in their private schools (my choice, and I do not care if anyone disagrees).

Agreed, if everyone takes a stand, but that's not happening over something this trivial .. and I really like my life the way it is. This is not the hill I would even consider dying on; you can have it.

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dtobias profile image
Dom

Your point would be valid if he wasn't a developer drowning in job opportunities (unless he's a very bad one maybe.. but even then)

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blindfish3 profile image
Ben Calder

I guess there has to be some balance though: there presumably are developers out there for whom job security is not guaranteed; or too great a risk (as TH Jones II reasonably suggests). But in that case I'm not sure I would consider an employer who engages in shady/illegal practices as a safe long-term bet and would still be looking to move on.

As for David - he clearly enjoys his privilege. I don't disagree that in the grand scheme of things this is a comparatively trivial example; but the question is: where do you draw the line?

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djsullenbarger profile image
David Sullenbarger • Edited

Very very far from here. And don't think I missed the brush you're trying to paint me with by using the word 'privilege'. FFS, I'm a 48 year old liberal ... it's just that the world isn't as black and white (i.e. simple) as I used to think it was.

Gosh darn, now I know how it feels to be on the receiving end of shiat like this.

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blindfish3 profile image
Ben Calder • Edited

Sorry if I've offended; but let's be clear: most full-time employed developers are in a privileged position - myself most definitely included. IMO we should therefore take some responsibility for the world we are helping to create. If we're not willing to push back over something this 'trivial' then where does it end?

In Europe what this company did would be considered illegal. To me that's a clear line I won't cross. In fact that makes it an easy decision to make and an easy stand to take; however complex the world happens to be. Maybe it's not what you intended; but your response gave the distinct impression that your material comforts were well worth the price of breaking this 'trivial' law.

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djsullenbarger profile image
David Sullenbarger

"but your response gave the distinct impression that your material comforts were well worth the price of breaking this 'trivial' law."

No, my point was it's not 'illegal' (loaded term) here and I already bitch about the cops (as a white guy and have for years), selfish policies (basically: 'conservative' ideals) and privacy (believe it or not) ... but I also know (my peers) don't know too much about GDPR and as soon as I mention it's a "Euro" thing 1/2 of them would tune me out (not sure I blame them) and the other 1/2 would probably roll their eyes

I do enjoy honest debates and I do not consider your privacy (or mine) trivial in any way whatsoever and I think the current state of affairs is disgusting (on both sides of the pond). To me, it seems like the problem I run into is that I have a very measured, pragmatic approach to things (it comes with age so they say) ... and don't think it's quite time for a lot of very important things (yet, sadly) so people think I'm arguing against an idea ... I'm usually not. People (rightfully) want to fix everything that broken right now .. and in my experience that's just not the way things work in the real world.

Let's fix the obvious problems with criminal law first. Not addressing this first (and by itself) is offensive to me and trivializes real suffering . You can have my freakin privacy if it'll keep people alive (which should be a false dichotomy in a free society) and out of jail (unless you are actually dangerous to society)

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blindfish3 profile image
Ben Calder

I guess we're looking at things from somewhat different cultural perspectives. The impression I have of the US is that things are really weighted against you: on face value it all looks so appealing - if you happen to be on the right side of the social divide. But if there really is no safety net and you fall on hard times you're essentially a slave to whatever system those with power have set up.

To put my original comment in context: I was able to give up both a toxic work environment and (IMO) a toxic country (the UK); move to another country with no contacts - and where I don't speak the language - and find gainful employment all in the space of 6 months. I appreciate that not everyone has that luxury; but that's precisely my point: those of us who do should use that leverage to effect meaningful change. So if an employer did put me in a position that went against my personal ethics (let alone the law) and resisted all my attempts to push back I really would have no hesitation to quit.

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djsullenbarger profile image
David Sullenbarger • Edited

"..I have of the US is that things are really weighted against you"

Heh, it's funny how much things change. When I lived 'abroad' in the late 80's and early 90's I was distressed to learn how much everyone else in the world seemed to be paying attention to everything we did and said (looking for a 'sign', it seemed) ... actually, a lot of the people who lived in the 'shiat hole' countries seemed to have the impression we were mere minutes from swooping in and saving them from something or another.

It was an unrealistically high opinion that was obviously going to to swing to the other extreme at some point (which it has) ...

Every place has good and bad parts my friend and I prefer being here ... or down in Australia. Not real fond of European culture .. it felt inscrutably "class" based (to an outsider at least) and I can't think of many things that bother me more (though I do enjoy hanging with Slavs ... )