back to article Ex-Microsoft intern claimed one of her fellow temps raped her. Her bosses hired him

An ex-Microsoft worker has accused the US software giant of bungling her internal complaint that a fellow employee raped her while she slept. In a letter submitted in support of an ongoing gender discrimination class-action lawsuit against Microsoft in the US state of Washington, the woman said that, in 2012, she was working …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So what did the police say?

    I see a lot of talk about what the woman thought and such, but I'm missing out on the results of her report to the police. Did the police do anything? Was a rapekit used? Did they find proof of sexual intercourse? If the police didn't do anything then I don't see what Microsoft could have done here. After all: in the end this all resulted in a "she said, he said" kind of scenario, and in our democracy you're innocent until proven guilty. Also noteworthy is that the whole thing didn't happened on the Microsoft workfloor but at her (shared) home.

    Even the article says that she was asleep and "thinks to have remembered that she was being raped". Is that enough to ruin someones career? "I think he did it, but I'm not sure"? And once again: I'm seriously missing out on what the police investigation (if any) resulted in.

    This isn't about a sexual assault on the workfloor, but instead about sexual related issues at home where both involved individuals also happened to be working for the same company. So unless the police actually got involved then I don't think there's much the company could do here.

    1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Re: So what did the police say?

      This isn't about a sexual assault on the workfloor,

      Sorta... We do not know how their intern program is set up. I would not be surprised if the accommodation was also provided and organized by Microsoft as a part of the intern program. That opens a pretty big can of worms there and then.

      Also, with police involved the standard (and quite correct) modus operandi for most HR departments is to do absolutely nothing so that the police inquiry is not prejudiced. The real question is - why the police inquiry got nowhere.

      1. fords42

        Re: So what did the police say?

        Ex Microsoft intern here. In the UK it's up to the intern to find accommodation (though many do end up in shared houses) and AFAIK it's the same in the US.

    2. hnwombat
      Flame

      Re: So what did the police say?

      The "proven guilty" standard is for criminal cases in criminal court with criminal penalties. It applies nowhere else. In civil courts, it's "preponderance of evidence", not "beyond a reasonable doubt". In a company, the threshold is even lower.

      So yes, Microsoft could have, and should have, done more. Offering to transfer her to a different department is not sufficient, nor is it appropriate (unless offered to her as a possibility to choose from). The accused should have been transferred; he, after all, was the alleged wrongdoer, not she.

      Doing so is in Microsoft's best interests-- whether there was a crime or not, she perceived one, and that would cause problems in the department. Moving someone was necessary simply from a productivity point of view. Absent convincing evidence, the transfer for the accused should not itself be punitive; it should be to another useful experience (since he was an intern), but which involved no further contact with the woman.

      And, finally: it is always men saying that there are "degrees"and "grabbing an ass is not as bad as forcible rape". I doubt the difference is so apparent to the victim. They are both equally invasive, and equally wrong. Yes, I think we should charge people grabbing an ass with rape.

      You are not the one who gets to define how bad the crime is. It's the victim that gets to decide.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: So what did the police say?

        'You are not the one who gets to define how bad the crime is. It's the victim that gets to decide.'

        No, that's the job of the courts and the lawmakers. Otherwise its just mob rule.

      2. Aqua Marina

        Re: So what did the police say?

        “The accused should have been transferred; he, after all, was the alleged wrongdoer, not she.”

        So regardless of guilt, he should be punished and be forced to change his job because allegations?

        1. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Unhappy

          Re: So what did the police say?

          "So regardless of guilt, he should be punished and be forced to change his job because allegations?"

          amazingly, this sort of thing has been happening a LOT lately...

      3. Bernard M. Orwell

        Re: So what did the police say?

        "Yes, I think we should charge people grabbing an ass with rape."

        That's surely a dangerous notion. Would you say common assault is the same as murder?

        Don't get me wrong now, grabbing ass is terribly offensive, yes, and should not be just ignored, but to equate it with the terrible act of rape is not proportional. What next? Is wolf-whistling as bad as grabbing at someone? does that make wolf-whistling rape? What about "eye rape"? (Yeah, its a thing apparently).

        Furthermore, by creating this sort of association between things you run the risk of devaluing the position of the victims of violent rape. "She was raped? oh, someone grabbed at her?", and that sets a dangerous precedent when we are already being told that most rape goes unreported because the authorities seemingly choose not to believe victims.

        1. HereIAmJH

          Re: So what did the police say?

          "Don't get me wrong now, grabbing ass is terribly offensive, yes, and should not be just ignored, but to equate it with the terrible act of rape is not proportional."

          It may not be rape, but in the US it is classified as sexual assault. Washington state defines it as Indecent Liberties. "Any touching of the sexual or other intimate parts of a person done for the purpose of gratifying sexual desire of either party or a third party."

          And BTW, if she was unconscious then in Washington state she was unable to consent to intercourse, making it second degree rape. "Victim is incapable of consent because he or she is physically helpless, mentally incapacitated or developmentally disabled."

          I'm surprised, since it was a co-worker, that there wasn't an Order of Protection that would have forced Microsoft to relocate one of them. (which would mean him, because penalizing the alleged victim opens you up to lawsuits like this)

      4. DavCrav Silver badge

        Re: So what did the police say?

        "Yes, I think we should charge people grabbing an ass with rape.

        You are not the one who gets to define how bad the crime is. It's the victim that gets to decide."

        Well you are an idiot then, Sorry, but you are. If I am seriously offended by the tailgater on the motorway yesterday (he was a complete dick, and it's a crime) I can send him to jail for 30 years for death by dangerous driving?

        Rape has a definition. Grabbing someone's arse is a crime, it's just not rape. Words have meanings. And rape is the only crime where there's even a debate that there might be more and less severe versions of it. Murder is murder, but the type of murder determines the sentence. We don't treat all thieves equally as well. The campaigners are definitely wrong on this one.

      5. Trilkhai

        Re: So what did the police say?

        And, finally: it is always men saying that there are "degrees"and "grabbing an ass is not as bad as forcible rape". I doubt the difference is so apparent to the victim. They are both equally invasive, and equally wrong.

        No, I think it's very safe to say that the vast, overwhelming majority of women out there (including me) would say that having something jammed into a bodily orifice is literally more invasive, more painful (unless the person has third-degree burns on their butt), and more psychologically damaging.

        I can definitely say that as an undersized 13-year-old girl, while I found having my butt & chest grabbed by the jocks as part of a bullying campaign was upsetting, it didn't freak me out half as much as their threats to rape me if they ever found me alone. (They weren't smart enough to threaten to do it if I told on them, or I might not have gotten the little asshats suspended.)

        1. hnwombat
          Pint

          Re: So what did the police say?

