NAI on the block? Nextel off the clock

Rumours are swirling around Network Associates' Santa Clara HQ like a tornado looking for a trailer park. A name change back to McAfee is just the edge of the storm.

I thought I was miserable because of my pitiful love life, but it turns out it’s really just occupational. According to The City & Guilds of London Institute, one in 10 IT workers is unhappy. (The other nine must have been playing Anarchy Online when the survey arrived.) Journalists rank even higher on the misery scale, so I’ve got a double dose. But this week’s gossip haul lifted my spirits.

Winds of change

Rumours are swirling around Network Associates’ Santa Clara HQ like a tornado looking for a trailer park. A name change back to McAfee is just the edge of the storm.

One rumour says NAI is no longer trying to sell Sniffer and will instead spin it off as a new company. Another has NAI/McAfee primping for acquisition by a major player (possibly a nine-letter company located 1370km due north).

Field sales types are reportedly fleeing the company like vermin from a capsized vessel, and other key execs have recently said sayonara.

Meanwhile, windows in the headquarters' strategy room have allegedly been papered over to prevent spies from peeking at their PowerPoints. (NAI won’t comment on any acquisition rumours but firmly denies the window allegations.) If CEO George Samenuk starts showing up for work in Groucho glasses, it may be time to worry.

Don’t tell Nextel

It seems the wireless industry is trying to one-up its PC support brethren. Customers who email support questions to Nextel get a response telling them the company has temporarily extended its normal 48-hour response time to a more leisurely nine days. Interestingly, that’s exactly enough time to completely dismantle your Nextel phone and mail it back to the company’s Virginia offices.

Wear it with pride

Time Warner flatly denies it’s trying to dump AOL in Microsoft’s lap, but I think the deal makes a lot of sense. The Boys From Billville are miffed that SCO is now the Most Despised Technology Company, and this could be a great way to win back the title.

What companies do you despise? Send answers and hot tips to cringe@infoworld.com.

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