back to article Stop us if you've heard this one: IBM sued after axing older staff, this time over 'denying' them their legal rights

IBM is once again facing legal action in America after ditching staffers over the age of 40. This time, Big Blue is accused of using underhand tactics to prevent laid-off employees from firing class-action lawsuits at the tech titan. Specifically, the civil complaint, filed today in the southern district of New York, alleges …

  1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

    But are the morally correct?

    "We are confident that our arbitration clauses are legal and appropriate."

    Yeah, guys, you found a loophole to bend the law so far out of shape that you can keep more money and "legally avoid" the law.. Congratulations. <slow hand clap>

    1. LucreLout Silver badge

      Re: But are the morally correct?

      Yup. It's almost like the smartass that came up with the wheeze is immune to ageing.

      We all get older, or dead. Even in the PC obsessed BBC they still practiced age discrimination to get shot of Moira Stewart, a black lady who had reached the very pinnacle of her profession, seemingly due to talent alone..... and yet 10 years later she's still working as a news reader on the radio.

      There's literally no point in any form of protection from discrimination that does not protect age discrimination as its primary goal, because even one legged black lesbians get old. For the record, I'm not referring to Moira here.

    2. Pontius

      Re: But are the morally correct?

      'tis the merkin way...

      (EX-merkin employee...

    3. Stefan 2

      Re: But are the morally correct?

      Surely at this point every remaining employee must know how shitty their employer is and is only remaining employed either because they are too stupid, too stubborn or too lazy to do anything about it.

      The brain drain that must be going on within IBM as the more clued-up staff run for the hills is going to result in a very sad but very entertaining implosion of big-fail in X year's time.

      1. Rich 11 Silver badge

        Re: But are the morally correct?

        Yeah, but by then the current bunch of board-level arseholes will have claimed their Golden Goodbyes and pissed off to find another company to loot.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: But are the morally correct?

        "Surely at this point every remaining employee must know how shitty their employer is and is only remaining employed either because they are too stupid, too stubborn or too lazy to do anything about it."

        Or look at it from a different viewpoint. If you know that IBM does this, then (when young) use IBM as a stepping stone to the next job. Of course, lack of long term consistency in product development portends a bad future for a technology company.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: But are the morally correct?

          It’s only a stepping stone if it has a prestigious reputation. A crappy company on your CV is a disadvantage. Same as universities.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: But are the morally correct?

        I have had two ex-IBMers that are friends. They were at the pinnacle of their profession with at least 10-15 years before retirement and they were forced to leave IBM. Another ex-IBMer is selling his experience for 500.00 an hour. I managed to steer the company I was working for to hire him and he basically said I was doing everything right and to continue to clean up the mess they had created for themselves.

        I used to be a big champion of IBM but not anymore. They have burned their bridges and I hope they go down on the Titanic.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Uhm... Nope.

    "IBM, for its part, believes the waivers are perfectly legal, noting a recent Supreme Court decision (Epic v Lewis) upholding similar arbitration deals.

    "Multiple courts, including the US Supreme Court, have rejected the plaintiffs' theories," an IBM spokesman told The Register. "We are confident that our arbitration clauses are legal and appropriate."

    This is wrong.

    Epic v. Lewis doesn't cover this.

    The waivers would be perfectly legal if they included the information that they are required to present to the person being fired.

    Without that information, they are not in compliance and thus the waiver is not perfectly legal.

    IBM preys on the fact that many of the employees do not have a legal background and can be intimidated by legal bluffs.

    For example IBM employees sign an overly broad non-compete which is not enforceable.

    They do this with the knowledge that the contract is BS.

    FD: I signed one even after talking w HR telling them that the paragraphs in question were unenforceable. He told me to sign it anyways.

    There's a separate contract for those who get retention packages or are in specialized fields where you are exposed to IP that IBM wants to retain a competitive advantage.

    The bean counters did their homework. They know what the lawsuits will cost and what they are saving by releasing the older workers.

    BTW, IIRC, IBM went with their own self-funded Health Insurance plan. So it costs them even more for older workers.

    1. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

      Re: Uhm... Nope.

