• morry (unregistered)

    All I know is the submitter is certainly seems more calm and level headed than I would have been. I suspect I might have signed the form, but immediately started an intense job search.

  • (cs) in reply to Sanity
    Sanity:
    I can understand having mouths to feed, and bills to pay. But it really does seem like the perfect opportunity to find out if there are companies out there who have a basic understanding of concepts like bandwidth.

    Unless you're in an unusual environment where the management is also IT saavy, you'll have a hard time finding that. I know it might be a bit rediculous, but most upper managment just wants explanations for dollar signs, nothing more. Some of them don't desire to know anything else but why it cost them money, even if it seems impossible.

  • OldMan (unregistered) in reply to Anon Fred
    Anon Fred:
    "Having policies" is a whole different barrel of shit than "being illegal."
    And yet slander, which if you look carefully, I actually mentioned, is illegal in all 50 states of the Union.
  • Anon Fred (unregistered) in reply to OldMan
    OldMan:
    And yet slander, which if you look carefully, I actually mentioned, is illegal in all 50 states of the Union.
    Saying "Joe frequently showed up to work drunk" isn't slander if Joe frequently showed up to work drunk.

    There is indeed a set of things that employers cannot talk about. However, that set is not "everything except whether they would be eligible for rehire."

  • Tommy American (unregistered) in reply to OldMan
    OldMan:
    Anon Fred:
    "Having policies" is a whole different barrel of shit than "being illegal."
    And yet slander, which if you look carefully, I actually mentioned, is illegal in all 50 states of the Union.

    There are a dozen ways to let someone know the person is a piece of crap. Here's one:

    Hello, Tom gave me your name as a reference. Did he work for you in 2007?

    Yes.

    Did he do his work satisfactorily?

    He worked for me in 2007.

    Did he get along with his peers?

    He worked for me in 2007.

  • (cs) in reply to Tommy American
    Tommy American:
    There are a dozen ways to let someone know the person is a piece of crap. Here's one:

    Hello, Tom gave me your name as a reference. Did he work for you in 2007?

    Yes.

    Did he do his work satisfactorily?

    He worked for me in 2007.

    Did he get along with his peers?

    He worked for me in 2007.

    I worked for a division of British Telecom where that was the official response for reference requests - didn't stop me getting my current job...

  • SomeCoder (unregistered) in reply to Anon Fred
    Anon Fred:
    OldMan:
    And yet slander, which if you look carefully, I actually mentioned, is illegal in all 50 states of the Union.
    Saying "Joe frequently showed up to work drunk" isn't slander if Joe frequently showed up to work drunk.

    There is indeed a set of things that employers cannot talk about. However, that set is not "everything except whether they would be eligible for rehire."

    Yeah but Joe could decide to be a dumb ass and sue you for slander anyway. Then you'd have to prove that he did in fact show up to work drunk, etc. etc....

    Not fun.

  • Joe (unregistered) in reply to Sanity
    Comment held for moderation.
  • John (unregistered)

    Congrats to you for learning from a situation that was not even your fault! If more people would learn to swallow their pride when there's no other option, (not to mention seeing the situation as a learning experience) perhaps IT personnel would have less of a bad reputation for being cocky and unreliable.

    I'm not saying that an employer should be able to run roughshod over you forever.... Just until you find something better. At the end of the day, the family's gotta eat and most families would prefer something other than "your pride" for dinner.

  • Keb (unregistered) in reply to Cian
    Cian:
    I worked for a division of British Telecom where that was the official response for reference requests - didn't stop me getting my current job...
    Its pretty standard in the UK for most empolyers to have this policy now as there is some odd HR law/government policy where employers are not allowed to give negative impressions they can only give the facts of emplyment for example punctiality, days sick and dates of employment.
  • RF (unregistered)

    "if you host a webcam site out of your basement, you support terrorism." Welcome back to the 1990s I guess, this time with a twist!

