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BOFH: Attack of the Global Corporate Overlords

Chaos at Mission Central

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'Cock' is OK, 'Fat" is OK. 'Fat Cock', however ...

That afternoon the PFY and I look through the staff handbook and website.

"Ooh," the PFY says, leaning back on his chair as he peruses my copy of the handbook. "We have to carry our ID cards at all times, along with three cards with the company's core values and principles, a card with the health and safety coordinators of every floor, a card with the location of fire extinguishers and first aid kits in the buildings, a card with our medical information and contact people and a card for what to do in an emergency."

"An emergency like what to do it we get a hernia from carrying all the cards around for instance," I say. "We're all going to have to do online training – including a test – on workplace harassment ..."

"I've nailed that one already!" the PFY says.

"No, the training's on how it's not permitted."

"Ah."

"We also have to do one on corporate standards – ie, how we communicate with our clients, how we talk to our co-workers, how to handle complaints against ourselves and co-workers."

"I'm guessing there's no cattle prod in the multichoice options."

"Nope. There’s a module on client interaction and entertainment."

"Don't tell me, getting them trashed and pushing them into Soho with a fistful of fifties in their pocket is out?"

"Indeed. And there's a module on appropriate online behaviour, proper use of workplace browsing and email as well as appropriate social networking commentary and the fine line between personal and company business. AND a list of words that can't be used, or used in conjunction with each other."

"Conjunction?"

"Yeah. So in theory the word 'cock' may come up in a conversation about chickens, and the word 'fat' might come up in a discussion about various client-server installations – but the words fat and cock would never be juxtaposed in a company conversation."

"Ah. Well that all sounds pretty depressing," the PFY says.

"I agree that at first glance we're selling ourselves up the river to a soulless corporate who probably regards its people in much the same light as The Matrix did, but on the upside you're looking at a 20 per cent bonus and a stack of other benefits which really do tend to weigh down in favour of the merger."

"So you're saying we go for it?"

"Indeed I am – 20 per cent more dosh and 0 per cent more work sounds like a bargain! Throw in all the meals and travel and it's a no brainer."

"Ok, where do I sign?!"

"You don't. We just schedule a videoconference with their team and they'll step through the due diligence of our systems and networks prior to rubberstamping the technical infrastructure and passing it up the chain."

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