November 4, 2004 5:38 PM PST

Workplace blues in election aftermath

Software programmer Sandy McReynolds didn't attend to his tasks cheerfully Wednesday--not after George W. Bush won re-election.

"I was in an absolutely foul mood," McReynolds, a Berkeley, Calif. resident, said Thursday. "I got some work done yesterday, but I was grumbling and bitching and moaning."

As in other industries throughout the country, strong feelings surrounding Tuesday's election spilled into technology world workplaces Wednesday and Thursday. Given the concentration of technology workers in settings such as the San Francisco Bay Area, the Seattle region and Boston--all areas that voted for Sen. Kerry, according to a USA Today map of county voting--it's likely that McReynolds was far from alone in his grumbling.

For instance, the entire San Francisco office of recruiting company Coit Staffing needed a pep talk Wednesday. All 15 members of the office had voted for Kerry, said Tim Farrelly, president of the company, which serves clients in technology, biotechnology and other fields. "It was such a somber mood all day yesterday," Farrelly said. "We had a company meeting. We had to pump each other up."

Richard Blish, a computer chip reliability specialist at Advanced Micro Devices, said his productivity suffered on Election Day. "I absolutely couldn't concentrate," said Blish, who works in Sunnyvale, Calif. "I went to an off-site meeting and made three wrong turns getting there."

Blish--who is critical of Bush's leadership on a number of fronts, including the Iraq war--said he's angry, disappointed and frustrated that Kerry lost the election. But he's managed to be effective on the job the past two days. Working has been a way to forget about his feelings, he said.

It's not just strong Kerry supporters that have been blue since Tuesday. George Gilbert, a principal at consulting company Tech Strategy Partners, reluctantly voted for the Democratic candidate. "I may be a lifelong Republican," Gilbert said. "But I don't want to see us radicalize the entire Muslim world or run up foreign debt (so) that we can't even service it." At work Wednesday, Gilbert said, "I was kind of glum."

But not everyone in technology has been dragging. Some leaders in the field, including Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina and Cisco Systems CEO John Chambers, supported the Bush campaign with contributions.

In addition, the CEO of India-based IT services company Tata Consultancy Services--one of a number of companies engaged in the controversial practice of offshore outsourcing--gave Bush a slap on the back Thursday.

"Our hearty congratulations go to President George W. Bush, on winning the election, and we wish him all the best in his second term," S. Ramadorai said in a statement. "We expect that he would continue to provide leadership in the U.S. as a globalizer and bring home the positive outcome of globalization to the U.S. economy."

18 comments

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Give me a break
Why News.com writes these lifestyle stories is beyond me. I'm trying to understand why also they covered the election. Is CNN, MSNBC, and Washingtonpost.com not doing a good enough job?

I guess News.com missed the Elizabeth Edwards breast cancer scoop.

Here is a tip CNET... stick to tech..
Posted by (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
Awwwwwwwwww
Poor, Poor, Poor Workers! Kerry Lost get over it! Plus, you should be angry that your party put up such a pathetic candidate. A two year could have beat Bush!

Wa Wa Wa! Poor me!
Posted by bkedersha (66 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Not Just the workers
I think this is not just a Democratic, or a worker, thing. I think it's a left coast thing. With the margin Kerry won California with, I think he should be sent there to govern.
Posted by (8 comments )
Link Flag
This is a joke - please contact the editors of News.Com!!!
Everyone,
Here is the E-Mail I sent the author of this "article":

Mr. Frauenheim,
How is you article fair at all? 51.5% of the popular vote went to President Bush, yet your article sounds like EVERYONE in IT went to work the next day with Workplace blues in election aftermath (to quote your title). Where is the coverage of the portion of majority of the popular vote that had to work the next day who didnt have the Workplace blues in election aftermath?

Your research seems to comprise of 3 soundbites from liberal firms, which takes up 70% of your article and provides for your dubious title. Then you string together 3 Bush supporters towards the end of your article (on the back page if you will), citing Fiorina and Chambers (who no one likes and control BIG BUSINESS, which furthers your Republicans are in the pocket of big business agenda). Lastly, you quote the token Indian offshoring CEO to further rally the Democratic troops around the Republicans are against the U.S. worker battle cry.

This is such a one-sided article that you should be ashamed of yourself. Your article, if its honest intent was to be a political opinion, should be in the non-existent political editorial section of News.com , not in the Enterprise Software -> WorkPlace section. But Im sure this criticism is falling upon deaf ears.
I will be filing a formal complaint with the News.com editors desk.