  • GF (unregistered) in reply to ObiWayneKenobi
    ObiWayneKenobi:
    In a situation like this you tell them to go fuck themselves, refuse to sign it, and let them fire you. Then collect unemployment and/or if your state allows it sue them for unfair dismissal, and cite a threat (i.e. "Sign this and admit you did something you didn't do, or we fire you") to generate bad press for the employer
    Well that's a good way to secure future employment. "Yeah, I'm the guy you read about who sued his last employer."
  • (cs) in reply to OldMan
    OldMan:
    Anon Fred:
    "Having policies" is a whole different barrel of shit than "being illegal."
    And yet slander, which if you look carefully, I actually mentioned, is illegal in all 50 states of the Union.
    Yes, slander is illegal, thank you for pointing out the obvious. However, let's leave this tangent and return to your original comment:
    By law, previous employers cannot comment on specifics like that, only whether or not they'd hire you again.
    You didn't limit it to slander, you said "cannot comment", period, which is ridiculous.
  • (cs) in reply to Jay
    Jay:
    There's also the question of whether the form he was asked to sign was an admission of guilt or just an acknowledgement of the reprimand. I've never gotten an official reprimand like that -- usually they just drag me in a back room and beat me senseless -- but on annual performance reviews I recall they've always asked me to sign it with small print on the form stating that by signing I am not saying that I agree with my boss's evaluation but simply that I acknowledge receiving it.

    I can't speak for the OP, but I've personally had a few write ups for minor indescretions (basically certain classes of bugs results in write-ups), so I can tell you how it works at the corporation I work at: It says "As an employee of The MegaCorporation, I understand that you must follow MegaCorporation procedures and guidelines as outlined above. Signed, x_____" So at least at the corporation I work at it doesn't appear to be an admission of guilt. I'd hope other corporations are similar.

  • Jake (unregistered) in reply to ObiWayneKenobi

    Absolutely, tech people have so many opportunities now-a-days. I would have given a major go f' yo selves.

  • Todd (unregistered) in reply to anonymous
    anonymous:
    imMute:
    Sounds about like the time that my school district tried to blame me for saturating their fiber link with a single computer running uTorrent. Supposedly I took down 3 of the 5 schools. Go figure.

    I actually did saturate my high school's 1.5 Mbps DSL line torrenting Knoppix one day. ;-)

    It was pretty funny. Once I noticed people were having connectivity problems, I immediately stopped the torrent. The computers teacher knew (because I told him what was going on, so he wouldn't be concerned it was a connectivity problem).

    Probably a month later, my advisor called my parents (at home, in the evening). He was calling for other reasons as well (mostly a handful of ways that a geek could get distracted from their schoolwork ;-), but one of his complaints was that I was using "powerful search engines". It took me a while to figure out that he was talking about BitTorrent, but it had filtered through my computers teacher, who probably tried to explain it to him in a non-technical way.

    What year was that? My home connection is twice that.

  • Eric (unregistered)

    So many people talking about refusing to sign the paper and worrying about admission of guilt?

    I'm curious what the disciplinary action was really for. I don't know if Cam himself wishes to comment, but I bet it was for:

    • Not following the proper procedures for working from home or
    • Use of company computer equipment (network) for non work related purposes

    rather than

    • Taking down the network

    Furthermore, all the people that think that they could have sued for unlawful termination probably haven't read their terms of employment (let alone considered the cost of said action).

    And I doubt that few HR disciplinary actions are stated as an "admission of guilt". It wouldn't hold up in court. You cannot be held to a document that you were forced to sign, and the requirement to sign something or be fired would make the document useless.

  • (cs) in reply to imMute

    We had a moment like that in the aerospace lab (the only place I learned anything useful in high school). We connected up to the schools network behind our brand new proxy server that several of us had built. The guy hooking up the CAT5 didn't have them labeled and ended up plugging it in backwards. Apparently it destroyed the whole district's networking ability. Of course they were running Novell and we were the misfits running Linux so it was our fault and had nothing to do with how they were running their network. I will point out that the head of the network was a guy thoroughly useless at the job due to the Peter Principle. He was originally hired to fix analog tape and record players years ago. Anyway, it was soon after that incident that the aerospace lab was given a cable connection from the local cable company and asked not to hook up to the district's network any longer. Both have been happy ever since as far as I know.

  • Jason (unregistered)

    I've worked for a bank before. Sounds familiar. Lots of ego at the management level with little technical expertise to back it up.

  • BigTuna (unregistered) in reply to dpm
    Comment held for moderation.
  • gh0st (unregistered) in reply to NaN

    Insulated college kiddie says what?

  • OldMan (unregistered) in reply to dpm
    dpm:
    You didn't limit it to slander, you said "cannot comment", period, which is ridiculous.
    Regardless of any pedantry in which you are choosing to engage, the plain fact of the matter is that my original statement was that the ignorance of hiring practices is staggering, to which was quipped "Irony!" (how original). Even if "irony" was being used properly, it's still nothing of the sort. It's simply the truth. Modern hiring practices usually prohibit HR departments from doing anything other than confirming employment and a few other details, so as to minimize risk to themselves.

    But keep on beating that horse.