      Itsy Bitsy Morons is penny-wise and pound-foolish as the adage goes. There is great institutional memory and skills being lost that is not readily transferable nor written down anywhere. Any organization that has been around awhile has many undocumented items in their operations that have not been formally written down; they are passed on by word of mouth. Lose the font of knowledge and you lost the walking documentation. The cheap PFY do not, cannot, and will not know this lore unless it is taught to them. The PFYs are not at fault for something that was done many years before they ever walked in the door.

      Violating the law is not a good way to win points with anyone other than extremely naive PFYs. This will get around as stories and posts get published and the Internet never forgets.

  3. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    Why are these even legal ?

    You sign away your rights to sue us for us acting illegally or you don't get your pay?

    Do mining companies get workers to sign away their rights to sue for lung disease

    1. LucreLout Silver badge

      Re: Why are these even legal ?

      Compromise agreements are legal here in the UK too - most large corps use them. I'm not suggesting the should/shouldn't be, only that they are legal, routine even. Often coupled with an NDA too.

      1. Julz Bronze badge

        Re: Why are these even legal ?

        Virtually always containing clauses to gag the recipient but strangely not the company that put the contract forward.

        1. SynAckFin

          Re: Why are these even legal ?

          The company is already gagged. Its called the Data Protection Act and it forbids them from disclosing personal information without consent.

          1. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge

            Re: Why are these even legal ?

            The company is already gagged. Its called the Data Protection Act and it forbids them from disclosing personal information without consent.

            This is not true when they are required by law to present information as a compliance to presenting the waiver of your rights.

      2. ridley

        Re: Why are these even legal ?

        Pedant mode: Settlement Agreements, compromise agreements went out sometime ago:

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Why are these even legal ?

        Though as reports here a year or so agi are that IBM have been handling redundancy in the UK on a minimum statutory requirement basis then they won't have been using anything requiring an NDA.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why are these even legal ?

      I am absolutely ignorant of how laws work. It seems to me that if there is a law that gives employees protection of a specific kind then no employer should be able to subvert that law. If you work for the company and want to continue being paid by that employer you are always subject to duress in being asked to sign anything that could limit your rights. Employers do have power over employees. They should certainly not, in anyway, be able to ask an employee to diminish that employees rights.

      1. ACZ

        Re: Why are these even legal ?

        Like people have said above, it's a compromise agreement/settlement agreement, i.e. we are sacking you but want some additional undertakings (e.g. that you won't sue us for age discrimination, or won't engage in a class action). You don't have to give them to us, but if you do then in exchange (as a compromise) we'll give you some extra benefits (e.g. cash / pension etc. etc.). There's no requirement to sign it, but people often do because they want the additional benefits.

        However, the issue here is that IBM have allegedly failed to comply with the statutory requirements which make such an agreement legal i.e. have withheld the age data.

    3. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: Why are these even legal ?

      Its a contract.

      Its legal if the underlying terms are legal. Meaning if they are compliant with how the contract must be presented and they provide consideration... they are legal.

      In this case... for the contract to be valid, they have to show you the list of others being released and their ages to prove to you that you are knowledgeable in that they are not targeting older workers so if you sign, you're making an informed decision. And the consideration are the benefits that they legally don't have to provide, but do.

      This is why they are legal. That said... no presentation of the list (voluntarily, not that you have to ask for it before they present it...) , this is not legal.

  4. Neil Barnes Silver badge

    When I was a wee lad

    and just starting in the working trade, there was this thing called a 'personnel department' and at least a vague idea that the company cared, in some small way, for its employees (and not just the ones at the top of the tree).

    Then the personnel department somehow morphed into 'human resources', and suddenly the workers were plug-in parts, theoretically hot-swappable and replaceable on a moment's notice, to be obtained as cheaply as possible and discarded at the first hint of trouble or expense. This seems to have happened around the time the curse of the MBA struck - I wonder if there's a connection.

    I am very very glad my pension gets paid in less than a year!

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: When I was a wee lad

      Have an upvote from me.

      I am very very glad my pension gets paid in less than a year!

      I get my state pension next month and TBH I'm really glad that I called it a day when I did in 2016.

      I've just started to think about doing some small scale development again but it is just not that important any more.

