Now that Scott Thompson’s been forced out as Yahoo’s CEO for claiming a computer-science degree he never earned, what will his defenders say?
We’re thinking specifically of eBay CEO John Donahoe, who declared himself “Scott’s biggest fan” last week and expressed hopes that Thompson would keep his job and keep turning Yahoo around.
Donahoe also told reporters that Thompson’s biography was correct in legal filings but not in public-relations materials—including, for example, a page we found still live on eBay’s Singapore site last week.
Someone at eBay had to know about the error on Thompson’s bio going back years.
Was the fake degree possibly kept quiet because eBayers were aware that Donahoe was, as he put it, Thompson’s “biggest fan”? Or because it suited eBay’s purposes at the time?
Also, how did eBay hire a senior executive who apparently submitted a false résumé to the executive-search firm that placed him?
It’s not enough for eBay to declare its hands clean and move on. It owes investors and other stakeholders a full explanation of its role, from Donahoe on down, in the Thompson matter.
We asked eBay spokesman John Pluhowski for comment on Thompson’s departure and eBay’s investigation of his bio. We haven’t heard back yet but we’ll update this story if we do.
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