If you ever need a reason to be glad we don't do business on a handshake anymore, this cautionary tale ought to do it: Wal-Mart's former video-production company now is selling footage from its meetings. Including some things its execs, former execs, and even a presidential candidate would rather not see in the public eye--but because there never was anything in writing, the company seems to be getting away with it. At least for now. From the article:
- For nearly 30 years, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. employed a video-production company here to capture footage of its top executives, sometimes in unguarded moments. Two years ago, the retailing giant stopped using the tiny company.
At first, the decision threw Flagler Productions Inc. into a panic. Now it's Wal-Mart that's squirming.
In recent months, Flagler has opened its trove of some 15,000 Wal-Mart tapes to the outside world, with an eye toward selling clips. The material is proving irresistible to everyone from business historians and documentary filmmakers to plaintiffs lawyers and union organizers.
Just in case you needed any other excuse to quadruple-check your contract.