          = I can definitely say that as an undersized 13-year-old girl, while I found having my butt & chest

          = grabbed by the jocks as part of a bullying campaign was upsetting, it didn't freak me out half as

          = much as their threats to rape me if they ever found me alone. (They weren't smart enough to

          = threaten to do it if I told on them, or I might not have gotten the little asshats suspended.)

          Okay, fair, enough, I was being extreme, but to try to make a point-- men don't get to decide that "grabbing a little ass" isn't serious. It's the grabee that gets to decide. "Boys will be boys" is not acceptable, and is legally actionable.

          1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

            Re: So what did the police say?

            It's the grabee that gets to decide. "Boys will be boys" is not acceptable, and is legally actionable.

            Grabee gets to decide acceptability.

            The actual crime is defined by the law. This is valid for both the actual sexual assault on the grabee and the broken wrist of whoever dunnit if the grabee does not like it and "takes the law into her own hands"(*).

            (*)It is very easy to break wrists of people who do not know what you are doing when they are trying to grab you. Regardless of size. In fact, being little versus a Jock helps. Just go learn some aikido. It takes 6-12 months to learn it, not like you need to get to the darker belt colours to be able to do it. You can of course chose other options, but this one is the best as far as dealing with opponents that vastly outsize you. It is also the one that gets you to a point where you can defend yourself fastest.

      6. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: So what did the police say?

        I have a small issue with this , What happens when said woman , decides I don't like you so I know I will cry rape , even if the person has never even looked at you , or would not even be interested in you . But it's being used as a weapon to move you or destroy your career, This is not to detract on the REAL VICTIMS of such a heinous crime of which I would advocate for the harshest punishments one could obtain against such a perpetrator. The issue is people lie , sometimes for sympathy , sometimes for drama , sometimes just to f**k you over . With a police investigation , you can have a investigation of which even if you say look DNA evidence the question becomes ok consensual or against your will , DNA does not prove either way , so a lot them comes down to how good an actor the man or woman is , as in I was brutalised , ok so show me bruises which if present certainly lent weight to the argument that it was non consensual but still not conclusive as some woman like rough sex. Hell an ex used to love being hurt by people , so much so she actually sought out and paid people to hurt her when I refused to hurt her in the way that she wanted. People can do some really screwed up stuff , for some really screwed up reasons.

        I don't like Microsoft , even thou I have worked for them deep in the past , to me it's a awful place to work , but as a employer , what can you do ? A says B did something , B says no I diden't of course it looks certainly very odd when you start asking around and C ,D , E ,F , H ,I ,J ,K ,L ,M , N also say he did something , but in a isolated incident Where it A is the only accuser of B it becomes Archaism razor, which is the more likely , Perhaps put people in different groups move people around to avoid issues of people feeling nothing is being done , but without evidence (DATA) of something really happening or being likely to have happened it is very difficult to do something . If the person that was most likely attacked is reading this , this is not aimed at you per say , I have every sympathy for you also . All I can suggest is maybe ask around people that know this person and see if he has done this before, see if you can establish a pattern of abuse (all of which the police should have done for you , and likely tried too) In even making this accusation you have likely doomed his prospects anyway , as in the well no smoke without fire , so everyone sure your innocent we just wont leave you with female colleges alone.

        The issue and this is a real issue is that being on the end of false claims is no joke either , it can ruin you life , leaving you wanting to take your own life for the fact that people could even think that of you , the police don't help either from the point of view you KNOW it's a lie , but as far as they are concerned you get the WHY WOULD SHE LIE thrown in your face , officers insinuating your not safe to be around to family members and friends , all of which tends to lean towards nobody wants to take a chance it is true so your treated as guilty from the start , as a non guilty party your at best given a NO FURTHER ACTION , which is not a we are wrong , not we are sorry for all the stress and grief, sorry for ruining your life , it's just a we don't think we can nail you to the wall so FOR NOW !! we are not going to do anything more.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: So what did the police say?

          "I have a small issue with this , What happens when said woman , decides I don't like you so I know I will cry rape , even if the person has never even looked at you ,"

          Well, according to todays news, 2 years of your life being made hell you'll never get back and your name plastered all over the media as a rapist during all that time, and that's only if and when the evidence proving your innocence is finally disclosed to your defence team.

      7. Jonathan Schwatrz
        Stop

        Re: hnwombat Re: So what did the police say?

        Wow! Do you just hate men? Your whole post boils down to "she should be believed because she's a woman and he's an evil man"!

        "....Microsoft could have, and should have, done more...." On what basis, other than "he has a penis"? Did the police prosecute the guy? Was he ever even charged?

        ".....The accused should have been transferred; he, after all, was the alleged wrongdoer...." Amazing that you use the word alleged but do not seem to understand what it means.

        ".....whether there was a crime or not, she perceived one....." So now you want a business to make an important decision (and on one that they could be heavily sued) just because a woman "perceived" something?!?!?

        ".....Moving someone was necessary simply from a productivity point of view. Absent convincing evidence, the transfer for the accused should not itself be punitive; it should be to another useful experience (since he was an intern), but which involved no further contact with the woman....." So a woman is allowed to remove a competitor for a role and leave a stain on his professional career just because she said so? Darling, maybe you should take your pussy hat off and realise having a vagina does not give you the right to dictate the law.

        "....You are not the one who gets to define how bad the crime is. It's the victim that gets to decide." Epic fail! You are stating that there doesn't even need to be an investigation of the alleged crime, it's just automatically the worst possible offence because she's a woman and says so. TBH, women like you are the reason feminism gets such a bad name.

        1. hnwombat
          FAIL

          Re: hnwombat So what did the police say?

          @Jonathan Schwartz:

          = TBH, women like you are the reason feminism gets such a bad name.

          I'm cis-male.

          And men still don't get to decide how bad "grabbing an ass" is. The rest of your comments I'll ignore because you didn't understand the subtleties of the point that I was trying to make-- which is that Microsoft has a right and a duty to act based on suspicion. They are not a court of law. Just like Google was right to fire their jerk.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Facepalm

            Re: hnwombat So what did the police say?

            @hnwombat: "I'm cis-male.

            Jezus, no self respecting man refers to himself as cis-male, save that stuff for reddit :)

          2. Jonathan Schwatrz
            FAIL

            Re: hnwombat Re: hnwombat So what did the police say?

            "I'm cis-male...." Right! In my experience, the only people that use that term are not straight men, not unless they're hipster millennial metrosexuals looking to virtue-signal. Oh look, I can apply labels too!

            "....you didn't understand the subtleties of the point that I was trying to make....' Hmmm, it seemed your "point" was "she female, he male, therefore he must be guilty and punished, cos she said so". You have failed to provide any other argument. You definitely did not provide any form of legal argument, just an emotive one.

