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(Sydney Morning Herald)   Uber Geek who helped create the first firewall, internet forums, early word processors and Alta Vista search engine, fired from Google for being too old   (smh.com.au) divider line 77
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6781 clicks; posted to Geek » on 10 Oct 2007 at 6:06 AM (6 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2007-10-10 06:12:27 AM
"The silver-haired Reid has given evidence that some of his colleagues referred to him as an "old man", an "old guy" and an "old fuddy-duddy"

Yeah, because all the young hip people I know use the phrase "fuddy duddy".
 
2007-10-10 06:16:00 AM
totes fuddz, yo.
 
2007-10-10 06:17:24 AM
i169.photobucket.com
your old
 
2007-10-10 06:36:02 AM
Wow. So much for that whole "Do no evil" schtick of theirs, huh? The funny part about ageism is that, unlike most forms of discrimination, the people doing the discrimination will eventually be a part of the class they're discriminating against. Here's to hoping they get it twice as bad as they gave it.
 
2007-10-10 06:42:31 AM
"I don't dye my hair orange and ride a unicycle to work," he said in a telephone interview.

I lol'd.
 
2007-10-10 06:47:40 AM
If he was as good at his job as he claims he was, why can't he find a new one?

FTFA: Googlers enjoy a host of perks including free food from 11 gourmet cafeterias, subsidised exercise and language classes, laundry facilities, hairdressers, masseurs and even a personal concierge to help them make reservations.

Little wonder that the internet search company reportedly receives some 1300 job applications a day.


Make that 1301. I'm sure they need a chick to run around the office and help the employees keep up with their comic books. I would be just perfect for the job!

/language classes are awesome
//I'd work in a sorority for minimum wage if I got good language classes
///I'd need a stipend for comic books, though
 
2007-10-10 06:52:25 AM
Tachikoma: If he was as good at his job as he claims he was, why can't he find a new one?

I think he is after that projected 60 million.
 
2007-10-10 06:58:16 AM
karlcore: Wow. So much for that whole "Do no evil" schtick of theirs, huh? The funny part about ageism is that, unlike most forms of discrimination, the people doing the discrimination will eventually be a part of the class they're discriminating against. Here's to hoping they get it twice as bad as they gave it. often times it makes perfect sense to discriminate based on age as skills deteriorate over time and people are unwilling to take a pay cut as they become less productive


FTFY
 
2007-10-10 07:26:38 AM
God, I am really starting to loathe that company. The "we're so progressive and hip" shtick makes me hate it even more.

/I doubt that, say, Norbert Wiener would have lasted a week there
//huge, monopolistic corporations cannot be trusted, period.
 
2007-10-10 07:30:49 AM
You're the jerk... jerk: often times it makes perfect sense to discriminate based on age as skills deteriorate over time and people are unwilling to take a pay cut as they become less productive


Wisdom and experience, meh who needs it? Let's repeat our old mistakes. I say hire him back as a consultant. I wish I knew half of what he knows.
 
2007-10-10 07:35:54 AM
Makh: You're the jerk... jerk: often times it makes perfect sense to discriminate based on age as skills deteriorate over time and people are unwilling to take a pay cut as they become less productive


Wisdom and experience, meh who needs it? Let's repeat our old mistakes. I say hire him back as a consultant. I wish I knew half of what he knows.


Because there never becomes a point in when the downside being old overcomes the advantages of wisom and experience.
 
2007-10-10 07:44:24 AM
I've been told that I've been too senior for certain positions I've applied for.

At 30.

And they required 5-10 years experience, knowledge of antiquated operating systems, etc.

I feel like I belong at a Museum. Actually, I do work at one come to think of it...
 
2007-10-10 07:46:55 AM
It sounds like it was not so much as he was old, as he did not buy into their work 16 hours a day crap. All those perks are designed to get you to stay at work and have no life outside of work.

/am self employed so I work 16 hours a day and have no life outside of work
//except Fark
// O shiat, thats pathetic.
 
2007-10-10 08:08:34 AM
mdfitzsimmons: "The silver-haired Reid has given evidence that some of his colleagues referred to him as an "old man", an "old guy" and an "old fuddy-duddy"

Yeah, because all the young hip people I know use the phrase "fuddy duddy".


Oh come on, like anybody who works in the computer field is "hip".
 
