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Letter Mr. Vance:

I was deeply troubled by your column in the Register titled “Sun zinged by rent-a-quote analyst”.

It is perhaps Ironic that this is all happening as while I’m working with the New York TimesLooking at the Free Market, and Seeing Red" to help defend Lenovo from a similar unfounded, and under researched attack. Roger Key* ends that piece with the comment “Facts don’t matter, perceptions matter” which, coincidently, also forms the basis for my complaint about your piece.

While I may be upset about your false statements about my integrity, I am more troubled by your tabloid like approach to this subject. If you do research first, and then form an opinion that opinion will likely have a solid foundation. When you do it the other way around bad things can happen like outing a CIA operative and going to war in Iraq. When folks like you don’t do their jobs, particularly recently, really bad things have happened.

Fact checking is still a valuable part of your industry. That isn’t to say I disagree with you about reforms. You only have to go here to conclude something is really broken in my industry. But you can also go here and see that yours has issues as well. What is ironic is I’m trying to help fix my industry. Perhaps if you focused more on correcting your own practices we could both improve things.

I've never been paid to take a position for or against a company and it is irresponsible that you even said this without something more then assumption. For most publications that would be a serious problem, you, on the other hand seem to think it is funny. You also now know that both Ziff Davis and Business Week, along with virtually every large research firm, participate in these councils you claim bias me as well and a little research would have cleared up what we do and why they aren’t a problem. These councils are on PCs and have nothing to do with Sun which isn’t even in that business.

You feel I talk to too many reporters, I wonder why you think you need to approve who I talk to? They are kind of like family and because I don’t work for a large company anymore they often fill the gap of missed co-workers. It is with a certain amount of pride I answer their questions as truthfully as I can. In the instance you reference the Economist did follow disclosure rules correctly, the Advisory Councils have nothing to do with Sun or Sun products. Maybe you need to read up on disclosure rules.

So you basically made a bunch of stuff up and then you concluded that The Economist misacted. And you think this is some big joke, “amusing” was the word you used in a recent email.  This reeks of censorship and an elitist attitude that implies you don’t have to follow the rules of your industry. Doing complete work is the responsibility of anyone in either of our positions because, when we don’t, we break the trust our readers have in us. For me, I now wonder what else you’ve made up, what other things you didn’t have the time to research and check, and, given you are so incredibly positive about Sun, I also wonder about your personal relationship with that company.

The Economist was required reading for us at Giga and I still view it as one of the most ethical publications in the business. You, of all people, shouldn’t be criticizing their work.

Rob Enderle, Principal Analyst at the Enderle Group

Bootnote

The correct spelling of the analyst's name is Roger Kay

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