Dubbed by our own Brownlee as "one of the greatest fuck ups in hardware history", Microsoft's Xbox 360 failures — the storied "Red Ring of Death" — has cost the company a billion dollars in repair expenses and quite possibly one talented executive. Reporter Dean Takahashi wrote a fantastic investigate piece chronicling the failure — and now his prime source, Robert Delaware, is being fired (fair enough) and sued (harsh!).
From Takahashi, writing for VentureBeat:
Delaware, a 29-year-old Seattle resident, expects to face civil charges from his former employer VMC (which tests games for Microsoft) and Microsoft as well. He will likely have to hire a lawyer. Microsoft spokesman David Dennis said the company does not talk about personnel issues.
"I don't regret it," he said in a phone call on Thursday. "I'll fight it. If they want to come after me, bring it on."
A commenter on VB fairly sums up my feelings on the matter, provided Delaware's information is accurate:
True that violation of an NDA is obvious grounds for termination, but it should be equally important to note that when someone puts their livelihood on the line to become a whistle blower they automatically deserve a fair amount of credibility. And, lets be clear, while there is a lot of people who will report similar things anonymously, it takes a lot of guts to put your name and reputation on the line, people like this should be commended.
Microsoft fires game test contractor who talked to VentureBeat [VentureBeat.com]
Image: Andrew Burgess