2007-10-10 08:24:14 AM
You're the jerk... jerk: Because there never becomes a point in when the downside being old overcomes the advantages of wisom and experience.

That may be so, but he was 54 when he was fired. Isn't 65 the retirement age often? Eh whatev, that's all the bait I'm taking.
 
2007-10-10 08:32:06 AM
He clearly needs to take up riding his bike into the office and all problems would be solved. Just make sure there are no gears.
 
2007-10-10 08:33:54 AM
Didn't Logan's Run come up with a solution to this kinda thing?
 
2007-10-10 08:42:15 AM
"Well, new ideas are fine. But they are also illegal."

/dunder-mifflin
 
2007-10-10 08:57:55 AM
For health reasons and also because he valued his family life Reid said he would generally leave the office at 7pm - a habit not widely observed in a workplace where employees often worked late.

Well known Google workaholics include vice president Marissa Mayer who turns up for work at 9am and often doesn't leave the office until after midnight.

"I like to sleep in my bed and not a couch in the office," said Reid. "So I would typically go home at dinner time and after dinner I would log on to the computer and work from home."

According to Reid, Google provided breakfast, lunch and dinner and on more than one occasion he was asked why he wasn't staying at the office for dinner.

"They do everything they can to get you to spend all of your waking hours there," he said.

The father of four said while at Google his work "dominated my life" and he would routinely clock up 12 hour days.



Oh yeah that sounds like a great place to work. I love 14 hour days, 7 days a week. I bet the burn out rate and divorce rate for employees is insanely high.
 
2007-10-10 09:27:00 AM
Let that be a lesson to you all: Don't age.
 
2007-10-10 09:28:41 AM
Galen_Rasputin I bet the burn out rate and divorce rate for employees is insanely high.

Divorce rate? You are assuming they are interested in marriage. I remember watching an old special with Bob Cringely. This was during this late 90s. He interviewed a guy who was talking about how he thought girls and dating just got in the way of "code time."

To me it is a fine line. You got to balance between letting a business run their operations the way they want and not screwing someone over.

I hope the guy gets the $60 million. It sounds like they have a case. You would think Google wouldn't leave a trail of incriminating emails.
 
2007-10-10 09:57:26 AM
You're the jerk... jerk:
Because there never becomes a point in when the downside being old overcomes the advantages of wisom and experience.

Memento te ese mortalum.

When I was 20, I never thought I'd live to see 30. When I was 30, I pretended that I wasn't 25. Now that I'm closing in on 40, I can accept that I'm not going to live forever and that maybe twelve hour days aren't the best use of my time. My company will just have to settle for a solid 40/wk.

Galen_Rasputin:
Oh yeah that sounds like a great place to work. I love 14 hour days, 7 days a week. I bet the burn out rate and divorce rate for employees is insanely high.

I've worked with (not for) Google and it is. You can keep that pace when you're in your twenties but it will eventually wear you down. Google is the next step in the "work as life" business environment chartered by Microsoft.
 
2007-10-10 09:58:30 AM
equilibrium:
When I was 30, I pretended that I wasn't 25
 
2007-10-10 10:05:11 AM
So he lost the 60 million in stock when he was let go?

I would kill my boss if I lost 60 million because he fired me.

/seriously
 
2007-10-10 10:05:32 AM
FTFA: Reid, who is a devout Anglican and a leading member of a society dedicated to using the internet to promote unity among Christians, also suffers from type two diabetes.

FAIL

$5 says this is the REAL reason he's being canned, but nobody will come out with it because it would get them proper sued.

and uh...
Make that 1301. I'm sure they need a chick to run around the office and help the employees keep up with their comic books. I would be just perfect for the job!
Your newsletter, let me subscribe to it. You can has rearrange my comics books? Also, Section 9 is my daddy, and I'd do unspeakable things to the Major.
 
2007-10-10 10:13:06 AM
The whaaaat?

upload.wikimedia.org
 
2007-10-10 10:14:28 AM
www.salesandmarketing.com
has a few thoughts on ageism

also, would like to offer you a gift basket
 
2007-10-10 10:26:54 AM
got 23 years experience in my profession. i try to pass on the wisdom gathered along the way but if they don't listen, i just pull up my skirts and sit back to watch the train wreck and hope i don't get splattered. its great for a few laughs. getting old is a blast. one thing i've learned is that the secret to work is working smart, not working hard. i can do in two hours what the twentysomethings do in 8. spend the rest of the day surfing Fark.
 
