Verizon Employee Fired Over Motorola Shadow Leak


Who didn’t see this coming? Verizon wasn’t too keen on the whole “revealing our device before we have a chance to” thing that went down with the Motorola Shadow and decided to take some action. According to Gizmodo’s original tipster, the gym employee that found the lost phone has since been fired.


They say Verizon pulled him into a few meetings to discuss how he found the phone and to discuss what he did with it and how the pictures ended up on the internet. The end result was him being fired and Verizon showing up at his house yesterday (5/26) to take his gym key. It seems like the tipster wasn’t too fond of his friend getting fired, stating that he thought the employee that lost the phone in the first place should’ve been at fault.

All is well as that gym employee was only an intern and his internship was up at the end of this week. Still, he can’t be too happy that his bridge was just burned with the biggest mobile operator in the United States. Stop by Gizmodo for the full transcript.

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. I had two friends who worked for Verizon wireless. That intern should be happy Verizon did him a favor. I hear working for Verizon wireless suuuuuucks

  2. I think it’s pretty ridiculous that people are being fired over nonsense. That phone at most is probably 30 days away from being available to the public. What’s the big deal? Pure insanity.

  3. “Hey kid, thanks for drumming up huge hype about our next big phone release, all those geeks in the internet are drooling so hard that keyboard sales went up 19% across the nation because, as we know, drool & keyboard dont mix. Your little stunt managed to outdo a million bucks worth of regular advertising costs..which we will be taking out of your next paycheck. Oh, and thats your last paycheck. Oh, and we’re taking your accrued vacation time too. YOUR FIRED!!”


  4. its ethics. If it was your Business and your employee willingly shared secret information against company policies, would you just tell him not to do it again and let him keep working at your company? come on.

  5. I wouldn’t want anyone like that working for me.

  6. @VK
    Not to mention the number of people who may have decide to hold off on the Droid Incredible to get the Shadow thanks to the leak.
    I do see Verizon’s point tho. Maybe “some kid brought this in. He said he found it outside.” would’ve been a better alibi.

  7. Wait, are we all now suddenly trusting Gizmodo? I call bunk until I hear from a more reliable source.

  8. Hahaha, industrial espionage is a crime. Whaaaaa, he got fired for essentially being a thief. Serves him right.

  9. I’m with 99% of other people. If you leak company information then you deserved to get fired. I hope he gets asked the question the age old question every time he sits down for an interview, “why did you part ways with your last employer”. What a douche bag.

  10. @Derrick, it’s not nonsense. Employees are hired under a non-disclosure agreement. They’re not allowed to reveal things that have not been publicly disclosed. Uncontrolled release of information can hurt a company’s business, which can screw over a lot of people. And for what? So some guy on a ego trip can show off that he knows a secret? Employees are not supposed to talk about what they know. They are not even supposed to talk about the fact that there is anything to know. That’s not their job, unless they’re in public relations and have been directed to put out a press release.

  11. This kind of thing happens all the time. I was fired for the same exact thing.

  12. Now we know this means a shadow is confirmed… More employees that are willing to leave a company should do this,,it helps consumers know what’s coming and what to purchase ahead of time..Thanks,…

  13. Seriously. your job vs posting a yet unreleased version of a phone to the internet… hmmm. Give up my gym key to post a pic of a phone I’m not supposed to have in my possession. Let me weigh the pros and cons… I get paid to work here, and I have a gym key or I could be unemployed if they ever find out it was me that posted these pics online for free. Oh what the hell… I’ll take door number two Bob!

  14. Nice Donald Trump photo!

  15. Im not complaining about the guy getting fired… I just want to know how it got lost in the first place… So far it sounds like whoever at verizon has the power to get their hands on “top secret” devices doesnt give a damn about their company as they dont put the devices away for safe keeping rather they throw it in their pocket like its a tube of chapstick and then go hit the gym… I’ll bet the dumbass who lost the phone didnt even realize he lost the phone.. instead, he probably didnt say a damn thing and let the story unfold just as it did. “gym employee gets fired rather than the dumbass who lost it”.

    Bottom line is verizon is careless or this wouldnt have happend. Or they placed the phone there on purpose to see if someone would leak it on the web.. either way, im starting to dislike these “lost devices” stories that end up with whoever found it gets accused.. If I found a device that wasnt supposed to be out yet I’d probably fingerprint the damn thing and instead of putting the device on the web I would put the name of whoever lost it on the web to advertize.. just my 2 cents on this matter

  16. I work in law enforcement. I know something about your case and if I leak it the perp on your case might get away. So you wouldn’t be made if I leaked the info would you now? Of course you would and now only that you would want me to lose my job and be prosecuted. I know things all the time that I can’t even tell my immediate family. He probably did it for money. If you’re going to do stupid things it is the chance you take.

  17. By the way lllYo my carelessness does not give you the right to take what belongs to me. That’s called theft and is punishable by prosecution.

  18. I call shenanigans on the Gizmodo info. The pic wasn’t taken in the gym, it looks like it was taken inside the training dept room. Those guys routinely get phones way ahead of others. Most of our gym employee’s are interns, that’s true. But no way could a gym employee walk into the training room in front of at least 5-10 other people and take a photo of that phone.

  19. Correction, I take that all back. It was in the gym. Those phones in the background are used to play music over the p.a. system in the gym. There is a similar setup in the training room to keep things charged for training classes.

  20. @copr165, so true, sensitive information is sensitive information, thats all there is to it.

  21. Just because it was found in the gym doesn’t mean he had to take that photo in the gym, could have stepped in a different room and snapped that shot…
    But honestly 2 hightech never before seen phones magically get lost by their owners?
    I think it’s a publicity stunt… get consumers hyped on Iphone 4g and Motorolla Shadow. People start drooling over the eye candy, and then sales skyrocket…

  22. Employees of manufacturers and carriers often get phones ahead of time as part of a live use trial. They’re authorized to have and use them, though disclosing photos and specs and release dates and such isn’t permitted. They guy who accidentally left the phone in the gym may not be on any list for getting new phones anytime soon due to his carelessness, but so long as he was authorized to possess it and didn’t disclose anything about it, he’s probably not in that much trouble. The intern who wanted to be famous by showing off what he knew got his wish, though I don’t think it was quite the kind of fame he was expecting. He learned the hard way. I’d hope his example can be a cautionary tale for others who think that this can never happen to them, but there are always those who believe they know better.

  23. Actually, the real jerk in the story is the “original tipster.” He’s so upset that he got his friend fired that he’s now telling everyone that his friend was fired, which isn’t doing the guy any favors. Verizon wouldn’t have commented on a firing because it could open them up to legal issues, so the only one airing the intern’s dirty laundry is his “friend.” If I were the intern in question, I’d look for smarter friends.

  24. I just completed a 5 year run with Verizon myself. I can say from experience that this guy got what was coming to him. Every training, online or classroom, the first thing you see is an NDA. In fact, about a week after I stopped working for VZW, I got a reminder in the mail about all of the NDAs I had agreed to while an employee. It’s not as if he didn’t know the consequences.

  25. In the long run the hype is like Bonus Publicity/Advertising. If review shows a weakness in design they can possibly tweak revision earlier. Believe sales actually bounced up. Don’t see any harm, if you phone dies you replace with what’s currently available.
    If a customer were on the fence ATT – Verizon tips the scale Verizon possibly. so droid’s not a one hit wonder. Gotta keep information & security in control also though.

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