It was over a year ago that I wrote about the Corporate Panty Raid in which Microsoft becomes aroused as search jobs heated up to prep us for the next mini-bubble.
I checked my voicemail today to find a message from one of the folks that contacted me on behalf of Microsoft last year. She says she's working closely with the office of the CTO (as opposed to the CTO himself, I guess).
I wonder if she'll read this before I call back tomorrow? Maybe I'll ask her if I can write about our converstaion. It's not like she's going to give me any Microsoft secrets, right?
Andyway, this time around the pitch felt very different. She's looking to talk to folks who have passion for search and are technical visionaries--or something along those lines. I don't remember the exact wording she used. But it was clearly more humble and less combative than my last contact with Microsoft recruiting (a story that I recently told Scoble while we looked upon Lake Tahoe after Gnomedex).
How'd she get my name? Another blogger who writes about search a lot mentioned me to her. When she checked her list, she realized we'd spoken before.
Run and Hide?
Not long ago there was some debate at work about whether or not engineers at Yahoo should put their names on posts to the Yahoo Search blog. Some worry that it gives the competition a list of names of folks they can to try recruit away.
This is a logical concern.
But I put my name and e-mail address on my posts--at least most of the time I do.
I happen to think that engineers deserve to be recognized in public for the contributions they're making. And if Microsoft, Google, A9, Ask Jeeves, or whoever is able to recruit them away, that's life. They probably weren't happy enough at Yahoo for one reason or another. That either says something about Yahoo or the engineer. Probably both.
This feels too much like security through obscurity, and we all know how well that works. Hiding implies fear--it's something we do when we're scared. And fears are there to be faced and overcome, not to keep us in the corner.
Besides, what kind of engineer would want to work at company where they're going to be hidden behind a dark curtain?
Anyway, now you know which side of the argument I'm on.
Update: See Scoble's response, in which he agrees and gives his perspective on this stuff.
Posted by jzawodn at October 25, 2004 10:56 PM
Hi Jeremy --
You "blogged" me! How fun! You're "my first" so thanks for the kind words.
I do want to connect with you "in real time" when you have a moment. I enjoy reading your commentary online and of course you come highly recommended.