            "....Microsoft has a right and a duty to act based on suspicion....." No, they don't. Just take the time to ask a lawyer, they'll tell you why companies are careful not to give employees a reason to sue them. If Microsoft had transferred the guy without any corroboration of the claimed rape then they would open themselves up to being sued for defamation of character and (ironically) sexual discrimination ("we're changing your internship because you're a guy and she's a woman" - pretty clear cut case of sexual discrimination). They would at least need an HR investigation (usually by a third party) which would need to show something like a witness statement of at least intent on the guy's part. But it looks like the police investigation turned up nothing, which means Microsoft's HR probably would have turned up nothing.

            IMHO, you are either blinded by your hatred of Microsoft or have been swimming in the kool aid for far too long. Or both.

          3. Kiwi Silver badge

            Re: hnwombat So what did the police say?

            I'm cis-male.

            No, you're not. You're nothing more than a disgusting piece of shit.

            The rest of your comments I'll ignore because you didn't understand the subtleties of the point that I was trying to make--

            You tried to equate rape with "ass grabbing". How dare you try and lecture someone else!

            which is that Microsoft has a right and a duty to act based on suspicion.

            No one outside of the police and the courts has such a duty without damned good evidence and extremely good reason. The alleged victim wasn't willing to go elsewhere so SHE didn't consider it bad enough to take up an opportunity elsewhere, so why should the other person be moved on mere allegation of one person?

      8. Cynic_999 Silver badge

        Re: So what did the police say?

        "

        You are not the one who gets to define how bad the crime is. It's the victim that gets to decide.

        "

        OK, I allege that your entire post was meant as an horrific personal attack on me. As I have made the allegation, by your rules action must now be taken against you you. And as I get to decide how bad your crime was, I say that what you did to me in your post was far worse than murder. You will therefore happily submit to a life sentence.

      9. PNGuinn
        Thumb Down

        Re: So what did the police say? @ hnwombat

        "And, finally: it is always men saying that there are "degrees"and "grabbing an ass is not as bad as forcible rape". I doubt the difference is so apparent to the victim. They are both equally invasive, and equally wrong. Yes, I think we should charge people grabbing an ass with rape."

        No No NO.

        "Grabbing an ass" is generally NOT acceptable behaviour - from the context it's a sexual assault, possibly a serious sexual assault. But no way is it "invasive" in the sense that rape is "Invasive" All sexual assault should be punished severely if proven.

        It's NOT rape. Rape is one of the most vile crimes a man can commit, and because of that the burden of proof is necessarily high. Some would say, and I would agree, that the ultimate penalty should be available to the courts for rape.

        Rape is NOT a trivial matter. To equate it to "Grabbing as ass" IS to trivialise it, and is a vile insult to rape victims.

        Sorry, downvoted.

      10. Kiwi Silver badge

        Re: So what did the police say?

        And, finally: it is always men saying that there are "degrees"and "grabbing an ass is not as bad as forcible rape". I doubt the difference is so apparent to the victim. They are both equally invasive, and equally wrong. Yes, I think we should charge people grabbing an ass with rape.

        Speaking as a victim, YOU ARE ONE SICK FUCKING INDIVIDUAL if you think they're even remotely close to the same thing.

        Both wrong? Yes. Both the same? Get some brains. How fucking DARE you try to equate those two things

        How DARE you try to minimise the effects that actual rape has on a person by equating it with "grabbing an ass". Go to a rape crisis centre, talk to the victims there. If they let you live come back and tell us if it's still the same.

        You are not the one who gets to define how bad the crime is. It's the victim that gets to decide.

        Read your own words you WORTHLESS FUCKING PIECE OF FUCKING SHIT CUNT!

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So what did the police say?

      “I don't think there's much the company could do here”

      You clearly don’t get it. If ever the word “rape” is used in an allegation, then it must be true. Facts should never get in the way of a good lynching. Even if it went to trial and a jury of his peers declared him not guilty.... well, it’s rape, he’s a man. He must have done it. Sack him, castrate him and put him on the sex offenders register for life.

    4. Trilkhai

      Re: So what did the police say?

      While I favor letting the police handle matters, a couple of things suggest to me that MS might have mishandled this...

      --In the statement from MS that El Reg quoted, they mention meeting with her, but nothing about talking to him or whoever else was at the shared living space to get a feel for how realistic her claims were (if only to avoid hiring a guy that might be a problem for other employees), suggesting they might've been blowing her off.

      -- She was told that if she got a restraining order, she would be the one forced to change departments, apparently at some loss to her career based on her reaction. That seems a bit...off.

      -- Microsoft says they "encouraged her" to talk with law enforcement, but AFAIK the cops would've been contacted when the hospital did the 'rape-kit' thing that day. That sounds a bit too much like MS Sent a one-size-fits-all CYA statement, not one specific to that incident.

      It seems to me like these days, it doesn't usually take much for somebody to lose their job over even an accusation of perfectly-legal but "inappropriate" behavior. I imagine that something like "this co-guy raped me at a shared employee's place; I had the hospital do a rape kit, cops have been alerted" would be parallel to something a company would at least want to look into.

    5. kain preacher Silver badge

      Re: So what did the police say?

      The charges were dropped.

  2. jake Silver badge

    "seriously sexually assaulted"

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't all sexual assault serious?

    1. DougS Silver badge

      Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

      Well obviously there are degrees. Forcible rape is much more serious than a quick grab of the ass.

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

        a quick grab of the ass is still not very chivalrous. but yeah, "degrees".

        men who grab women's asses without permission need some form of appropriate punishment, though. A good punch in the face (from the woman) oughta do it. [which is why I don't go around grabbing women's asses without permission]

        1. jake Silver badge

          Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

          bombastic bob wrote "A good punch in the face (from the woman) oughta do it. [which is why I don't go around grabbing women's asses without permission]"

          Oh. Now I see why the long winded reply ... the only thing stopping you from grabbing ass is that you might get punched. Is that from experience? Methinks thou doth protest too much.

        2. Voland's right hand Silver badge

          Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

          A good punch in the face (from the woman) oughta do it.

          USAsian... Bless him.

          You would have gotten anything from a spiked heel in the family jewels to a broken wrist where I grew up. With EVERYONE applauding the girl - one of the reasons why very few people even dared consider that if they thought it will be unwelcome.

      2. jake Silver badge

        Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

        But DougS, the ass grab is still assault, and thus serious, no?

        1. DavCrav Silver badge

          Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

          "But DougS, the ass grab is still assault, and thus serious, no?"

          I thought assault like that was a misdemeanor in the US, and hence not serious by definition?

          1. jake Silver badge

            Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

            I should add that "assault" is the threat of violence or an attempt at violence, even if physical violence does not occur; whereas "battery" is the follow-up physical violence. Saying "I'm going to beat you up at lunch time" is assault. Taking a swing at you and missing is also assault. Actually beating you up is battery.

            Not sure what this means WRT the original article.

        2. This post has been deleted by its author

      3. Charlie Clark Silver badge

        Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

        a quick grab of the ass

        Surely, that would be theft? I want my donkey back!

