Commentary and Reviews by DJ Cline
- DJ Cline Commentary 07-01-06
Copyright 2006 All rights reserved.
Once a month, I usually send out a large collection of commentary and
reviews to the Future Salon.
Because of the amount of material and response, I've finally set up a
If you want to see everything I written for the past month check out
Below is an excerpt of my take on discussions this month by Wayne and
Denice Denton worked toward a future that she will never see.
However she fell, she did not fall from grace.
Pride and Prejudice
The Gay Pride Parade was held in San Francisco today, but a prominent
leader was found dead Saturday morning.
More at www.djcline.com
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- On 4/30/06, D. J. Cline <djcline01@...> wrote:
>Sorry to take so long to look up the details on this, everybody.
> It's About Time For Overtime
> A California court has decided in favor of former Electronics Arts
> software engineers like Leander Hasty, who wanted to be paid overtime.
> It turns out that recruiting people to Silicon Valley, forcing them to
> repay their relocation fees, working them long hours with ridiculous
> deadlines and then driving them to exhaustion is… abuse. Work rules
> said that they were doing creative work and therefore were off the
> clock. Obviously, someone who does not understand creative people wrote
> this rule. It should be noted that game sales are flattening. Users
> complain that the games aren't as interesting as they used to be. Don't
> do the crime if you can't pay the overtime.
The lawsuits were initiated by the whining (anonymously) of ea_spouse
on livejournal, http://ea-spouse.livejournal.com/
ea_spouse was later revealed to be Erin Hoffman, fiance (at the time,
now wife) of Leander Hasty.
Various webpages claim the ea_spouse whining led to 6 lawsuits, but I
could only identify 5 of them:
- Jamie Kirschenbaum vs Electronic Arts
- Leander Hasty vs Electronic Arts
- Tam Su vs Electronic Arts
- Aaron Emirez vs Activision
- Andrew Wilson vs Sony
The Jamie Kirschenbaum case was the first case, and apparently the
legal theory behind it was that engineers are exempt to overtime pay,
but since graphic artists are not engineers, they are not exempt to
overtime pay in California, and EA broke the law (allegedly) by
classifying graphic artists as engineers and denying them overtime
The legal theory in the Leander Hasty case was that even engineers
are (allegedly) exempt from overtime pay in California unless their
income is above a certain threshold ($80,000 was cited in web
articles but $41/hr is mentioned in the legal complaint), and the
more vague legal theory that "the expectation for salaried work is
flex time averaging 40 hours per week."
EA's response was to relocate jobs to other states and countries,
including Florida where they got sued again by Tam Su. I have no
comment here as I have no knowledge of Florida laws regarding
overtime exemption for engineers or what legal theory is the basis
for the Tam Su lawsuit.
Electronic Arts did not lose any of the cases. DJ Cline's paragraph
above implies that EA lost the case with Leander Hasty. In fact EA
settled all 3 cases out of court. The Kirschenbaum case was settled
for $14.9 million, the Leander Hasty case was settled for $15.6
million, and the Tam Su case was settled for $785,000.
EA did nothing wrong.
+ Jamie Kurschenbaum complaint +
PDF, 16 pages
+ Leander Hasty complaint +
PDF, 13 pages
+ Tam Su complaint +
PDF, 9 pages
The most amazing part of the story is that, apparently, Leander Hasty
found another job at 1st Playable Productions in New York,
http://www.1stplayable.com/ . I'm suprised any other company was
willing to take the risk. If you ask me he is lucky to be alive.
- Dear Wayne,
I believe treating employees well is a good idea.
My employees appreciate my attitude.
Spent the last five months being productive,
- On 9/16/06, D. J. Cline <djcline01@...> wrote:
> Dear Wayne,If you're wondering why it's taken me so long to reply to this, aside
> I believe treating employees well is a good idea.
> My employees appreciate my attitude.
> Do yours?
> Spent the last five months being productive,
from the fact that I'm generally not fast responding, it's because I
wrote a long and detailed reply, found I'd said too many things you
can't say, threw it away, started over, again found I said too many
things you can't say, again threw it away, again started over, did
that 3 times and then on the 4th time realized, I just wasn't going
to be able to answer this. In fact, I've already posted a too much on
this list that can get me into trouble, so I'd better shut up.
What sucks is that your message implies that I'm a mean-spirited
person advocating employee abuse. Since I can't answer, I'm just
going to have to live with that.
Anyway, since I can't say anything, I figured instead I'd give you
this essay I found on what you can't say:
+ What You Can't Say +
Since in the modern world, money is the fundamental organizing
principle of society, most of what you can't say centers around money