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We’re offering a free TechCrunch tshirt to any Google employee that forwards that screenshot to us. No questions asked.

Anyone left on HN who still wants to stand up for Arrington's reputation as a journalist?




There are few reporters who wouldn't accept leaked documents. Some of the most famous news stories were based on leaks.


There are hopefully considerably fewer offering explicit quid pro quos for said documents.


I will see the shirt offer and raise him one shirt. Any Google employee who forwards me confidential and highly important legal documents, and thus risking immediate firing if not a lawsuit of their own, will get not one, but two t-shirts! All the way from Italy!

Sheez...


Free startup idea: T-shirt funding pool for leaked documents.


Putting aside that we're talking about a shirt, what is unethical about buying leaked information, as long as it is legitimate news?


It's not legitimate news. It's confidential correspondence. Arrington is seeking to bribe a Google employee to betray his employer by breaching his NDA. If the document were evidence of wrongdoing on Google's part, it would be a different matter -- the employee would be a whistleblower and his betrayal would be laudable. But that's not what we're talking about. Google is the victim of the alleged wrongdoing. If the information gets leaked, they're victimized even further by being deprived of a bargaining chip with Apple.


It's not legitimate news.

Apple lied in an official FCC inquiry. That's news.

Arrington is seeking to bribe a Google employee to betray his employer by breaching his NDA.

The vast majority of news leaks throughout history have been based on ulterior motives; whether they are politically or financially-based, seems inconsequential. TechCrunch isn't a party to that NDA, so they should only consider the public interest of the story.

If the information gets leaked, they're victimized even further by being deprived of a bargaining chip with Apple.

What bargaining chip? The ability to collude to scuttle a government investigation? If the FCC asks for the letter, Google has to give it up anyways.


Apple lied in an official FCC inquiry.

Can someone point out the lie to me?


Mike Arrington said so.


Your kind of assuming that Google would want the FCC investigation to conclude and effectively force Apple into accepting Voice.

But perhaps they would prefer for Apple to just get so uncomfortable over the poking around they accept Voice off bat in an attempt to take the heat off.

Which means Google have that rejection letter as big guns at any later stage.

Yes Google have to give it to the FCC if they ask for it - but if they don't ask (I am not 100% sure of the rules here) they don't have to mention it or do more than vaguely hint at it's existence.

Right?


Lock up your secrets their giving away t-shirts. What employee is going to risk their career for a t-shirt.


More than that, I was wondering: Who would do that for a T-Shirt? Its just disgusting to me (and indicative of why I don't read Tech Crunch) that they are so full of themselves that they feel even a T-Shirt from them holds significant value.


We don't, it's a joke. I am having a hard time believing so many people on this site didn't catch that.


It fits nicely with our expectations.


Agreed, perhaps the work week has sapped people of their sense of humour. Or perhaps there's a rare genetic anomaly that turns people into hackers and leaves them without a single funny-bone in their body.


Its not that its a lost sense of humour, I would guess (because I know why I thought it wasn't a joke) its because of the relatively low opinion many people here have of TechCrunch. Its almost (at least to me) like Nixon, right after Watergate, joking "I wouldn't want you to get a parking ticket..." Sure, it isn't a big deal, but it is rather slimy, and since you already have a low opinion of the party, the whole "joke" is skipped over.

And the fact that sarcasm doesn't translate over the internet well doesn't help any. Or, as I have refered to it: damn you internet and your lack of signifying sarcasm, or, in the semi-pronouncable internet acronym form: DYIAYLOSS.


I don't believe this would have gone over much better if spoken aloud. Sarcasm isn't typically a humour well used in NA, either people can't say it right or people don't understand it. Coming from the UK where sarcasm can be used in every sentence, it's like being the only person with sight in a world of blind people.

I believe (!) should become a standard for sarcasm on the web, it would at least hint people that the line is different from the norm.


Glad you mentioned the UK or I would have no idea what the hell you meant by NA.


Lessee...Google job, T-shirt. I think I'd rather have the job.


It's a joke. Up to you whether you think it's funny or not, but as grounds to question his credibility? Lighten up.


I once passed on a story to TC that had one upvote on HN at the time. It went on to become a huge sensation online and in print worldwide. I won't disclose it but basically the company threatened to sue all involved in spreading it. Afraid, I wrote to Arrington and he assured me he'd rather goto jail than out a source.

Of course I never seriously thought the company had a case(especially against me). I just took a public link and fwded it to someone who made it big. Very different from leaking.


> I once passed on a story to TC that had one upvote on HN

The meaning of this is completely changed if you parse it like:

I once passed on a story...


I expected the TechCrunch readership to not get a little jab of humor, but here too?


It isn't funny. Arrington seems to think it is, but apparently all he's laughing at is his own lack of ethics rather than at any intended jest:

i mean, sure, we’d take the docs and deliver the tshirt. but we do have one or two other ways of getting information.


I'm in the "t-shirt was a joke" camp, but this does cause me to wonder: is this alleged screenshot also a joke?

I mean, in the context of the t-shirt thing, just how credible can Arrington's screenshot claim be, anyway?


What strikes me as worrisome is that, at least by the tone of the article, there is no possible doubt in Arrington's mind that the screenshot exists, and that it is EXACTLY what was claimed to him, and he hasn't even seen it.

I'm sure it's a somewhat thin argument, but I personally would think they'd start reserving their over-committal in the wake of the Facebook-picture-fax thing. I mean, they bought that hook, line and sinker, and that was a hoax they at least SAW.


What strikes me as worrisome is that, at least by the tone of the article, there is no possible doubt in Arrington's mind that the screenshot exists, and that it is EXACTLY what was claimed to him, and he hasn't even seen it.

This is a far better critique of TechCrunch than the "quid pro quo" angle.


Yes, it is indeed a better critique. That should have occurred to me.


I find that a little funny. By wearing the free t-shirt, wouldn't everybody know what it's you that leaked said screenshot? Unless everybody at google regularly wears techcrunch clothing, which probably isn't likely. He should probably offer something which doesn't implicitly identify his source.


I hope the shirt says, "I leaked evidence in my employer's multi-million-dollar lawsuit and all I got was this lousy t-shirt"


What lawsuit?


This is disproved by the fact that at least 10 perfectly photoshopped screenshots had to have been submitted in the first hour, and have not been posted.


Anyone HN left with a sense of humor? dranke apparently lost his.


I don't see a problem with this.


The only problem I see is it will be trivial to find the culprit, just look for the Googler wearing a TC shirt.


He'd wear it inside out.




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