  • SP (unregistered)

    I think I would have signed it. But only if I get to add a document that goes with the write up in my HR file. The document would explain how it couldn't have happened, and have my boss sign that he agreed.

    Now you offical have your side of the story on file.

  • (cs)

    Having some minor experiences with this sort of thing, many HR departments will often allow you to attach a statement to a reprimand to show your side to whoever looks in your file later. In some places, not even your direct management is allowed to look in your file, so the whole thing is kind of moot.

    All of the larger companies I have worked for have had policies for confirming references only employment dates, titles, salary (not all companies) and re-hire status.

    As far as slander goes, I've been slandered by a client. Specifically made accusations which they knew to be false sent directly to my manager the week before my review. On the good side, my manager knew they were crap, because I'd been copying him on the information to the client that contradicted it as it came up and he'd been on on conference calls. "Oh, don't worry about that. We didn't believe him anyway."

  • dwarf74 (unregistered) in reply to ObiWayneKenobi

    This may be a perfectly valid response in AspergerLand, but in the real world... well, it demonstrates a huge lack of maturity.

    Real people have bills. Many have mortgages, kids, spouses, and commitments. I know I do. Responsible adults choose their battles wisely.

  • Cam S. (unregistered) in reply to Eric

    If memory serves, it was "Use of company computer equipment (network) for non work related purposes."

    That said, as has been pointed out by another commenter, it was my server, my webcam, my connection. The other folks on my team were just browsing to my site. The accusation got trumped up quite a bit by way of the network guy's "streaming live video" hyperbole.

  • MrsPost (unregistered)

    These are my own experiences/opinions. YMMV

    Been there, done that. Fought it once.

    The OP (of the story) said he learned a valuable lesson about corporate politics. Whoever management likes gets to determine reality.

    I fought being written up by proving management didn't follow corporate policy. They didn't like that one bit. But if you're going to try to entangle someone using the disciplinary process it might behoove you to actually read the thing. End result - no writeup whatsoever and it all went away with the next crisis.

    Most larger companies don't even do their own employment verification here in the states. They contract it out. I believe they will provide the dates of employment, last position held, and last salary. That's it. Anything else and the employee could possibly sue them for slander/libel/anything else.

    The people you choose as your references are the ones that could do the most damage, but they're a bit harder to prove as being the naughty ones. Then again, one would hope you wouldn't choose backstabbers as your references.

    Sorry for the stream of random comments but everyone else seemed to be doing it.

  • Cam S. (unregistered) in reply to Cam S.
    Cam S.:
    If memory serves, it was "Use of company computer equipment (network) for non work related purposes."

    That said, as has been pointed out by another commenter, it was my server, my webcam, my connection. The other folks on my team were just browsing to my site. The accusation got trumped up quite a bit by way of the network guy's "streaming live video" hyperbole.

    D'oh! Forgot to click "quote." This was a reply to Eric's question about what was actually on the disciplinary report.

  • CatsAlmighty (unregistered)

    There is a solution to this problem:

    Don't sign the paper, get fired and sue for wrongful termination (easily proven in this case). Even "at will" employers in the US can be sued in most workplaces that have judicious amounts of paperwork, such as banks, in their hiring procedures. Many of the same protection clauses (such as you paying back your employer for damages done to company while working under them) can be reversed in just such a case as this. Loss of job, kids to be fed, emotional trauma, blah blah blah, here's 5 million dollars shut your mouth and never talk to the press again.

    Your emotional mileage may vary, and I rarely think of suing as a competent option, but when dealing with cooperations you blah with the deck that has skulls on the cards, not care bears.

  • jumentum (unregistered)
    Comment held for moderation.
  • (cs) in reply to anonymous
    anonymous:
    one of his complaints was that I was using "powerful search engines". It took me a while to figure out that he was talking about BitTorrent, but it had filtered through my computers teacher, who probably tried to explain it to him in a non-technical way.

    That'll teach you not to use Google in school again!

  • SomeCoder (unregistered) in reply to MrsPost
    MrsPost:
    The people you choose as your references are the ones that could do the most damage, but they're a bit harder to prove as being the naughty ones. Then again, one would hope you wouldn't choose backstabbers as your references.

    Yeah, I made the mistake of putting someone as a reference who DID stab me in the back. If I had the time and money, I probably could have sued him for slander but us mere mortals really don't have that luxury all the time. I eventually found out about what he was saying after I already landed a job (that didn't call him for a reference) and it was complete and utter slander.

    I've learned my lesson and moved on. Now my references are only people who I KNOW will give good reviews.

