INTEL IS BOASTING about being chosen from over 10,000 global companies as one of the 99 firms "recognised for its ethical business standards" by the Ethisphere Institute.
Ethisphere says it received a record number of nominations this year from firms in over 100 countries and across 35 industries. Of those, only 99 purportedly made the cut, of which Intel, a company regularly accused of antitrust, tax evasion and attempting to monopolise markets, was a lucky winner. Yes, we also spluttered our morning coffee all over the computer screen when we read the press release.
But Ethisphere reckons it's done some pretty complex moral math to come up with the selection, taking into account corporate citizenship and responsibility, corporate governance, 'nnovation contributing to public well-being, 'ndustry leadership, executive leadership and tone from the top, Legal, regulatory and reputation track record, internal systems and ethics/compliance programmes.
"Legal, regulatory and reputation track record", eh? AMD employees must be wetting themselves as they read this.
According to Ethisphere, the prestigious award is all about, "recognising organisations that promote ethical business standards and practices by going beyond legal minimums, introducing innovative ideas benefiting the public and forcing their competitors to follow suit." Maybe they meant 'forcing their competitors to file law suits'.
Executive Director of the Ethisphere Institute, Alex Brigham, said "operating as an ethical leader requires a significant commitment from companies that goes beyond lip service and demands real action and change." He added, "The companies on this year's list have demonstrated an understanding that ethical practices are not only necessary, but can support a stronger and more solid business overall."
Strange then, Mr Brigham, that Intel – a company sued left, right and centre for unfair business practices, which does its utmost to stomp out any hint of competition (see Japan, Korea, Europe) with a chief executive earning $12.7 million a year but professing sadness at having to lay off between 6,000 and 8,000 of his staff – should find itself on that list.
If you want our INQpinion, Intel probably nominated itself for the award and forced all its minimum wage-earning Chinese fab workers to vote three times each. Or maybe the firm used its regular tactic of bribing the committee with rebates on Intel CPUs?
Other holier-than-thou tech Mother Theresa's include HP, Dell, Xerox, Oracle, Symantec, Texas Instruments, Freescale Semiconductor, Cisco, Google, Vodafone and T-Mobile. µ
A full list is available at www.ethisphere.org/wme2009
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