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Old 29th May 2007, 04:33 PM   #1
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Default Moonlighting Perils - Blogging May Cost You Your Job

At the Small Business Trends web site, Anita published a post titled: The Perils Of The Side Business. Anita points out that there may be some dangers to moonlighting that could affect your nine to five employment.

In this post, an entrepreneur by the name of Hasan Luongo, the Founder of PromoterForce, recently learned this the hard way. His horror story is one that bears repeating. Have a read and see what you think.

Hasan made the mistake of publishing to his blog during work hours - only about 1-2 per week. Five months later, he was called into the office and terminated immediately. But here's where it gets interesting. . . .his employer is now laying claim and pursuing ownership to the intellectual property of the site under the conditions of his employment contract.

Anita points out that there are agreements to keep in mind with regards to this:

. . .you may be required to sign a “no conflict” or “no moonlighting” agreement. Another pitfall is an agreement named something like “assignment of intellectual property.
In light of this, the only real way to protect yourself with regards to this is as Anita suggests. . .get written permission from your employer.

What do you think? Should Hasan have been terminated and subjected to possibly loosing his startup?

I, personally, believe his employer is a bit out of line. I feel the termination itself was harsh, maybe your employees creativity and bright mind could have been discussed in a meeting instead. The pursuit of the IP of the site is really out of line in my opinion. . . .

Staci Wood | Small Business Trends Radio | Small Business Trends
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Old 29th May 2007, 05:49 PM   #2
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Absolutely 100% within their rights to claim ownership and IPO of the work carried out while under their PAID employ. While at work, you work for the company. Simple as that really.

I have a client who works for one of my other clients. When I was approached by the employee, I told him to get the owner of the company to confirm his knowledge to me. He did.

I have refused 100% to discuss ANYTHING with the second client during working hours when he is at work, or on his company mobile, or via company email. Harsh maybe but that is the way I play it.

Both parties know the score, and both parties are now happier it is like this.

Old Bald & Stupid, but more than compensated for by being born Welsh.
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Old 30th May 2007, 11:04 AM   #3
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I would have to agree with Old Welsh Guy. Company time should be spent on company work. If you want to do other things on the side, do them on your time.

I do think though that the company should have given him a warning first. If he continued to moonlight on their time, then termination would be justified.

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Old 1st June 2007, 12:23 AM   #4

Join Date: May 2007
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This was some really interesting reading. I feel bad for Hasan, but written permission from his employer makes a lot of sense to me, after all, Hasan was on his employers clock. Termination was a little harsh, written warning would have been better, especially after being with this company for three years. A lot of good can sometimes come out of a lot of bad. Wish Hasan a lot of luck.

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