Regards,
xxxxxx

ACTION ITEM: Please simply send this E-Mail to the author Ed Frauenheim (Ed.Frauenheim@cnet.com) as well as to the CNet.Com editor in chief
Patrick Houston (Patrick.Houston@cnet.com). If many people send such an E-Mail to the editor in chief (please think of unique subjects so it cannot be easily added to filter rules) then perhaps we can get News.com to place this type of editorial article where it belongs - in the editorial section (oh wait there is none). I also feel that we should all demand an apology from News.com . This type of coastal-centric biased, minimalizing journalism needs to stop, especially when it is presented as a regualr factual article (rather than an editorial).
Posted by bmccaulley (6 comments )
Reply Link Flag
51.5% is whopping number
sure it is. i bet all the people who voted for bush was tech workers. unless you have a certain number for anybody in It who voted for bush, you can't say this article is one sided and unfair. after all, everyone is entitled to their opinion. you can't act like bush by forcing people to support 'your' idea.
Posted by sunnymix (25 comments )
Link Flag
why cnet news publishes this story?
well that's maybe simply because the future of IT field in US is dependent on new policies and judges coming along in the future. for anyone who is sound minded should also be aware of the politics and the consequences of this election.

this story not only nicely sums up how tech workers feel about the election but also sarcastically comment on the congratulating message from the outsourcing company. unless you hold a job that determine what goes into outsourcing, it's absolutely important to anybody who works in this industry.
Posted by sunnymix (25 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Are you serious, sounds minds got Bush re-elected
Judges will have little to do with the progress/success of technology companies in the US. But they will have an impact on the agenda of the political left. Dont try to blur the lines saying Bush is bad for technology, especially on offshoring. In case you dont remember, the Democratic Candidates wife runs a company that extensively utilizes offshoring. Do you think a President Kerry would have made any steps to restrict offshoring through legislation? Think again. The impact he would have had is developing a national government run health care system, which in turn would have prompted small business (e.g. Software/IT firms) to drop their health coverage, (why should they cover their employees, the government covers them now). This would snow ball and drive taxes and deficits through the roof. On top of that, the health care quality would be the equitant to you local post office or department of motors vehicles. Not the environment I want to live in. My 2 cents&..
Posted by (1 comment )
Link Flag
That is why this should be listed in an editorial section...
...instead of the NEWS area (please re-read my original post). That is my main complaint.
I understand the issue of outsourcing (the company I work for unfortunately does it), and I completely agree with you that outsourcing is a scary proposition for all IT workers. What I disagree with is that this has ANYTHING to do with one side or the other. The tone of the last portion of the article clearly leaves the reader with the impression that all Repubicans are pro-outsourcing, and that all American tech jobs will disapper under such an administration (as the by your own admission did for you). Both sides of the political fence need to come together and do something to help protect American jobs from going overseas for the sake of our ENTIRE country.
Posted by bmccaulley (6 comments )
Link Flag
It's because of Silicon Valley.
Notice where the acticle was done at. Silicon Valley. Many who lost their jobs during the internet crash and many development jobs that were outsourced. Some who made $50,000 a year couldn't find a place to live because of the hike in living costs there. Some living in their cars. Gettos turned into valuable property from what I remeber hearing that the peoples that lived there even had to move.

A place where it was the #1 industry just got nocked out by India which is now #1 for at least another 7 years - then after Johanusburg is next.

Legal slave labor economy - working pay check by paycheck here in the US while many took a 50% paycut doing the same thing.

You know this, you read the articles here. It all adds up!
Posted by bradyme (43 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Girly men
Yes girly men. These immature boys are an example of the
problem in the USA amoung democrats. They believe that the
one that holds the office has any bearing on our lives. We
suffered through the embarrassing Clinton years but real men
get on with life and make their way. We don't sit in the office
and have group therapy just to make it throught he week
because Kerry isn't the president. How pathetic. Do you all still
live at home with your mothers too?
Posted by (3 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Let's tone down the rhetoric...
Robert,
You response, while amusing, is part of the problem. Everyone needs to come together on this issue and figure out what the entire government (all 3 branches) can do to help reverse the trend of osshoring. Calling names will only futher the partisan divide and lead to more pointless and fruitless name-calling and finger-pointing. It will NOT solve the problem.
Posted by bmccaulley (6 comments )
Link Flag
Reporter's response
I can understand how readers felt this was a biased story. But I did attempt in the limited time I had to find both Bush and Kerry supporters. I did not know the political leanings of the sources I quoted prior to speaking with them.

I'm eager to expand my list of tech professional sources. If anyone responding to this story is interested in being contacted for future articles, please send me an email at: ed.frauenheim@cnet.com and include your name and phone number.

Thanks,

Ed
Posted by Ed Frauenheim (4 comments )
Reply Link Flag
You tried?
Ed... your only pro-Bush examples were CEOs of major corporations! You should know by now that the liberal left sees themselves as the little guy fighting the big business owner. The example you provided only fuels the left/right division. Pitting the rich against the working class... In a country where the majority of the people voted for Bush, it would be more safe to assume that a majority of the working class also voted for Bush.
Posted by David Arbogast (1709 comments )
Link Flag
... I must have missed your call?
I'm a 25-year-old middle-class Software Engineer for a tiny company (15-employees) in Seattle trying to survive in a market place against competitors funded by massive corporations... On top of that, my job would be one of the first to go if our company turned to outsourcing.

... and I voted for Bush -- based more on his economic policies than anything.

Just because Bush-backers haven't been crying and fussing and whining for 4 years doesn't mean we're not here. And I know a lot of people in the technology industry who were VERY happy on November 3rd.

You can speak with your articles if you wish, we spoke with our vote.
Posted by brasten (33 comments )
Reply Link Flag
 

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