      I would NOT advise any of my grandkids to go into IT as a career with any decent prospects at all. There aren't until the MBA numpties and BeanCounters realise that sending all the jobs to India etc is not viable in the long term but all they are interested in is the bottom line for the next quarter's results.

      1. 2+2=5 Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: When I was a wee lad

        > I would NOT advise any of my grandkids to go into IT as a career with any decent prospects at all. There aren't until the MBA numpties and BeanCounters realise that sending all the jobs to India etc is not viable in the long term but all they are interested in is the bottom line for the next quarter's results.

        I'm not dependent on this plan for my retirement but I'm expecting the fallout of sending stuff to India to keep me in contracts during my retirement. Just enough to stop me going senile too soon.

    2. chivo243 Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: When I was a wee lad

      You are spot on! The personnel department was there for the whole company. Now it seems HR is there for the sole benefit of the board\share holders etc. Not the people actually doing the work! People who go into HR are like politicians...

      1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

        Re: When I was a wee lad

        "People who go into HR are like politicians..."

        Incompetent whores? They screw you without the benefit of getting laid.

      2. Wincerind

        Re: When I was a wee lad

        Surely we all know that HR stands for Human Remains.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: When I was a wee lad

        > Now it seems HR is there for the sole benefit of the board\share holders etc.

        In my large corp employer, HR just seems to be there for the sole purpose of complying with HR legislation. See that useless bloke over there who can't code to save his life, is lazy as fuck, has a personal hygiene problem and creeps out the women in the office? Can't sack him until he's had one written warning; with a union rep or advisor present to 'support' him; then a PIP; then a second warning; then he goes on sick and they can't sack while he's on sick leave; then eventually he might be sacked.

        In the meantime they can't hire a replacement as that might be construed as an indication that his sacking has been pre-judged and we're all wilting under deadlines he's not helping with.

      4. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: When I was a wee lad

        Now it seems HR is there for the sole benefit of the board

        HR exists to protect the company from the employees and for no other reason. In all the companies I've worked for, there's only been one HR department that *actually* wanted to help the employees - and even then it was only one very-clued up lady (who presumably knew where all the management skeletons were buried).

        When I got made redundant from there, her magic meant that my payoff went up by about 50% while remaining fully within the corporate and legal frameworks.

      5. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: When I was a wee lad

        > People who go into HR are like politicians...

        In my experience, it goes like this: Those who can, Do. Those who can't, Teach. Those who fail Teacher's College ... go into HR. (That being said, I have occasionally encountered a decent HR department, with savvy, caring people. That they are the exception proves the rule.)

    3. David Harper 1

      Re: When I was a wee lad

      A wise colleague once told me: Always remember that HR is not on your side. Their job is to implement management decisions.

      1. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: When I was a wee lad

        After a life in industry, can't upvote the above enough. Kiddo's, the "HR", "People", "personnel" department exists for three reasons: to hire and fire people, to manage their remuneration in the best interests of the company, and to implement the company's policies while protecting it from being sued.

        Notice that nowhere in the above sentence, do I state that the HR department is there to do anything *for* you. It is not. Anything you tell the HR department will either be used against you or held to be used against you in the future. Your management will be informed of all "confidential" conversations unless explicitly prohibited by law (and maybe, even then). They will bob, weave and dodge to avoid controversy. They will not take your side in any dispute with your management, even if your management is clearly in the wrong. They will, instead, look for the simplest way to resolve the issue, which is usually to inform you that your services are no longer required. Do not trust them, do not interact with them if you can avoid doing so.

        1. paulf Silver badge
          Terminator

          Re: When I was a wee lad

          Or, as I summarised 18 months ago

          "The HR department exists only to protect the company from its employees."

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          IBM HR + IBM Lawyers = A very bad place to be

          Having had to invoke IBM's grievance process myself, I wish anyone taking them on the best of luck. After the usual, and useless, manager complaint the next level of escalation is through HR. Here you will be mollified by some sympathy and a promise that they will look into it. They will actually do very little of any substance, and just confirm that the management decision you are questioning is correct - sorry and all that, pat on the head, go away quietly, don't mention this to anyone else. Even if they absolutely know that the manager was at fault, they will never admit it, to preserve the master/slave relationship.