        Grabbing someone may be assault but it isn't sexual assault. It's only in the workplace where this would be treated as sexual harassment: different situation, different code.

        1. HereIAmJH

          Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

          "Grabbing someone may be assault but it isn't sexual assault. It's only in the workplace where this would be treated as sexual harassment: different situation, different code."

          You're confusing things. Sexual assault and sexual harassment are different. In general, in the US, offensive touching of a sexual nature is considered Sexual Assault. If you grab my arm in a sexual manner, it's sexual assault. If you do the same in a non-sexual manner it would be battery.

          Some examples;

          You meet a woman at a club and you grab her arm to pull her in to kiss her. Sexual assault.

          A woman cuts in front of you in line at the grocery store so you grab her arm. Battery.

          Both could be without malice, but they could still get you arrested, depending on the situation.

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Childcatcher

      Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

      "isn't all sexual assault serious"

      yes, and it should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, EVERY time.

      But if no charges were ever filed, and/or no lawsuit was ever filed against the alleged perpetrator, then it's "heresay" as far as I'm concerned.

      Microsoft is NOT a police department. And yes, sometimes women DO make this kind of crap up.

      But if the guy really DID rape her while unconscious, he deserves a nice extended stay at the Iron Bar Hotel. And the victim's responsibility to society is to MAKE SURE THIS HAPPENS!!!

      icon, because we SHOULD "think of the children". They need a proper example of how to deal with crime.

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

        Bob, there is no "but". I asked a simple question with a simple yes/no answer. Why do you feel the need for a long winded reply?

        1. Kiwi Silver badge

          Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

          Bob, there is no "but". I asked a simple question with a simple yes/no answer. Why do you feel the need for a long winded reply?

          Because it's not a simple question?

          I've had male and female playfully grab at parts of me because they thought it was something I'd enjoy - they weren't all wrong but they weren't all right either. The ones that got it right were perfectly fine legally, the ones who got it wrong had strayed into sexual assault. 3 of us playfighting, one my boyfriend one a very horny guy but NOT mine - my BF grabs a handful of arse, perfectly acceptable and part of the fun. The other guy - not acceptable, he's told no, still we had a fun time. But I could've had him charged with sexual assault because it was not welcome and not asked, but he did make the assumption it was OK and was expecting a lot more than night (boy was he disappointed!)

          At that end of the scale, it's not particularly serious especially not from intent (where the guy honestly believed it would be ok and that belief wasn't from a "I'm entitled" but "I thought you'd like it, sorry").

          The other end of the scale. Well, I don't think I could get a coherent sentence out here. Rape is very serious, forced sexual assault may or may not be as serious (and often the effects on the victim can outweigh the intent of the attacker), something done out of playfulness where reciprocation or enjoyment is expected is not nearly as serious.

      2. katrinab Silver badge

        Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

        "And yes, sometimes women DO make this kind of crap up."

        Although instances of this happening are far lower than for any other type of offence.

        A man is far more likely to be raped himself than be accused of rape, and that is counting all accusations of rape regardless of whether they are true or not.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

      “all sexual assault serious?”

      Factual sexual assault is yes.

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

        AC, I wasn't referring to a specific case. I was referring to the wording of the article. Please try to read for content. Ta.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "seriously sexually assaulted"

          @ Jake "Please try to read for content. Ta."

          I suggest you take your own advice and re-read my post. I actually wholeheartedly agreed with you with added emphasis on my part.

          Ta

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So a woman makes a claim against a man, and, to judge from the headline, El Reg's position is outrage that that he was hired anyway?

  4. Louis Schreurs BEng

    trending

  5. TonyJ Silver badge

    I don't know...

    ...there seem to be several issues here.

    Firstly, I don't know if the same is true of our US cousins but here in the UK, women that make a rape charge have their identity protected but the accused men don't. And, as mentioned before, women can and do lie (I am not suggesting she lied, by the way - just a generalisation) but even if found not guilty that kind of mud sticks

    That should change. The identities of both should be protected until one of them is found either guilty of assault/rape or found to be lying.

    Secondly, there's the big question mark over why the police felt there was no charge to answer to - now assuming that they did everything correctly, then that rather suggests there was no rape.

    However, I believe that Microsoft should have transferred both of them. Not as a punishment in any way but to be seen to be acting properly to protect both individuals - moving desks doesn't seem to be enough.

    Dunno...it just feels like there are key items missing in the story.

    1. 's water music Silver badge

      Re: I don't know...

      assuming that they [police] did everything correctly

      I don't think that is an assumption that is in any way safe to make

    2. Kristian Walsh

      Re: I don't know...

      Microsoft screwed up here, and badly. You're right - the best choice would have been to move both employees, so that they're not meeting each other every day. If the accusation was false, moving both would reduce the accuser's ability to bully the accused; if it was true, being apart would prevent problems at a subsequent trial ("but you spoke with my client regularly in your office? Surely you could not have been as traumatised as you claim ...").

      Your question about anonymity has a local answer if you want to look into it further: In Irish law, accused rapists remain anonymous unless convicted, on the grounds that knowing identity of the accused can easily allow identification of the victim (remember that most victims of rape know their attacker). However, this provision often means that convicted rapists are not named either, because in many situations, doing so would remove the victim's anonymity. It's common here for victims to renounce their right to anonymity after a conviction is secured, just to ensure that their attacker is named.

      But the Irish law primarily exists to protect the victim, not the accused. The risk of false accusation isn't significant, because the overwhelming number of charges of rape are based on real attacks. To hear some people talking about it, you'd swear every second accusation was malicious, but the FBI's figures in the US put the false claim rate at just under 2% - the same level as for other crimes (of all classes). Bear in mind that this 2% figure is of those cases where a police complaint is made- there are many victims of physical assault who cannot bring themselves to make an official complaint - the reporting rate for rape is believed to be as low as 12%.

      ... It's also sad to see some regular and vehemently anti-Microsoft commenters lining up to support the company's cack-handed actions in this case. I guess they can overlook "pure evil" when it has the side-effect of keeping uppity wimmen out of a "real man's industry".

      1. TonyJ Silver badge

        Re: I don't know...

        Here's a thing about your 2% figure though.

        A quick Google took me to a Guardian article starting that official figures listed 23,851 reported cases in 2015/16 in the UK and Northern Ireland.

        At 2% that is just short of 500 falsely accused.

        So that's potentially 500 men who had their lives utterly ruined whilst the accusers not only get off scot free but usually also get to remain anonymous.

        All I am calling for is equality in the system that means until a conviction is secured, both parties by law have to remain anonymous unless there are very good reasons not to (and that'd be for the courts to decide). In either case, post-conviction the guilty party should be named and the victim given the opportunity to remain or waive their anonymity as they see fit.

        I still just feel there are key aspects to the story missing. Why, for example, has it taken 5 years to get to this? Why did the police find no crime had been committed?