  • (cs) in reply to OldMan
    OldMan:
    dpm:
    You didn't limit it to slander, you said "cannot comment", period, which is ridiculous.
    Regardless of any pedantry in which you are choosing to engage, the plain fact of the matter is that my original statement was that the ignorance of hiring practices is staggering, to which was quipped "Irony!" (how original). Even if "irony" was being used properly, it's still nothing of the sort. It's simply the truth. Modern hiring practices usually prohibit HR departments from doing anything other than confirming employment and a few other details, so as to minimize risk to themselves.

    But keep on beating that horse.

    Keep on refusing to admit that you simply made a mistake. You made a flat statement that was incorrect and got called on it. Call that "pedantry" to save your ego, though.

  • (cs)

    Ya know, the moral high ground is a wonderful place, but I've yet to find anyone that lets you buy food with morality.

    To the people that would rip up the document... there is a phrase "Don't bite the hand that feeds you." It's all well and good to object to a write up, but if you're simply signing to say that you acknowledge you have been disciplined for misuse of company property (the network in this case), fighting it wouldn't actually work. Would you like to try proving the semantic difference between "live video streaming" and "a slow update webcam" while admitting that you did infact encourage staff members to view it?

    More likely than not, the write up didn't contain any mention of bringing the network down. It would be what they could prove you had intent to do, technicalities aside.

    A write up is not a termination, just sign it and get on with your job.

    To all the people happily saying that getting a job is easy... have you looked at the economy recently? Isn't that recession a scary looking thing...

  • (cs) in reply to Talkie Toaster
    Talkie Toaster:
    Nether:
    Go ahead, ask me anything and be astounded at the answers I can provide! My expertise knows no bounds!

    Would you like some toast?

    No one around here wants any toast. Not now, not ever. We don't want no buns, baps, baguettes or bagels. No croissants, no hot cross buns. And definitely no smegging flapjacks.

  • (cs) in reply to dpm
    dpm:
    Keep on refusing to admit that you simply made a mistake. You made a flat statement that was incorrect and got called on it. Call that "pedantry" to save your ego, though.
    Christ, will you drop it and stop whining? So he was wrong about the legal part, BFD... the main point he was making is perfectly valid. What, you didn't (or still don't) understand what he was saying, so you have to latch onto pedantic technicalities to soothe your pride?

    I know that I didn't have any trouble following what he said...

  • anon (unregistered) in reply to Jay
    Jay:
    Personally, as someone who enjoys having a roof over my head and food to eat, it would take an awful lot for me to quit a job without having another job lined up. Maybe those of you who are still living in your parents' basement and just use your paycheck to buy video games can get all high and mighty on standing your ground and all.

    No, I simply put my paycheck in the bank and live well within my means. I think my current savings are enough to last me a year (ie: current level of spending excluding luxuries) and I haven't even been saving money for long. I fully expect that to be much higher (and in investments that have better returns) by the time I start a family (given all the unexpected expenses that can occur anything else would be negligence on my part). Interestingly enough I've heard people say more than once that it's impossible to live on less than $x in my area yet I somehow manage to do so quite comfortably.

    I'm also quite sure I could find a good job within a couple months and there are less desirable options available for me in other fields/jobs.

  • huh? (unregistered)

    I'm curious as to why he didn't ask them to prove that the problem was caused by him?

  • Nobody (unregistered)

    If his boss was politically capable at all, he would have turned this around on the Network Group manager and made him look like a complete fool.

    It sucks working for a boss with no political savvy.

  • Anon Fred (unregistered) in reply to brodie
    brodie:
    Christ, will you drop it and stop whining?
    Ah, that brings back memories.
    So he was wrong about the legal part, BFD... the main point he was making is perfectly valid.
    There is a significant difference between "this is what everybody(*) does" and "this is The Law." If you're any good at gathering requirements you should be able to figure it out.

    (* Of course, a few people in here have directly related anecdotes about companies that don't do what "everybody" does.)

  • anonymous (unregistered) in reply to Todd
    Todd:
    anonymous:
    imMute:
    Sounds about like the time that my school district tried to blame me for saturating their fiber link with a single computer running uTorrent. Supposedly I took down 3 of the 5 schools. Go figure.

    I actually did saturate my high school's 1.5 Mbps DSL line torrenting Knoppix one day. ;-)

    <snip>

    What year was that? My home connection is twice that.

    It was until about a year ago, when they upgraded to a T1. Both connections were 1.5 Mbps each way.

    The reason it isn't as fast as your home connection is that it was a business connection, so the ISP needed to actually be able to provide more of the bandwidth. (Home connections can be oversold more easily.)

