Employee Anti-Poaching Agreements May Extend Far Beyond Apple and Google

Apple, Google and five other large technology companies were caught signing "no solicitation" agreements that prevented the companies from trying to hire away each others' employees. Court documents newly obtained by Pando Daily suggest these anti-poaching agreements extend far beyond this Silicon Valley seven.

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According to these documents, over a dozen companies and as many as one million employees may have been affected by these secret hiring agreements.

Confidential internal Google and Apple memos, buried within piles of court dockets and reviewed by PandoDaily, clearly show that what began as a secret cartel agreement between Apple’s Steve Jobs and Google’s Eric Schmidt to illegally fix the labor market for hi-tech workers, expanded within a few years to include companies ranging from Dell, IBM, eBay and Microsoft, to Comcast, Clear Channel, Dreamworks, and London-based public relations behemoth WPP. All told, the combined workforces of the companies involved totals well over a million employees.

Investigation into these wage-fixing deals focused on Adobe, Apple, Google, Intel, Intuit, Lucasfilm and Pixar, but other businesses such as NVIDIA, British cable company Virgin Media and even recruiting agencies were caught up in this net. Some of these other companies did not sign reciprocal non-solicitation agreements, but, instead, were added by Google and others to "Do Not Cold Call" or similar "Sensitive" company lists.

Google and Apple allegedly signed one of the first wage-fixing agreements in early 2005, with other companies following suit. The discovery of these agreements in 2009 initiated a Department of Justice investigation that resulted in the dissolution of these restrictive hiring deals. A subsequent class-action civil suit was filed in 2011 and is expected to go to trial in May.

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Top Rated Comments

gnipgnop Avatar
134 months ago
Emblematic of the corporate age we're living in. At the same time that people who have a hard time finding jobs are being told to "go back to school and get a skill that's in demand", the people that have those "in demand" skills are having their wages systematically suppressed by some of the world's largest and most profitable companies.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DipDog3 Avatar
134 months ago
Just imagine what wages could have been if they weren't being held artificially low by these agreements...
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
wiz329 Avatar
134 months ago
Why on earth does this kind of thing take 5 YEARS to go to trial?
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Sky Blue Avatar
134 months ago
This wouldn't have happened if Steve was still... oh, wait.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tasset Avatar
134 months ago
I don't get all bent out if shape on this honestly. Is it not logical that the highest net worth company pay it's major employees the highest? They all helped make it the highest net worth company and are rewarded for it. I dunno, maybe I'm crazy...
There's "paying major employees the highest", and then there's paying them such ungodly sums at the expense of hundreds or thousands of lower level engineers. It's pretty hard to justify paying those amounts to the high profile execs and then turn into Scrooge McDuck when it's time to pay others. It's analogous to the individual who buys a $700 iPhone and then hems and haws whether that $1.99 is worth it or should wait for it to go free.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tasset Avatar
134 months ago
Just imagine what wages could have been if they weren't being held artificially low by these agreements...

Meanwhile no such wage ceiling at the executive level. Truly vomit-worthy.
https://www.macrumors.com/2014/03/05/apple-executive-bonuses/
https://www.macrumors.com/2013/07/26/apple-cfo-peter-oppenheimer-sells-16-4-million-in-aapl-stock/
https://www.macrumors.com/2013/06/26/jeff-williams-and-bruce-sewell-cash-in-apple-stock-worth-nearly-15-million/
https://www.macrumors.com/2013/08/27/tim-cook-and-eddy-cue-exercise-stock-options-cue-nets-over-12-million/
https://www.macrumors.com/2013/04/15/apple-executives-dominate-highest-paid-list-among-sp-500-companies/
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)