        As I originally said, MS should have moved them both for the very reasons you said as well as to be seen to be impartial such as not to prejudice the case. Just moving a desk was woefully poor action.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I don't know...

          'Why, for example, has it taken 5 years to get to this?'

          Sexual assault is the current big money maker being whipped up by the US media and plastered all over TV radio and the papers day after day.

          Due process didn't get the desired result 5 years ago, so now while the media is in the middle of a frenzy regarding Hollywood assaults they are going for trial by public opinion instead.

          Yes I'm a cynic.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I don't know...

          As the article is written...If the police report is missing and no other proof is there regarding the complain...then it is just a woman saying "I complained and they didn't do what I wanted." In my experience...this is rarely an honest complain.

          If you read between the lines she did not want him to be hired, so, is it rape or vengeance?

          I have very serious doubts....she is not complaining about him not being prosecuted but rather that he was hired.... Which victim of rape doesn't want his rapist to be put behind bars?

          Going even further, sexual discrimination? is there a differente set of rules in there for men and women, highly unlikely.

      2. Jonathan Schwatrz
        Stop

        Re: Kristian Walsh Re: I don't know...

        "........ It's also sad to see some regular and vehemently anti-Microsoft commenters lining up to support the company's cack-handed actions in this case. I guess they can overlook "pure evil" when it has the side-effect of keeping uppity wimmen out of a "real man's industry"." What, so we have to totally ignore the law and forget about innocent unless proven guilty, just because you'll accuse us of being sexist pigs if we don't? Wow, what a threat! Sorry, darling, you can label away, I'll just ignore you. As someone that has worked in the industry for decades, who has recruited women on the value of what they brought to the busines, I don't find your threat that compelling. If anything, your vacuous name-calling is simply setting back the cause of feminism by highlighting the illogicality and unprofessional nature of your demands.

        1. Kristian Walsh

          Re: Kristian Walsh I don't know...

          I demanded nothing, and by the dismissive tone of your response, I'm guessing you think I'm female. Guess again (hint: I've one more than Adolf Hitler, according to the once-popular song)

          I also never said the accused was guilty, nor did I suggest that accused persons should be considered guilty for certain crimes. He was accused, not convicted, and yes the alleged victim also could have been lying (statistically, though that is just as unlikely as a report of him stealing from her being a lie). However, leaving two employees together who are in such serious conflict with each other is disgraceful behaviour towards whichever of them is the wronged party.

          That was my point: idiotic HR practices that exacerbated an already bad situation between two employees.

          Microsoft's response in this case was completely wrong for a situation where one employee has accused another of assaulting them. If it helps clear the mental fog, imagine one male intern accusing another male intern of physical assault. Would you have dealt with it this way if the two interns were your direct reports?

          But some commenters on this haven't been able to look beyond "woman accuses man of rape", and frame this as another assault on "men's rights" and gone straight to the standard knee-jerk reaction, pausing only to mentally add "(and she was probably lying)" along the way, despite evidence that shows false rape claims to be as rare as false theft or physical assault claims.

          That reaction also completely ignores the fact that the woman's specific complaint here wasn't about being raped - that's a criminal matter. Her complaint was about how badly her employer has handled the situation. The strong correlation between those commenters standing up to defend Microsoft for this idiocy and those commenters who normally despise Microsoft and all its works was amusing.

          Darling.

          1. This post has been deleted by its author

          2. Kiwi Silver badge

            Re: Kristian Walsh I don't know...

            He was accused, not convicted, and yes the alleged victim also could have been lying (statistically, though that is just as unlikely as a report of him stealing from her being a lie).

            I think you'll find that statistically people exaggerate wrong done to them quite a lot. You'll probably also find that there are a high number of men accused of raping women where the evidence including DNA just doesn't stack up. Sadly, often the police seem to work on the view of "he was accused therefore he is guilty" and take efforts to make sure they're convicted, even to the point of "there's no DNA evidence nor physical evidence of any penetration let alone forced" being hidden from the defence/jury. Some of that (maybe the majority) is from the fear of accusing a victim of lying and being found that the victim was telling the truth.

            People lie against their enemies all the time. It's human nature.

            Would you have dealt with it this way if the two interns were your direct reports?

            I would've independently spoken to each, given them an opportunity to move to another department or an offer of one taking leave while it was investigated. If neither wanted to move I would not have forced them to unless the issue was impacting others.

            However, leaving two employees together who are in such serious conflict with each other is disgraceful behaviour towards whichever of them is the wronged party.

            I expect/assume they were both given the chance to move. Neither of them felt strongly enough about it. That is quite strong evidence that she was lying, she did not feel threatened enough to want to work in another department and her story wasn't credible enough to force him to move even as a precaution.

            In other companies, people can be given a choice if the firm is large enough, and they can take it upon themselves to get a job elsewhere or just plain quit if the firm isn't large enough to have other departments, Often in a conflict there are two sides, and the "wronged" side may have mental issues that cloud their judgement - I have a friend whose neighbour has been accusing him of harassing her among other things. His "harassment" initially consisted of a friendly greeting whenever they were in speaking distance, but now simply consists of if she's outside checking her mail box when he's going to work then he's picking that time to travel just because he knows it upsets her - not because he's had an 8:30am start for the past 5 years. To take your line, he should move out of his home because she felt wrong, and maybe the thing that got her upset really happened.

            Adults should be able to sort their differences out. If they can't, they should be able to put them aside enough to work together. In a case of rape then while police are investigating there should be some grounds given (even perhaps letting one take time off on full pay should they choose) for one party to leave, but you simply cannot force an accused person to do something without a very good reason; it's both immoral, abusive, and in many jurisdictions plain illegal. If the accuser doesn't want to move or take a break, that suggests that his/her feelings in the matter aren't that strong.

            I've worked in places where people hated each other passionately, and if they ever met in the street after work you could expect one of them would be dying. But they were professional enough to put their differences aside enough to get their jobs done and to not let their personal bitter hatred of each other (actually IIRC it was just one hater, one upset because they could never find out what the problem was) affect performance. That's what adults do.

            If both want to stay, and it's not having a significant impact on the rest of the staff or the company as a whole, then leaving them together is the right thing to do.

            Her complaint was about how badly her employer has handled the situation.

            I read the article with that bit of joy at the sort of hate I could lump on MS because of how badly they'd done things. I see instead that they appeared to have acted in the right manner. The article was disappointing because I could not use it to further justify my dislike of (almost) all things MS. Instead I was in a position to bite back some of my hatred and acknowledge their apparent ability to actually get things right from time to time.

            The strong correlation between those commenters standing up to defend Microsoft for this idiocy and those commenters who normally despise Microsoft and all its works was amusing.