2007-10-10 10:32:51 AM
You're the jerk... jerk:
Because there never becomes a point in when the downside being old overcomes the advantages of wisom and experience.


Every damn day at work I have to rein in some young punk's stupid coding mistakes that seemed like a great idea to him/her. The same mistakes that I made back when I was a young punk. Just that small part of my job saves my company far more than my annual salary.

So you go ahead and start yourself a company and fire any workers who start to wrinkle. Eventually that will be your downfall. In a knowledge company, your knowledge base is everything.
 
2007-10-10 10:40:00 AM
I donYou're the jerk... jerk: Makh: You're the jerk... jerk: often times it makes perfect sense to discriminate based on age as skills deteriorate over time and people are unwilling to take a pay cut as they become less productive


Wisdom and experience, meh who needs it? Let's repeat our old mistakes. I say hire him back as a consultant. I wish I knew half of what he knows.

Because there never becomes a point in when the downside being old overcomes the advantages of wisom and experience.


Sometimes I think it's less the "slowness of being old" and more the "damn, his healthcare is getting expensive" angle. Not necessarily with Google, but definitely with some other companies I know.
 
2007-10-10 10:40:07 AM
Hey, as long as the right dildo ads come up on my search pages, I don't care WHO they fire.
 
2007-10-10 10:42:06 AM
Al Gore got fired?? But he INVENTED the Internet!
 
2007-10-10 10:42:13 AM
Evil Twin Skippy: I've been told that I've been too senior for certain positions I've applied for.

At 30.

And they required 5-10 years experience, knowledge of antiquated operating systems, etc.

I feel like I belong at a Museum. Actually, I do work at one come to think of it...


There is a difference between being too "senior" vs too "old". The "senior" comment means they don't want to pay what you are worth. Instead, they want the project to run way long and over budget and then not do what they need it to do. When will business types figure out that they will pay either way?

Of course, in a lot of companies the decision-maker will be moved somewhere else by the time the bill is due.
 
2007-10-10 11:03:57 AM
www.scifilm.org

"You are OBSOLETE."

 
2007-10-10 11:07:55 AM
Interesting case. I really don't know which side to back here -- and I'm a developer on the north side of 40.

Google sounds like a heck of a place to work, but I really don't have the drive and energy to put in 14-hour days. I did it for fun and for love of the work when I was in my 20s and early 30s. But now, with two young kids at home, my personal balance has shifted.

It sounds like he wasn't willing to push himself to the extremes that his peers and supervisors expected. Whether those expectations are reasonable and wise is another issue.

I don't know whether he was "slow, fuzzy and lethargic", but I do know that those characteristics become an issue. I also know that they aren't inevitably correlates of age. A sixty-year-old lab director of my acquaintaince grouses frequently that he just can't process information as quickly as he did twenty years ago, but he still runs rings around most of the graduate students I know.

I've seen people receive glowing performance reviews when their actual work absolutely stank. Sometimes the reviewer doesn't have good visibility into the reviewee's work; sometimes they "want to be nice"; sometimes there's a kind of grade inflation, where bonuses are divvied up according to reviews, and you're screwing your direct reports if you don't inflate their reviews the same way other managers inflate theirs.

I've seen people who did spectacular work in "the early days" -- people you may have heard of -- who pretty much rest on their laurels, or want to be treated as oracles. At the other extreme, there are people like Doug Englebart, who still has no patience for small-talk or red tape, forty years after he set the course for modern personal computing.

Interesting problem, with lots of ramifications, and no clear solutions.
 
2007-10-10 11:16:45 AM
"he would generally leave the office at 7pm - a habit not widely observed in a workplace where employees often worked late."

Um, isn't working until 7, "working late?" No wonder I'll never be rich...
 
2007-10-10 11:17:47 AM
TurnerBrown: It sounds like it was not so much as he was old, as he did not buy into their work 16 hours a day crap. All those perks are designed to get you to stay at work and have no life outside of work.

This.

Google wants a slave force and wants to bring back the faux luxuries of the dot.com days to do it. Gourmet cafeteria? Washers and dryers on the premises? Various and vague benefits that are designed to sound good and ignore the sheer amounts of time you're going to spend at work? I'm half surprised they're not calling it a cure for skin cancer at this point.

