How the OpenSocial story broke
by Charlene Li
Valleywag pointed out that I may have contributed to the New York Times getting the scoop on Google’s OpenSocial announcement. I’ve always believed in transparency, so wanted to set the record straight.
Google’s Joe Kraus briefed me on Monday, October 29th about OpenSocial. At the end of the conversation, I asked when the press embargo and NDA lifted, and I understood it to have lifted last Friday, Oct. 26th. They actually meant THIS Friday, November 2nd.
So when the New York Times called for background on OpenSocial, I unknowingly broke the press embargo. This is something I have never done in my eight+ years as an analyst. I am usually very carefully about asking for and respecting NDAs, and in this case, failed to be crystal clear in my understanding of when the embargo lifted.
The upshot is I contacted Google immediately and told them about my conversation with the Times. They were very understanding, said that they would notify the OpenSocial partners, and stressed that there were no hard feelings.
I feel that I have let down people who trusted me with embargoed information and I’m very sorry to have done so. My goal going forward is to rebuild that trust, so as you can imagine, I’m going to be even more diligent about getting the exact dates/times of embargoes from now on!