            It's weird that you see my defending MS for doing the right thing in this case and giving them shit for doing the wrong thing in other cases is something strange to you. Are you not familiar with the concepts of "credit where credit is due"? When your children do the right thing, do you punish them because in the past they've done wrong and you must treat them in a consistent manner? If a friend wrongs you today, but is friendly towards you tomorrow (and perhaps they believed the "wrong" you felt was actually the right thing), do you treat them as if they're still doing bad things to you?

            Deal with situations and people on their merits, not on what happened in a completely different situation.

            And perhaps that even their most passionate haters (I think I saw even BB give them credit for how they managed this!) are saying they got this right should tell you something about whether or not MS did the right thing.

          3. Jonathan Schwatrz
            FAIL

            Re: Kristian Walsh Re: Kristian Walsh I don't know...

            ".....I'm guessing you think I'm female. Guess again....." Just cruel parents then?

            ".....I also never said the accused was guilty, nor did I suggest that accused persons should be considered guilty for certain crimes......" But you wanted Microsoft to treat him as if he was considered guilty of the crime.

            ".....However, leaving two employees together who are in such serious conflict with each other is disgraceful behaviour towards whichever of them is the wronged party....." But your whole approach is it doesn't matter who the guilty party is, him for rape or her for lying, he should automatically be the one punished because he is a he.

            ".... Her complaint was about how badly her employer has handled the situation....." Her complaint was that Microsoft didn't do what she wanted, without actually specifying why Microsoft should have other than "I have a vagina".

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Timing is everything.

    Why has this claim only surfaced in a lawsuit for equal pay as an example of discrimination against women when it isn't even related to the lawsuit about pay and promotions?

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    There an awful lot of this sort of J'Accuse going around at the moment and it's making society look like revolutionary France complete with Robespierre, it appears to be quite fashionable.

    I always thought innocent until proven guilty, has the alleged assailant been convicted of the alleged crime ?

    I do note possibly alcohol was involved and one must always take this into consideration as people can and do completely change personality under it's influence and the next day deny their behaviour, I'm not saying this is an excuse but must be in the minds of those weighing the facts.

    Beyond reasonable doubt so we need good evidence to tar and feather someone.

    1. Francis Boyle Silver badge

      History Fail

      Ironically Zola's J'acuse resulted in exoneration of Dreyfus and the exposure of systematic anti-semitism in the French establishment. I don't think the historical parallels are what you think they are.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Meanwhile on Other News

    Rape trial ceased as the victim is revealed to actually pestered him for sex, but only after he had spend almost two years on bail.

    Here are a few quotes:

    Mr Allan's lawyers were denied access to the woman's telephone records after police insisted there was nothing of interest for the defence or prosecution.

    She also told her friends that she enjoyed sex with him and even spoke about her fantasies of having violent sex and being raped by him.

    After the trial collapsed Mr Allan, a criminology student, told The Times: 'I can't explain the mental torture of the past two years. I feel betrayed by the system which I had believed would do the right thing — the system I want to work in.'

    His mother Lorraine Allan, 46, told the paper: 'In the current climate, in these sorts of cases, you are guilty until you can prove you are innocent.'

    Back to this article, this is why I prefer not putting a line between victims/predators until real evidences and proofs, including any police obstruction.

    AC for obvious reason.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Meanwhile on Other News

      >Mr Allan's lawyers....

      Will we someone named and prosecuted for wasting police time ?

      I doubt it.

      1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

        Re: Meanwhile on Other News

        Will we someone named and prosecuted for wasting police time ?

        No because it was the police which screwed up the evidence. I have yet to see a case where the police has prosecuted itself for ruining someone's life.

        1. Adam 52 Silver badge

          Re: Meanwhile on Other News

          "No because it was the police which screwed up the evidence"

          Whilst that does sound likely, we're not sure yet. My reading is that he went "no comment" during police interview so nobody checked the records prior to charge. CPS then decided there was enough evidence (and CPS are under pressure to charge in rape cases). Once it came to trial the defense raised the issue, and then chaos broke out.

          As I've said before going "no comment" often does prolong things.

          He was also charged with 12 counts. So there's a whole world of questions around how on earth he was in a position to commit 12 counts.

          Of course if he had been guilty and was released pending investigation and raped again, there would still be anti police headlines, so the met were in a no-win from the start.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Meanwhile on Other News

            @Adam 52: 'My reading is that he went "no comment" during police interview'

            Do you have any evidence for that statement. My reading is that the CPS has leaned on the evidence on a number of cases and in at least one case fabricated (by slowing down) video evidence:

            CPS criticized improper rape charges against teacher

            The case of Mark Pearson

            Judge condemns Crown Prosecution Service for pursuing sex case

            1. Adam 52 Silver badge

              Re: Meanwhile on Other News

              Not sure what the connection is to the quote, but if you're suggesting malice then I don't see any real evidence of corruption in those links (haven't read the Daily Mail one, 'cos I wouldn't trust the Daily Mail even to report a judge accurately).

              In Pearson it's likely just a cock up somewhere between the CCTV room and court, I'd guess by whoever wrote the CCTV out in the first place since after that there will be a chain of evidence.

              In Reed it's a he said/she said case, matched to what looks like a botched initial investigation. When considering these things it's helpful to understand just how little resource the initial response would have had and how busy on other calls they would be. And remember what I've said before about the easiest way to dispose of a case being CPS referral, even if the investigator thinks it's groundless.

              Some context around the political situation: https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/mar/12/rape-cps-police-prosecutors

              www.thetimes.co.uk/article/overworked-cps-rape-units-unable-to-investigate-crimes

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Holmes

                Re: Meanwhile on Other News

                @Adam: "52 Not sure what the connection is to the quote

                I asked for evidence for your assertion that the main impetus for the CPS going ahead with the prosecution was that the defendant went no comment during the police interview. I forwarded an alternative scenario as this prosecution being part of a pattern of malicious prosecution on behalf of the CPS.

                The video presented to the court being altered by the CPS, in such a manner as to show the defendant (Pearson) pausing as if to engage in rubbing up against the woman. Such alteration by the CPS being fraudulently presented to the court. Is it clear now?

  9. TonyJ Silver badge

    "...Mr Allan's lawyers were denied access to the woman's telephone records after police insisted there was nothing of interest for the defence or prosecution..."

    Nice to know they were doing there jobs there, then. "Nothing to see here...move along".

    When can we expect to see them on trial for this then? What? Never? Oh...

  10. ExpertSkeptic

    False allegations made by intelligent high-functioning employable delusional fantasists

    The UK is currently awash in false allegations of rape, many of which result in innocent men being imprisoned or left on "police bail" for many years.

