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Is Jim Ryan finished?


Sarlaccfood
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The guy has a real skill for putting his foot in his mouth. I can't speak to his suitability for the job more broadly as I've no insight into his actual efficacy, but he has a public track record of abysmal communication. You'd think expertise in this area would be a requirement for CEOs at this point, although I suppose we have copious evidence to the contrary.

 

That said, it's hard for me to get too angry about an e-mail I haven't read. For example there's a pretty significant difference between respecting differences of opinion on abortion itself and utilising that same phrase in relation to abortion rights: living your own life considering abortion to be 'wrong' is one thing, saying women shouldn't have the choice is quite another. Not that I want to be too charitable to Ryan, but I'm wary of the link to women's rights being drawn by Bloomberg as opposed to the actual quotes; context could be the difference between bumbler and bad actor.

 

Whatever the case it's an awful e-mail and I've no idea why he even broached the subject if vague conciliations are all he had to offer. Whilst cowardly I can understand a big company not wanting to take a stand on societal issues that aren't directly relevant to their core business – although obviously such things will affect their workers – but if that's the case it's probably best for everyone that you don't say anything at all.

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So I’m reading speculation there was maybe some heated arguments happening in the office and he was trying to calm people down. But how can you ever ever think it’s a good idea to include the following in the same email as discussing women’s rights?

 

"dogs really are man’s best friend, they know their place, and perform useful functions like biting burglars and chasing balls that you throw for them."

 

:doh:

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Jim Ryan isn't finished because of this. There are plenty of CEOs who write shit emails around (most of them). Him telling his staff to respect each other's opinions is an appropriate CEO response to his US staff on a subject that has been a critical political battleground for decades regardless of the current round of arguments that's going on.

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3 hours ago, Sarlaccfood said:

So I’m reading speculation there was maybe some heated arguments happening in the office and he was trying to calm people down. But how can you ever ever think it’s a good idea to include the following in the same email as discussing women’s rights?

 

"dogs really are man’s best friend, they know their place, and perform useful functions like biting burglars and chasing balls that you throw for them."

 

:doh:

 

Well, I mean he's got a solid point about the dogs. The rest of the stuff, not so much.

 

I think in general he's been an absolutely abysmal head of Sony entertainment. Every time I see him talk he comes across as a man who thoroughly hates talking about gaming and has no idea what the fuck he's doing. Every single decision the company seems to make at the moment is a backwards step compared to the PS4 era. 

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1 hour ago, Pelekophoros said:

Jim Ryan isn't finished because of this. There are plenty of CEOs who write shit emails around (most of them). Him telling his staff to respect each other's opinions is an appropriate CEO response to his US staff on a subject that has been a critical political battleground for decades regardless of the current round of arguments that's going on.

Until you take the bold and revolutionary step of imagining how it will actually feel for the women who work under him to read that email.

 

Saying nothing isn't great at key moments in determining human rights. But it would have been better than this 

 

Edit: on whether it will damage him personally - what he's said is in line with right wing arguments, not the neutral view of a CEO looking to provide for his employees' well-being. If you don't understand that you don't understand the political debate around abortion rights.

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The email seems badly misjudged, but it's essentially saying "please don't have massive stand-up fights with each other about this." If you have massive arguments kicking off about this in your company, then it must be a tricky situation because you've got strong religious beliefs on one side, and a strong human rights issue on the other. Obviously, one side is correct, but as the head of the company, you would have to address the behaviour rather than the underlying belief.

 

The text seems pretty poorly worded, but the underlying message is "Please try and get along with each other". Bungie handled this magnificently in their external messaging, but I bet Bungie will have sent out similar messages internally - i.e. we believe this, but don't abuse people - although I also bet they were a lot more sensitively worded. And probably involved actual direct contact, rather than mass emails.

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4 hours ago, Pelekophoros said:

Jim Ryan isn't finished because of this. There are plenty of CEOs who write shit emails around (most of them). Him telling his staff to respect each other's opinions is an appropriate CEO response to his US staff on a subject that has been a critical political battleground for decades regardless of the current round of arguments that's going on.

Our CEO sent a global email telling people that if they were like Amy Cooper we don't want them in the firm. 

 

But I agree that if the email was just 'respect each others' views on this subject' then that's not a bad thing. You can't tell your employees how to think. What you probably should be doing is inviting managed conversations about the impact on people that the changes could have on communities and people. 

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Where does it stop though? What about someone's deeply held religious belief that all gay people are scum? Or that black people are uncivilised lazy drug dealers that the police are well within their rights to give a good battering to?

 

Appeasement, being reasonable and talking to these people has got us nowhere. This bullshit needs calling out for what it is - and if you're on the (wrong) right wing side why the heck should we just keep our heads down and tolerate it?

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If someone wants to initiate a stand up fight because someone tells them that they have no right to abort a pregnancy, let's say, that will likely kill them if brought to term, then, then fair fucking play to them.

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2 hours ago, jonny_rat said:

Until you take the bold and revolutionary step of imagining how it will actually feel for the women who work under him to read that email.

 

Saying nothing isn't great at key moments in determining human rights. But it would have been better than this 

 

Edit: on whether it will damage him personally - what he's said is in line with right wing arguments, not the neutral view of a CEO looking to provide for his employees' well-being. If you don't understand that you don't understand the political debate around abortion rights.

 

 

You'll note I simply stated he isn't finished, and that there are plenty of CEOs who write shit emails. I've not offered any commentary on how women who work for him may feel - regardless of their views on abortion.

 

7 minutes ago, Kirby said:

Where does it stop though? What about someone's deeply held religious belief that all gay people are scum? Or that black people are uncivilised lazy drug dealers that the police are well within their rights to give a good battering to?