But I can give you one valid reason why they're pushing the 'young and hip and oh-so-self aware!' crap: just like in Ann Arbor, they're pushing it so it can appeal to delusional and bitter twentysomething idealists who want a combination of career-as-life and to erase the useless that normal jobs have of not affecting the world. It's a very clever con, it is!
 
2007-10-10 11:18:36 AM
karlcore: Wow. So much for that whole "Do no evil" schtick of theirs, huh? The funny part about ageism is that, unlike most forms of discrimination, the people doing the discrimination will eventually be a part of the class they're discriminating against. Here's to hoping they get it twice as bad as they gave it.

My law prof used to say that Age discrimination should be treated the most seriously of all forms of discrimination, because, unlike any other kind, EVERYONE has the potential to eventually be part of the protected class.
 
2007-10-10 11:19:26 AM
At 39, I'm getting a kick out of these replies...

Every time I've considered applying for a position at Google, especially when they opened up their Zurich office, a little warning bell went off that stopped me. I wasn't quite sure what it was, but maybe this is it.
 
2007-10-10 11:19:26 AM
img73.imageshack.us
 
2007-10-10 11:23:03 AM
You're the jerk... jerk: often times it makes perfect sense to discriminate based on age as skills deteriorate over time and people are unwilling to take a pay cut as they become less productive


FTFY


pity its illegal to do so. Little something called federal Law says its illegal to discriminate against those over 40 just because of their age. Hope you have no HR functions where you work
 
2007-10-10 11:23:16 AM
Privately owned companies (as opposed to government agencies) should be allowed to fire anyone at any time for any reason. Barring contracts they have with their employees, that sort of thing. But the government should not be able to punish you for firing an employee for any reason you see fit.
 
Ant
2007-10-10 11:27:03 AM
Alright, where's the picture of the "young" Creed from The Office?
 
2007-10-10 11:29:45 AM
Tachikoma: Make that 1301. I'm sure they need a chick to run around the office and help the employees keep up with their comic books. I would be just perfect for the job!

You gotta dress like the Major to get that kind of job there. And speaking of which...

ZPrime: Section 9 is my daddy, and I'd do unspeakable things to the Major.

img411.imageshack.us
Or she'd do unspeakable things to you.
 
2007-10-10 11:34:28 AM
TurnerBrown It sounds like it was not so much as he was old, as he did not buy into their work 16 hours a day crap. All those perks are designed to get you to stay at work and have no life outside of work.

Word! The amazing thing is that more places don't catch on to how easy young people with no social life are to dupe in this way.

//except Fark
// O shiat, thats pathetic.


Noob. Most of us internalize that pain within six months. I keep my pain of social life=fark near my gallbladder, and take it out to lick the salty goodness now and then.
 
2007-10-10 11:36:35 AM
All that talk about Google being an awesome, inspirational place to work comes off as uter bullshiat. Why is it that every time a company has this reputation, it turns out to be nothing more than a front for a slave-shop? Further, why do people still fall for that shiat?

If a company has an onsite gym and throw free food at you and have on-site massage and so forth...you shouldn't be in awe, you should be questioning why all that is necessary.
 
2007-10-10 11:39:44 AM
Tachikoma: I'm sure they need a chick to run around the office and help the employees keep up with their comic books. I would be just perfect for the job!

/language classes are awesome
//I'd work in a sorority for minimum wage if I got good language classes
///I'd need a stipend for comic books, though


I literally cannot believe that I'm the first one to say this, but...

How YOU doin'?
 
2007-10-10 11:40:56 AM
[looks at vending machine] Hey brah, I've been meaning to ask you, can we get some Red Bull for these things? Sometimes a guy's gotta ride the bull, am I right? Later skater.

farm1.static.flickr.com
 
2007-10-10 11:51:47 AM
The real zinger is...THEY will never be rich, their BOSSES will. These poor worker bees will hopefully wake up at some point and realize that they've been had, and blew the best years of their lives. Sure they make 90K a year, but spending 80+ hours a week to make it, really defeats any reason to need all that cash. You can have a great empty house, and a beautiful car that sits in the Google parking garage.

work to live, not live to work.
 
Ant
2007-10-10 11:56:44 AM
i2.photobucket.com

Who let all these old people in here, brah?
 
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