    I speak as somebody with experience of being accused of dozens of counts of rape and related offences by an organisation representing a co-worker. The case was never pursued very far by the police because (i) the co-worker herself never signed a document accusing me, leaving it up to a SJW "rape victim support worker" from a national charity to pursue the case; (ii) the co-worker was a delusional fantasist who had received a diagnosis of borderline personality disorder and had been hospitalised twice because of illnesses and crises resulting from, or constituting part of, the disorder, including the compulsive and impulsive making of false allegations of victimhood including but not restricted to sexual offences, and psychosis regarding rape fantasies becoming confused with reality; (iii) the police had a very large historical dossier of false allegations made by my co-worker regarding previous employers. Contrariwise, I had already filed complaints with the police citing stalking and harassment by the co-worker against me and previous co-workers, but pointing out that she did suffer episodic amnesic paranoid ideation resulting in false allegations against myself and others. She eventually half-accepted that she suffered "blackouts" and "false memories" and did not herself pursue the matter through the police or by civil litigation and so the police and I considered the matter closed. The company, very small, ceased trading.

    However, the matter was re-opened years later when, having changed employment from IT into work requiring police checks and "criminal record" checks and vetting under the UK "Vetting and Barring System", informally known as "Bichard checks". I was hired, worked for a time, then suspended and ultimately dismissed simply because my employer had been informed that "allegations from decades previously had been placed by a rape support organisation, had been investigated and found false". My employer considered that the fact that an organisation had made an allegation sufficient ground to dismiss me from work, which might bring me into contact with children (which is why the Bichard checks were made, retrospectively), even though I was never even charged and the police had satisfied themselves that I had committed no offence. I took legal advice and decided I could not afford to challenge this decision as it would have been an expensive trail-blazing case to test Bichard Law. The matter was never fully resolved and rumbles on years later!

    IMHO the main issue in the UK is the failure of "the system" when it has to deal with delusional fantasists and their interaction with mental health services, police, employers who require police checks, and victim support organisations. Currently all these are under intense pressure from victim support organisations to treat all allegations as substantially true and are fearful of the response should they suggest that rape and similar allegations are false.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: False allegations made by intelligent high-functioning employable delusional fantasists

      Have you any empirical evidence for the 'awash' with false accusations statement? I would suggest not.

      1. ExpertSkeptic

        Re: False allegations made by intelligent high-functioning employable delusional fantasists

        Here are a hundred to start with.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: False allegations made by intelligent high-functioning employable delusional fantasists

        >Have you any empirical evidence for the 'awash' with false accusations statement? I would suggest not.

        Don't assume there aren't vindictive, manipulative and mentally unhinged women out there who would use a rape allegation to get money, sympathy or revenge for some perceived slight.

        Just pray it doesn't happen to you and if it does there are people like me on the jury with an open mind who isn't going to convict you without thinking very hard about it. Best of luck removing that stain from your character and rebuilding your life.

        The ones who make false allegations give the genuine cases a bad name.

      3. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Meh

        Re: False allegations made by intelligent high-functioning employable delusional fantasists

        @AC

        "Have you any empirical evidence for the 'awash' with false accusations statement"

        YOU apparently want to remain anonymous. Maybe the rest of us, who are NOT anonymous, would like to NOT divulge our personal life details in this forum, and have them snarked over and downvoted by the "Howler Monkeys". K-thx.

        1. Sandtitz Silver badge
          Holmes

          Re: False allegations made by intelligent high-functioning employable delusional fantasists

          "YOU apparently want to remain anonymous. Maybe the rest of us, who are NOT anonymous, would like to NOT divulge our personal life details in this forum,"

          Sound advice, but "Bombastic Bob" is about as anonymous as say, "Big John". Unless you are actually that Google hit #1, a retired theatrical wrestler?!

          The difference with ACs and your nom de plume is the possibility of profiling by browsing your posting history. A clewer algorithm could eventually deduce your identity - possible much quicker if you're using the same unique pen name in other forums as well. You could say that people are forming opinions of writers here (you're that FLATSO FUGLY geezer!), but that sort of 'profiling' doesn't try to identify anyone.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Perhaps he was just trying to apply a critical update at an inopportune time...

    ...you know, like Windows 10 does.

  12. Bucky 2

    Just because someone says a crime has been committed doesn't mean a crime has been committed. Even if -- perhaps especially if -- the alleged crime is especially horrible. And especially if there is social capital to be gained by the accusation.

    I don't want to be known as being soft on witchcraft. But if Mary Proctor is alleged to be sending her spirit out in the form of a yellow bird, and only Abigail can see it, it's Abigail that I prefer to doubt.

  13. HmmmYes Silver badge

    The alledged attack took place outside of the company.

    All that MS could do would be seperate the people involved until the investigtion completes.

    As a manager id not want to be sat in a meeting room with a bunch of hungover interns asking them what had happened on Saturday night - its not my fucking job.

    Im at a loss to explain why a person should expect a company to manage their life.

  14. Roger Mew

    Its not just clients that MS are screwing

    What a surprise, it is not just clients that MS are screwing, but also staff. I do feel sorry for the girl but she really should be allowed to have the guy moved and not her. Of course there is another thought, get the women in the office to get him, debag him and then 1 by one all shag his silly arse with a dildo. Perhaps a photo on the office wall of his arse about to be shagged with a dildo may focus his mind!

  15. Brian Allan 1

    "At the end of the evening, the woman had passed out in the basement of a shared home where her colleague was staying, and woke, naked, with flashbacks of being “forcibly penetrated" by her coworker, according to the letter."

    So, what really happened!? It seems to be all a blur. Did she consent? Was she raped? Hell, no one knows what happened...

    1. Francis Boyle Silver badge

      If she had passed and was penetrated forcibly or otherwise, then yes, she was raped. See: Turner, Brock.

      1. Jonathan Schwatrz
        Facepalm

        Re: Francis Boyle

        "If she had passed and was penetrated...." Well, surely that would be necrophilia then?

      2. Kiwi Silver badge

        If she had passed and was penetrated forcibly or otherwise, then yes, she was raped.

        What if, during her inebriated state, she led the guy to believe that she was keen on sex?

        What if, during her inebriated state, she only imagined him when in fact it was someone else?

  16. CFtheNonPartisan

    Without reference to the case in point, how many companies have ever freely said they don't give a stuff about sexual harassment, rape, or anything else they should have a moral compass about. They are always 100% concerned and proactive according to them, except when they are not.

  17. Hans 1 Silver badge
    Meh

    In her letter, revealed to the court, the woman said Microsoft bosses told her that if she obtained and wanted to enforce a restraining order against her alleged rapist, she would have to change departments, something the woman was not willing to do. The tech giant did, however, move the man's desk away from hers.?

    This is wrong, both should be moved.

    Now, in this story, she went to the hospital, they probably did a rape kit on her which was inconclusive, obviously because otherwise the bloke would have been had. Worst that happened is he stuck his finger up her, which is hard to prove yet is considered rape where I live (France) ... rape is unwanted penetration.