 

Appeasement, being reasonable and talking to these people has got us nowhere. This bullshit needs calling out for what it is - and if you're on the (wrong) right wing side why the heck should we just keep our heads down and tolerate it?

 

I think you're shifting goalposts here with needless hand wringing - there's no need to move the argument from this current and relevant debate to another one.

 

You don't have to tolerate it, nobody has argued that. Stop buying Sony products.

 

 

 

14 minutes ago, Lovelyman said:

Our CEO sent a global email telling people that if they were like Amy Cooper we don't want them in the firm. 

 

But I agree that if the email was just 'respect each others' views on this subject' then that's not a bad thing. You can't tell your employees how to think. What you probably should be doing is inviting managed conversations about the impact on people that the changes could have on communities and people. 

 

 

Again, I think the core argument there is shifting goal posts. My employer told any racist customers to fuck off into the sun, very overtly. It's possible for an organisation to be overtly anti-this terrible thing whilst struggling to understand the stance it should take on this other terrible thing because it's a more difficult social argument. And it can struggle to do that whilst telling its employees "this is work, leave your shit at the door".

 

I mean, that in itself is a stance and a statement - "We don't care about this debate, you are here to do your job and make money" is definitely a moral framework you can measure your employer against.

 

 

 

 

 

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33 minutes ago, Kirby said:

Where does it stop though? What about someone's deeply held religious belief that all gay people are scum? Or that black people are uncivilised lazy drug dealers that the police are well within their rights to give a good battering to?

 

Appeasement, being reasonable and talking to these people has got us nowhere. This bullshit needs calling out for what it is - and if you're on the (wrong) right wing side why the heck should we just keep our heads down and tolerate it?

 

People are perfectly free to think those things, you can't regulate your employee's thoughts. The problem comes when they're aired in public, or in the workplace. Religious beliefs are protected to a certain extent, so those two examples you give aren't quite the same thing - you don't have a right to be racist, but you do have a certain amount of latitude to think, say homosexuality is wrong or that people shouldn't accept blood transfusions when being operated on.

 

The issue is when and how those views are shared. I think it's possible to discuss these things in a respectful way, although it's obviously very difficult given it's such an emotive topic. Someone who is devoutly religious and is opposed to abortion on those grounds could have a reasonable conversation with someone who was pro-choice. And the goal at Sony isn't to solve the problems around the right to safe abortion through direct confrontation of their employees, their goal is to stop arguments and fights disrupting the working environment and upsetting their employees. Which they've not done a very good job at, seemingly.

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6 minutes ago, Pelekophoros said:

 

 

You'll note I simply stated he isn't finished, and that there are plenty of CEOs who write shit emails. I've not offered any commentary on how women who work for him may feel - regardless of their views on abortion.

 

 

I think you're shifting goalposts here with needless hand wringing - there's no need to move the argument from this current and relevant debate to another one.

 

You don't have to tolerate it, nobody has argued that. Stop buying Sony products.

 

 

 

 

 

Again, I think the core argument there is shifting goal posts. My employer told any racist customers to fuck off into the sun, very overtly. It's possible for an organisation to be overtly anti-this terrible thing whilst struggling to understand the stance it should take on this other terrible thing because it's a more difficult social argument. And it can struggle to do that whilst telling its employees "this is work, leave your shit at the door".

 

I mean, that in itself is a stance and a statement - "We don't care about this debate, you are here to do your job and make money" is definitely a moral framework you can measure your employer against.

 

 

 

 

 

I mean, yes, I think this confirms that you've fundamentally misunderstood what this is all about. Abortion rights - and the current context - isn't a clash of views. It's a portion of your workforce having a fundamental right removed from them. You do not fucking tell people to leave that shit at the door. Under no circumstances. And you don't go on to talk nicey nice about your dogs immediately after doing just that. 

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I mean, it is an opinion you can have, that human life begins at conception. It mightn't be rational, it might be based on religion, but you can't say it isn't an opinion. That said, Jim Ryan might be better off being a bit more oblique in his emails,

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8 minutes ago, jonny_rat said:

I mean, yes, I think this confirms that you've fundamentally misunderstood what this is all about. Abortion rights - and the current context - isn't a clash of views. It's a portion of your workforce having a fundamental right removed from them. You do not fucking tell people to leave that shit at the door. Under no circumstances. And you don't go on to talk nicey nice about your dogs immediately after doing just that. 

 

I fully "understand what this is all about", thanks, and specifically said that their stance is a moral framework they can be measured against. Which is what you are then doing.

 

I haven't offered any commentary at all on the debate in the US around abortion rights, except to point out it hasn't been settled. Which is clearly accurate, given this conversation and what's potentially happening with Roe Vs Wade.

 

 

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Just now, SozzlyJoe said:

I mean, it is an opinion you can have, that human life begins at conception. It mightn't be rational, it might be based on religion, but you can't say it isn't an opinion. That said, Jim Ryan might be better off being a bit more oblique in his emails,

If you have that opinion but don't actually believe in removing abortion rights, then that's a discussion that can be navigated. I will make an assumption here however and call that an extreme edge case.

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Just now, Pelekophoros said:

 

I fully "understand what this is all about", thanks, and specifically said that their stance is a moral framework they can be measured against. Which is what you are then doing.

 

I haven't offered any commentary at all on the debate in the US around abortion rights, except to point out it hasn't been settled. Which is clearly accurate, given this conversation and what's potentially happening with Roe Vs Wade.

 

 

You have very much offered commentary on the debate on your assessment of how Ryan has attempted to deal with it.

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Just now, jonny_rat said:

You have very much offered commentary on the debate on your assessment of how Ryan has attempted to deal with it.

 

Hmmm. Bit of over reaching there, really. Could you be more overt about what you think my views are please, before I reply to imagined or implied things?

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