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Written by Richard Barry, Contributor

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    Story: UK Tech Week: E-mail gossip could land you in court

    Dear Sir,

    >> He adds: "Email is a publication and there are very real risks.

    I believe Robin Bynoe is just plain wrong; he's failing to distinguish between private and public email. Private email is equivalent to a private letter, and is _private_. OTOH a public email, to e.g. a circulation list, _is_ equivalent to an internal memo and constitutes a publication.




    I wish I was plain wrong. Personally I think that it should be possible to distinguish between public and private email. But the lesson of the Norwich Union case is that no employee should assume that any email sent on their employer's system is private.

    The Norwich Union employees probably thought that their communications were private, and they were precisely what cost their employers the best part of £500,000 in damages.

    Internal emails are routinely scrutinised in cases where an employee claims racial or sexual harassment. These are not necessarily emails to or from the employee in question; they are ostensibly private emails within the office which lawyers want to inspect for signs that there was an atmosphere in the firm where racial or sexual abuse could flourish.

    Finally of course many firms now top and tail all emails with wording to say that the communication is from the firm. Mine does. That makes it all the harder even to claim that an email is private.

    As I say, I wish it were not so.

    Robin Bynoe

    Story: Lotus chief says 'no way' to Linux... for now

    Hi there,

    I hate when a company like Lotus doesn't even think about the Linux users who are growing faster then any other Unix variant/flavour, and they don't even think its worth it. If its not worth - why Corel, Informix, IBM, Sybase and other ported their applications, and now Oracle is moving its products to Linux?

    I'm disappointed by Lotus' decision, but once MS will get bigger share -- they'll port it and pray that they'll have a good share. Mark my words :)

    Hetz Ben Hamo

    Dear Sir,

    I think Jeff Papows is missing a great opportunity. If Lotus Notes became available for Linux, I would burn a path to my nearest retailer to buy it. I also do not think I am alone.

    Also, I find the comment "...moving to it (Linux) is too big a risk." to be rather short-sighted in view of the fact that the vast majority of the enterprise Linux users that I have seen are traditional Unix shops here in Silicon Valley that adopted a lower cost desktop workstation than Solaris or HP-UX. They need a desktop platform with native NFS and X-windows. They did not "move to Linux" from NT or Win98, they chose Linux INSTEAD of these platforms.

    They are now using Applixware, StarOffice or Solaris applications with the X display exported to the Linux desktop.

    George Bonser

    Dear Sir,

    If you want to follow up there is a list of comments here on why we want Notes for Linux. Click here.

    Yes It is a risk, but just ask the community "Who is happy with Windows?" (if you know of a survey, I would be interested) Personally I would Like a choice between systems, and IBM has the resources to offer it.

    The risk for IBM would be minuscule compared to OS2 which was a flop. Also, their money put into Red Hat would be only part of the story, success or fail, it would be shared with the other big players.

    Now is the time for Linux, if it is ever going to beat Microsoft.

    James Riley

    Dear Sir,

    Let me get this straight: Lotus is trying to compete with Microsoft Exchange by... wait for it... ONLY releasing their products for Microsoft operating systems?? They are making Microsoft their most important partner by giving them exclusive access to Lotus software, and Microsoft is returning the favour by trying to wipe out Notes with Exchange?

    This is a brain-dead strategy. Larry Ellison is no idiot - he gets the idea that it is important to ATTACK MICROSOFT'S CORE BUSINESS JUST LIKE MICROSOFT IS ATTACKING YOURS.

    You do this by giving PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT to NON-MICROSOFT operating systems. I don't care if this is Linux, the commodore 64, the Macintosh, or Cray or whatever...

    If you do not do this, you will be the next Borland or the next Word Perfect. Mark my words. After Lotus goes out of business, SAP and PeopleSoft are next... wake up folks.

    Mark Lehrer

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