          If you have a strong nerve, and a good case, then you can appeal the HR decision. Then it will then get passed to the IBM lawyers to see if there is any chance of a legal challenge. My case was pretty good because they had sidestepped TUPE regulations (acquisition was the only reason I was working there). Through gritted teeth they coughed up the missing bonus payments they owed me. They never admitted that IBM was at fault, but the manager who made that error was gone within 3 months.

          1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

            Re: IBM HR + IBM Lawyers = A very bad place to be

            Presumably, if the lawyers are Nazgul then HR must be Orcs.. (I'll leave the reader to decide whether they are Mordor Orcs or Uruk-hai..)

            1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

              Re: IBM HR + IBM Lawyers = A very bad place to be

              >HR must be Orcs

              More the piles that non house-trained Orcs leave behind them

    4. Julz Bronze badge

      Re: When I was a wee lad

      The last couple of American corporations I worked for had even outsourced their HR departments to Eastern Europe. The only in country presence was the HR Director. Other than standing up in meetings telling us about the next round of redundancies, I've no idea what they did.

      1. rnturn

        Re: When I was a wee lad

        > I've no idea what they did

        We had a dedicated HR rep whose job it was to deal with the IT teams' staffing needs. Of course, the people in that role changed about every six months---about the time they a.) figured out where the bathrooms were and b.) even got around to even meeting the IT managers. Their job seemed to be: send us resumes for unqualified candidates and--in the rare chance that a /qualified/ candidate's resume leaked through their filtering--tell us the candidate was too expensive to be hired. End result: we were perpetually understaffed. ``Mission Accomplished'' I guess.

    5. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Re: When I was a wee lad

      I am very very glad my pension gets paid in less than a year!

      I become eligible for early retirement this summer, which by happy coincidence is the month after my length of service qualifies me for the maximum possible redundancy payment. I don't want to ever have to rely on either condition but it will be a weight off my mind.

      I feel really sorry for the people 20+ years younger than I am, who've seen their employment terms and pensions gutted and have never really known the expectation of any sort of future stability. Sadly too many people have forgotten that there was a reason why we as a society introduced pensions and other safety nets, while other people have been only too eager to replace long-term stability for the many with short-term gain for the few. My only consolation is that I've never voted for any of those bastards.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: When I was a wee lad

        >length of service qualifies me for the maximum possible redundancy payment.

        Until they decide that they are just paying the statutory minimum. what are you going to do - go on strike?

        >I am very very glad my pension gets paid in less than a year!

        Sorry the part of the company that paid the pension went bust. All the asests and employees of the Company were transferred to New Company(Bermuda) ltd which doesn't have a pension

        1. Rich 11 Silver badge

          Re: When I was a wee lad

          Until they decide that they are just paying the statutory minimum.

          It's written into my contract. If they try to force me into accepting a new contract I walk, taking the money with me. That's why I said it was a weight off my mind.

          Sorry the part of the company that paid the pension went bust.

          My pension fund isn't managed by my employers. This is why I said I pity the people younger than me, who've not been given the option of having similar arrangements.

          I'm going to guess that you are one of those younger people, never knowing the level of security which your grandparents (and probably your great-grandparents too) fought for. That's why you find it so difficult to recognise what I described. It's not really your fault because it's all you've ever known. However, you and your peers can try for something better. I hope you do.

    6. rnturn

      Re: When I was a wee lad

      Human Resources: We took the "Person" out of "Personnel".

    7. not.known@this.address Bronze badge

      Re: When I was a wee lad

      "They wouldn't be called human RESOURCES if they weren't meant to be strip-mined..."

    8. fredesmite Bronze badge

      Re: When I was a wee lad

      HR role now a day is to get rid of people as quickly and efficiently as possible.

  5. Unicornpiss Silver badge
    Flame

    Using IBM..

    If I was picking a firm to provide goods or services in IT, hmm... which would I pick? A firm that has no respect for its own talent base, treats its employees like expendable garbage, and has nothing but inexperienced Millenials in key positions, or someone else? (I think you all know the answer here) Same applies to any company that believes in outsourcing everything so it doesn't have to pay its workers' benefits.