    Bear in mind, the school has 150 students and around 50 staff in four grades. There's one computer lab of about 20 machines, each teacher has a machine in their office, and many students bring laptops to use. We rarely ran into problems with the 1.5M DSL line, except when the shoddy phone line knocked it down to 1.1 or 0.9M -- then it got a little cramped.

  • anonymous (unregistered) in reply to Arancaytar
    Arancaytar:
    anonymous:
    one of his complaints was that I was using "powerful search engines". It took me a while to figure out that he was talking about BitTorrent, but it had filtered through my computers teacher, who probably tried to explain it to him in a non-technical way.

    That'll teach you not to use Google in school again!

    Heh. Something along that lines became a bit of a joke among my friends.

  • jbinaz (unregistered) in reply to DC
    pitchingchris:
    So its back to the old boss covering his *ss again and letting his employee take the fall.

    I don't think so, I think he also had to CC: all his co-workers, too. Who then passed it around to other people at the bank...

    My question is WTF actually happened?

  • jbinaz (unregistered) in reply to Cam S.
    Cam S.:
    Why didn't I refuse to sign or walk? Because I actually liked that job. I liked it quite a bit. I stayed for another four years after that for a total of seven years. By the time I left, I was the lead online banking developer.

    Sounds reasonable to me. I'd have done the same...

    Cam S.:
    Stupid as it was, I learned a valuable lesson about corporate politics that day, and it helped to embolden me. From then on, I wasn't afraid to truly speak my mind or do what I thought was right, because I'd been written up before, and I lived through it. :)

    You sound like a smart dude!

  • jbinaz (unregistered) in reply to Joe
    Joe:
    Didn't you read why he was fired?
    Can't you read? He didn't get fired, he worked there several more years...

    Before you go spouting off at the mouth, read.

  • (cs) in reply to Nazca
    Nazca:
    Talkie Toaster:
    Nether:
    Go ahead, ask me anything and be astounded at the answers I can provide! My expertise knows no bounds!

    Would you like some toast?

    No one around here wants any toast. Not now, not ever. We don't want no buns, baps, baguettes or bagels. No croissants, no hot cross buns. And definitely no smegging flapjacks.

    Ah, so you’re a waffle man!

  • Chris (unregistered) in reply to anonymous

    I actually took down multiple sites like that once as well. They were all T3s, and we were on a T1.

    The trick was that I had a misconfigured Linux boot disk that was trying to PXE boot across the WAN and mount data via NFS... from a CIFS server. That version of the kernel would go into full barf mode like that, and blast out connection requests as fast as possible.

    The VPN aggregator that we shared at the time couldn't handle the connection load, CPU overloaded, and all sites were offline

  • tigo (unregistered) in reply to OldMan

    I have to agree with NaN. screw accepting blame for something you didn't do. Have some principles, find a new job where you'd be respected and listened to.

    It's not misguided to stand up for your character.

    In the extreme, couldn't legal action be taken against your employer in a situation like this?

    If it were me, I'd walk away... pissed off... and find a new job... there are plenty of banks and IT positions out there.

    peace.

  • Opie (unregistered) in reply to Yoooder
    Yoooder:
    When I was a tech at my school I'd constantly tie up all bandwidth by working on doing windows updates to 30+ machines at one (no budget/motivation for a cache/WSUS server). I was actually told when reloading labs during school hours to work on no more than 2 machines at once; which I suppose makes sense when you consider that I wasn't making much and that they contracted nearly all their server/service installs for way too much $$$.

    I also took down the entire network when I added an uplink cable to the front of a switch that looked to be off the network, when in fact it had a dedicated uplink port (scsi-like) on the back that was wired in. I'm actually not entirely sure just what went down technically to cause the issue, as the switch wasn't part of the backbone and was only 10/100 when we had a fibre connection tying the 3 buildings together.

    Look up "broadcast storm" and "spanning tree protocol" and you'll know exactly what you did and how to keep it from happening again.

  • ChiefCrazyTalk (unregistered) in reply to cparker
    cparker:
    ChiefCrazyTalk:
    ObiWayneKenobi:
    In a situation like this you tell them to go fuck themselves, refuse to sign it, and let them fire you. Then collect unemployment and/or if your state allows it sue them for unfair dismissal, and cite a threat (i.e. "Sign this and admit you did something you didn't do, or we fire you") to generate bad press for the employer
    Good plan - except you cant collect unemployment if you are fired for cause.
    That statement is not true in every state.

    True in PA

Leave a comment on “The Webcam DoS Attack”

Log In or post as a guest

Replying to comment #:

« Return to Article