Online activists have managed to get another tech boss to lose his job. Gurbaksh Chahal, founder of two online advertising startups and digital marketing company RadiumOne, became the subject of intense pressure from online activists after being fined for domestic violence.
According to his blog, the incident in question was that legal case began when he discovered that his girlfriend was having unprotected sex for money with other people. He apparently lost his temper and they had what he called a normal argument. She called 911 after he threatened to tell her dad. Anyway he claims he didn’t hit her 117 times, injure her, or cause any trauma. Well, other than to imply to the rest of the world that she was a prostitute on his blog. The fact that the whole thing was caught on video tape and the 117 figure comes from assessment of a video of the incident. Fortunately, for Chahal his lawyer was able to prevent the video being used as evidence because it was obtained without a proper warrant.
Without the video evidence, he was eventually fined $500 and accepted two lesser charges of misdemeanours. The blogosphere and social media have erupted with anti-Chahal bile because his fight over admissibility of the video evidence did not really gel with someone who was actually innocent. After all if he had not been violent we would have thought the video should have cleared him not be the make plank of the prosecution case. Now it seems that the complaints on the web grew so loud that the RadiumOne Board asked him to step down. He refused and the board fired him.
Chahal wrote in his blog: “This week, social media became the court of public opinion and decided to grow a life of its own. Similar to the Mozilla CEO debacle, each day-by-day it got worse. People can’t look at the facts in 140 characters so they start to believe all of the falsified exaggerated allegations. They can only choose to hate. Prominent social media bloggers such as Kara Swisher turned this into a social issue. That ended up making things viral.”
Chahal said that this was not what “real entrepreneurism” or venture capitalism is about. He said that in his last startup he made individuals over 800 per cent on their investment.
“Whatever happened to real ethics? What happened integrity? Whatever happened supporting your CEO during the tough times knowing the truth? Or is just a fabrication of today’s society of greed at all costs,” he said.
We are not sure of his logic here. It appears he is saying that real entrepreneurism is all about making cash, but at the same time upset about ethics and integrity when he was convicted in a domestic violence case.