    1. chivo243 Silver badge
      Windows

      Re: Using IBM..

      So, no Oracle for you as well? The love the old people, just not on their payroll...

    2. paulf Silver badge
      Terminator

      Re: Using IBM..

      But you're a techie that understands the problems and downsides of outsourcing so your definition of success would include doing the job at least as well as it is before outsourcing. If you were a C-Suite picking a firm you'd be thinking of your pay/bonus/career so would pick the cheapest "over promise and under deliver" bunch of sharks (with an extended remix of "you can completely shaft the TUPEd workforce too, if you give us a further 5% off the contract price"), pick up your stonking bonus 12 months later for a job well done, then GTF out before the merde hits the fan ready for the next bunch of sea gull managers.

      1. Rich 11 Silver badge

        Re: Using IBM..

        the next bunch of sea gull managers.

        Are they the ones who can be seen early on Saturday and Sunday mornings pecking chunks out of pavement pizzas?

  6. WatAWorld

    People joining IBM, do you seriously think you'll never be over 40 ???

    Why would anyone with a triple digit IQ go to work at IBM?

    One day you'll be over 40 and nobody will want you because you were stupid enough to work there for over 10 years.

    1. HmmmYes Silver badge

      Re: People joining IBM, do you seriously think you'll never be over 40 ???

      I my ~30 years of working life, no smart person every went to work for IBM - well, not the business, money making bit.

      IBM used to attract dull plodders. No problem with that, IBMs core business tended to be slow n steady.

      However, thee deal always was - IBM gives you a goot middle icnome but keeps you employed for ever.

      SInce it all went wrong i nthe mid 90s, IBM has lost its way as an org.

      Its trying to play hire n fire but not offering the salary.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Also a problem in the UK ....

    Remember the recent discovery that big companies force staff to sign non-disclosure agreements even to conceal criminal behaviour.

    Hopefully to be made officially worthless in court very soon - but watch out: it's the next step.

  8. Zog_but_not_the_first Silver badge
    Holmes

    Once...

    ... we allowed accountants to move from a vital function of the measurement and control of business functions to centre stage we were fucked.

    1. Terry 6 Silver badge

      Re: Once...

      YES!!

      I'd upvote you a thousand times. But El Reg and my accountant say I can't

      It's not the MBAs (bless em) it's the accountants. Their brief is keeping a hold of the cash - minimising outlay. The business managers should be allocating resources, investing and developing etc. with the accountants to advise on the potentials and risks.

      They should never have been allowed to take control. They are not trained to think in terms of long term development or opportunity cost etc.But since shareholder value and senior manager bonuses seem to be tied to the difference in the short term cost and income figures the accountant is now king.

      1. rnturn

        Re: Once...

        I recall an old word of advice to IT folks looking to work for a company: Beware if IT reports to the CFO.

        1. FozzyBear Silver badge

          Re: Once...

          Words to live by mturn, words to live by...

      2. Phage

        Re: Once...

        Sigh - Your post is wrong on so many levels it's hard to know where to begin. I can only assume that your management told you it wasn't their fault, but rather the boogeymen of Finance ? Hint. They lied.

        "Their brief is keeping a hold of the cash - minimising outlay." No, no it isn't. The brief of an accountant is to protect and maximise the assets of a company.

        "The business managers should be allocating resources, investing and developing etc. with the accountants to advise on the potentials and risks." - Yep. See above

        "They should never have been allowed to take control. " They haven't. Who told you that ?

        "They are not trained to think in terms of long term development or opportunity cost etc." Completely wrong. Finance is trained in exactly those things.

        "But since shareholder value and senior manager bonuses seem to be tied to the difference in the short term cost and income figures the accountant is now king." Hahahahahaha. Oh god, hahahahaha. You're blaming the short-termism of management of the Finance people ? hahahahahaha <gasp> the accountant is king ! hahahahahaha...,cough. cough choke... that's so funny.

        Short-termism occurs because management and the Board are rewarded based on short-term KPIs like the bottom line or share price in any particular year. Management then sets targets, Budgets and tactics accordingly. The fact that this is often not the best outcome for the company is usually ignored.

