PermaLinkKevin Schofield: The Elephant In The Middle of The Room
12:06:50 PM

If you've been following all the posts about Microsoft's backing away from supporting a bill in the Washington state legislature that included a gay rights provision, I encourage you to read my old friend and a very long-term Microsoft employee Kevin Schofield's essay about it. If you haven't been following it, Scoble's blog is probably the best place to start. He's got numerous posts on the subject in just the past three or four days days, so using the calendar navigator on his site may be the way to go, but these two posts and this comment thread are probably the best place to start.


I've added my own comments to Kevin's post. It boils down to this: a corporation has a series of choices to make about what sort of organizationt they want ot be, and how they want to be seen. Microsoft's choice on this issue about what they want to be is long-established and commendable. It is apparent to me that how they want to be seen, however, became more important to them when they decided their legislative affairs priorities for this year. It is possible for a company to keep what they are and how they are seen somewhat separate, but once a public position is taken on a social any movement on that statement is properly interpreted as a reflection on not just what you want seen, but also what you are. Microsoft is still, I'm sure, very strongly committed to diversity within itself, but there has been a change in what they are. They are no longer strongly committed to promoting a business environement in their home state that matches their own committment to diversity.

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