Adam Orth Gone? The Personal Price of Bad PR

Adam Orth is reportedly gone from Microsoft now, in case anyone needed more proof that making a PR gaffe like his twitter conversation is a very bad idea.

There was not an immediate sign of Microsoft creative director Adam Orth being punished for the storm of bad press his comments on Twitter about always-online requirements caused.  It appears now as if that lack of information may simply have been a delayed action, rather than a forgiving decision.

Sources inside Microsoft apparently have confirmed that he is no longer with the company.  Whether he resigned on his own or was asked to leave is not known, and the computing giant has refused to comment, in this case entirely understandably.  To quote, "We do not comment on private personnel matters..."

This is something people in the industry and people who simply enjoy its labors both need to take notice of.  Both sides of this bear mention.  On the one hand, Orth's Twitter trolling caused a huge wave of criticism for Microsoft.  It takes a lot of hearsay and bad press to get them to make a formal statement in regards to a single person's personal comments.  On the other hand, it now looks as though someone lost a very good job because of those comments.

Bad PR is serious business, people.  Watch what you say, for your own sake as well as your company's.

Featured Columnist

Writer, gamer, and generally hopeful beneath a veneer of cynicism.

Published Apr. 11th 2013
  • Juna Zell
    Contributor
    Then I couldn't buy an always on console. My Internet cuts out at least twice a day, which would be a real problem if it booted me out of a single player game. I can't deal with that.
  • TheOnlyShaft
    Contributor
    @Juna that's exactly what it means
  • Juna Zell
    Contributor
    Can someone clarify what's "always on" means? I take it to mean that the console won't play games if you aren't online, which would be very bad for me. Or does "always on" mean something else?
  • TheOnlyShaft
    Contributor
    Nah... twitter and facebook are personal. People have a right to speak their mind, troll their friends, and even their enemies too, and while they represent mega-corporations, they're people, too.
  • Juna Zell
    Contributor
    Is Adam Orth even a real person? I was starting to think he was Microsoft's answer to Kevin Butler.
  • Frogdice Fangirl
    We have no idea why he actually got fired, so it's hard to speculate on whether or not MSFT's reaction is extreme.

    For example, they could have spoken to him about his Twitter trolling, and he could have told them all to go stuff their heads in a toilet. If that were the case, then they'd have no recourse but to fire him. (I'm not saying that's what REALLY happened.)

    There's tons of talented people in this world. It's not that hard to find one who has better sense than to troll the entire internet. :D
  • Muckbeast
    Talk about making a bad situation worse...

    His comments: stupid and careless.

    Microsoft's reaction: extreme and foolish.

    I've heard from colleagues that Adam was a very talented guy and incredibly valuable to have on your team. Losing someone like that hurts a company.

    Furthermore, just knowing that you can be fired for this at MSFT is going to make people hesitate before they accept a job there. The competition for talented people is significant. This will hurt MSFT in the long run with potential hires.

    I could see a reprimand or just a firm talking to about what he can and cannot say on social media.

    Then again, who knows. Maybe this is his 20th "reprimand" and they finally had enough.
  • Wokendreamer
    Featured Columnist
    I think if the nextbox does require an internet connection all the time it makes sense. That's something they definitely would've preferred to announce in a very specific way to try and control the negative reaction to it.

    Otherwise I think it is just a very heavy price to pay for what was honestly a very stupid mistake.
  • Stephen Johnston
    Founder
    I would expect him to be reprimanded, but didn't expect him to lose his head over this. Interesting.

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