    She claims she passed out, maybe he asked her and she consented but cannot remember, I dunno, maybe he undressed her with the intention of raping her and she woke, again, I dunno.

    As it stands, she accuses him of undressing her, has faded memories of him raping her ... who says she did not undress herself, again, I do not know, I was not there under the influence of something, incapacitated ... don't get yourself in a position where you are incapacitated, and if you are, don't blame others for it.

    I am all for going after rapists, here, however, she does not really have a case.

    Then again, I would never f* a USian or Swedish woman without written consent.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This sort of thing makes me ever so careful at work

    I work in an engineering company which, unfortunately, makes the male:female ratio about 9:1 except in sales and admin where ours about 7:3.

    In recent times I've become very careful to keep a safe distance from female staff, whether it's chatting in the kitchen area or in meetings. It'd be impossible to have a rule of thumb to never go into a meeting room where there's just one woman because there are so few.

    As for following someone through external areas (e.g. getting in a lift with them, following them through the door to the toilets), going to the car park just the two of us, that's a definite no.

    On the one hand, it protects me, but if many other men do the same, it will surely make the workplace feel even more hostile to women in a male dominated environment?

    1. MarkW99

      Re: This sort of thing makes me ever so careful at work

      Don't worry pal. Just keep your hands to yourself, ease up on the smutty jokes, smile at everyone and you'll be fine.

  19. MarkW99

    Not exactly Maigret

    So she was asleep and yet she has flashbacks about what she saw? Her nakedness is unexplained yet she is certain about consent or lack of it? I can see why she doesn't seem to have got very far with the police or Microsoft. Maybe she does have a case, but it is easy to see why wiser, older people may have simply tutted, shaken their heads and said "let's move on".

  20. ProgrammerForHire

    Drunken behavior is acceptable ?

    >At the end of night the woman passed out in a basement

    I would fire them both

    1. Kiwi Silver badge
      WTF?

      Re: Drunken behavior is acceptable ?

      >At the end of night the woman passed out in a basement

      I would fire them both

      On what grounds?

      1. ProgrammerForHire

        Re: Drunken behavior is acceptable ?

        On the grounds that they are alcoholics and try to involve the company in the next media scandal. You can find reasons if you want to fire someone

        1. Kiwi Silver badge

          Re: Drunken behavior is acceptable ?

          On the grounds that they are alcoholics and try to involve the company in the next media scandal. You can find reasons if you want to fire someone

          On those grounds they'd sue you for discrimination. Have you not noticed the number of media scandals coming from MS in recent years? And given some of the decisions made, SN is probably doing a LOT worse than alcohol at times! What of Ballmer's rants, throwing stuff around the office, throwing chairs at people (some would call that an "attempted assault with a deadly weapon" (I call it "someone with anger and impulse issues had a tanty")) and so on?

          Although your next post does make the point that they're temps - they're interns so not sure if there's much difference or not (a horrible system, a year's work from someone without paying them a cent? Talk about "land of the free! - not so much "One nation under God" because He says "Don't muzzle an ox while it's treading out the grain") - but if they were real workers then firing them for something done out of hours and off the premises is pretty hard to get away with in countries with strong labour laws. Also... I don't think there was anything to say the guy himself was drunk, so you'd be paying for his great-grandkids' college fund AND be working for him by the time he's done suing.

          1. ProgrammerForHire

            Re: Drunken behavior is acceptable ?

            As far as I know, temps get paid. I might be wrong, never had the pleasure.

            So, are you telling me, you would REALLY hire someone that gets drunk and passes out in a basement ?

            As for the guy, yeah, he is what they call, collateral damage

            1. Kiwi Silver badge
              Facepalm

              Re: Drunken behavior is acceptable ?

              As far as I know, temps get paid. I might be wrong, never had the pleasure.

              So you've never worked a day in your life? Figures.

              So, are you telling me, you would REALLY hire someone that gets drunk and passes out in a basement ?

              Why shouldn't I hire them if they're the best candidate for the job? What they do on their own time is none of my business.

              It's outside of work hours, not on work premises, how is it any of my business unless they're showing up to work drunk? If they're showing up drunk they get sent away to sober up and when they get back they get spoken too and if necessary a verbal warning. Then another verbal, then 1st and 2nd written warnings, then counselling.... Eventually they get fired if they make a habit of it. Unless they actually (not "possibly" or "might have done") put someone at risk, in which case it can be straight to written warning time.

              Nothing in the article suggests it was a regular thing, so no reason for the boss to take an interest in it.

              As for the guy, yeah, he is what they call, collateral damage

              No, the children of the company's owner are "collateral damage". If someone was to be fired or could prove they were not hired for the reasons you give, in many places around the world they'd be able to take you to court for illegal discrimination among other things. If your company is small enough to not be able to pay the fines or awarded damages, you're out of a job - and quite rightly so.

              If he was to be fired on the basis of an unfounded accusation, he would've been able to take MS to court and, being in the US, could've been awarded a great many millions.

              I'm guessing you're going to be "programmer for hire" for a very long time. As much as I dislike alcohol I'd happily hire someone who can get the job done. Your attitude towards other people's private lives, however, would be a significant ongoing disruption to the rest of the workforce and no matter how good a programmer you are, you'd be stopping others doing their jobs, clearly show an inability to be part of a "team" and leave your personal views where they belong (or handle them in an adult manner) - you I would never hire on the basis you would not fit in with the rest of the employees and would make their lives a misery.

              1. ProgrammerForHire

                Re: Drunken behavior is acceptable ?

                >So you've never worked a day in your life? Figures.

                I never worked as temp. How the f did you understand I have never worked ? I have been working on a full time position for more than 10 years now, the handle is just that, a catchy name.

                >Why shouldn't I hire them if they're the best candidate for the job? What they do on their own time is none of my business.

                >you I would never hire on the basis you would not fit in with the rest of the employees and would make their lives a misery.

                Chances are , if they're alchoholic in their private life, they will bring that behavior to work. I am not speaking as a programmer , but as a manager. Which I am not nor I wish to be. But my sincere thought is , I would not want to hire people with shady habits

      2. ProgrammerForHire

        Re: Drunken behavior is acceptable ?

        Also, I don't think you need reasons to fire temps, depends of course on the internal company policy, but inappropriate behavior seems reason enough

  21. Sil

    Shocking in more than one way.

    I can only understand Microsoft's attitude if it became convinced the woman's accusations would not stand in the courtroom because there was real doubt a rape happened.

    From the woman point of view, if they found sperm or pubes or other material that had very good chance of proving there was indeed penetration, and identifying the man through dna test, why did she not try save more women from rape by putting the accused behind bars. Was getting a job more important ? Also, would she really have not gotten the job, seeing the hugh amount of negative publicity on a company not hiring a temp after the had another temp convicted of rape?

  22. wayward4now
    Pirate

    Simple, all she had to do was pack a gun and let the perp know she was packing heat.

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