    2. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: Once...

      I've said in many times: NEVER let an accountant run your business. Nor the lawyers either.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    IBM has denied

    Can anyone else in here see the phrase "IBM has denied" soon becoming shorthand for "load of porky pies"?

    It's not quite rhyming, but I love it anyway . . . .

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      IBM denies

      Now it rhymes - hurrah!

  10. steviebuk Silver badge

    Here's that word again

    IBM are cunts. The more you read about them the more they sound like the worse company to work for.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Enhanced redunancy offer for signing away rights

    A colleague came under the big blue axe a few years ago. His "severance" package had 2 options - take the basic payout, or get an "enhanced offer" - i.e. more money (and it was around 50% more) - if he signed away his right to take legal action, although IBM also offered to pay (up to a specified maximum amount) for "independent legal advice" if he wanted to opt for the enhanced offer.

    IANAL, but I have to wonder why they offer to pay for "independent legal advice" if they are aware their terms are breaking the law?

    1. Julz Bronze badge

      Re: Enhanced redunancy offer for signing away rights

      It's a requirement that the employee gets legal advice and therefore is considered fully informed before they sign the gagging order/ compromise agreement. This is so the employee can not claim at a future date that they were forced into signing it or that they didn't know what they were signing. In theory, the employees lawyer could advice that some of the terms on the proposed contract where not in the employees interest and should be changed before it is signed. In practice, the issuing corporation will not agree to any changes of the terms. It is normally, take it or leave it. It is not an even negotiation position.

      1. fredesmite Bronze badge

        Re: Enhanced redunancy offer for signing away rights

        In America if you don't sign the departure ... you don't get leaving package ...

  12. sportrunner

    Coming soon...

    Age is just the first problem. They should also have to post how many H-1B visas are working at the company. IT companies in the US are bringing in H-1B workers at lower wages and have the added bonus of holding that over the worker with the treat of getting sent home. Saw that one first hand as I was replaced by one. Sadly the only safe job seems to be the lawyers protecting this crap.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Coming soon...

      Have you considered leaving the Union and taking back to control?

      It is a guaranteed painless processes which allows your small output easy access to a world market with trade deals that are easy to make 1nano-sec after you leave.

      If you do decide to let in foreigners we have 650 experts on the process and we can soon let you have a chief negotiator at a very reasonable rate.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Being one of them "geriatric post 55's", I don't know how much longer this stuff is even going to make the news - o for the days when if you made it to 55, you were one in 100, and by that time you had all these kids that took care of you in your old, toothless grinning age. Whatsa company going to do in a few decades when half the population has been forced into retirement and their taxes go up to pay for all the government programs......wait, did I just say something funny, why is everyone laughing........

  14. fredesmite Bronze badge
    Mushroom

    make your money when your are young

    Wander through any IBM ,HP , Dell .. Apple , Google, Facebook site .. you won't see any older employees.

  15. fredesmite Bronze badge

    I was on Watson HC cloud

    As a contractor ( looking for a full time role ) When the axe fell .. I was spared when 2/3 of the team was wfr ... I landed a FT role the next month and left .

  16. MachDiamond Silver badge

    Non-documented procedure

    How many here do things at work that aren't documented? Did you learn it through co-workers? "When such and such happens, kick the rack on this corner....We've never been able to find that F-ing bad connection."

    Stuff that didn't work rarely gets documented and when it is, it goes in the back of the cabinet until it's thrown out years later. When companies start axing older staff, they lose the search engine that knows about all those failed attempts. They not only lose some procedures, they lose the reason behind those fixes too.

    "SCE to Aux". When Apollo 12 was struck by lightening as it lifted off of the pad its brains got scrambled. One engineer, John Aaron, recognized what was going on quickly since he'd seen it before on another rocket launch and knew how to get the systems back online. He was able to get the astronauts to flip an obscure switch and get back up and in control. A fresh-out engineer, no matter how talented, would not have been able to diagnose the problem and know the solution fast enough. Solving the problem fast had to be worth a couple of billion dollars or more than enough money to pay a whole bunch of salaries for years.

  17. Neiljohnuk

    IBM BOHICA...

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