Labels are shorthand. Does the person using the label mean the same thing as you do?
“For Some Bonds, It’s Too Easy Being Green,” The Wall Street Journal, August 20, 2018 B1. A quarter of Chinese bonds marketed as green bonds were rejected by “a de facto watchdog for the market” as not really being environmentally friendly.
On the Internet, no one knows you’re a dog. In the world of finance, who validates your dogness? What does it say about a company that tells fibs about the greenness of their bonds?
Are labels inherently suspect? Or inherently believable?
How does one control speech in the public forum without encroaching upon fundamental freedoms?
“On Social Media, a Battle Is Brewing Between Bots and Trolls,” The Wall Street Journal, August 11, 2018 B7. Blocking some speech and some speakers would be bad if the government did it. But is it better if private companies do it, especially when they have pervasive power over the communications streams currently in use?
There’s battle brewing, indeed. Are the Facebooks and Googles of the world mere utilities getting paid solely for carrying content from all comers, with no power (or financial interest?) over the content they carry, or are they publishers with some accountability? If the technology tools they use to screen out the “bad” stuff (terrorists, for example) also screen out unpopular (to someone) speech, who pays damages?
If a company is quasi-governmental, shouldn’t it be subject to quasi-constitutional limitations?
This seems to me to be Governance, Compliance, and Information.
Filed under Access, Accuracy, Communications, Compliance, Compliance (General), Controls, Corporation, Data quality, Duty, Governance, Government, Internal controls, Third parties
The prior post was about what you say and in what medium. So’s this one.
“SEC Probes Musk Tweets On Possible Tesla Buyout,” The Wall Street Journal, August 9, 2018 A1. Were Elon Musk’s tweets about having lined up financing for a buyout false or misleading? The SEC may want to know.
So, is information false or misleading? I thought we had freedom of speech? And (altogether too much) freedom to tweet?
Falsely shouting fire in a crowded theater is still a bad thing (thank you, Justice Holmes). As is misleading your shareholders.
Should a CEO of a listed company know better? Loose lips sink ships.
Filed under Accuracy, Communications, Compliance, Compliance (General), Controls, Corporation, Definition, Duty, Employees, Governance, Information, Internal controls, Investor relations
“Hiring Hazard: Social Media,” The Wall Street Journal, August 6, 2018 B1. What happens when you hire (or don’t hire) someone with a “history” of social media postings, some of which may now (or then, or both) be viewed as objectionable?
An editorial writer for a major newspaper is found to have written some racist comments. A director gets booted from Disney for old tweets. Major league ball players get shamed.
Do the Europeans have it right? Do you have a right to be forgotten? Or are you stuck with what you said or wrote years ago, provided that it is preserved electronically? You did say it, in preservable format.
Is this Governance (or self-governance)? O the nature of Information? Or Compliance with ever-evolving social mores?
The value of information can be calculated in multiple ways, from multiple viewpoints.
“My Boss Makes What? (Employees Work Harder If They Know),” The Wall Street Journal, August 6, 2018 R1. Salary transparency makes people work harder.
Is what you make “private”? Should it be? Whose interests are served by keeping this information private? Who owns it, you or your employer? Do anyone have a duty to keep this private? Why would your employer want this kept quiet? To avoid Sally complaining that she works harder/better/faster/quieter than Sue, and should be paid more? Or to keep a competitor enticing Sally away?
Ask yourself why you want to keep your salary private. Sure, you don’t want marketing agencies targeting you because you’re wealthy, but they probably can approximate your salary anyway.
Filed under Access, Accuracy, Communications, Controls, Corporation, Culture, Duty, Employees, Governance, Information, Internal controls, Managers, Ownership, Privacy, Third parties, Value
Knowledge, or lack thereof, is often a good defense.
“Fiat Says It Didn’t Know CEO was Ill,” The Wall Street Journal, July 27, 2018 B1. Company says privacy of health care information meant they didn’t know that their CEO had been sick for a year.
Who knew or should have known? Was this insider information that would affect the value of investments?
Should the Board have known? Did the CEO have a duty to disclose? For more than a year!
Governance, Compliance, and Information. All in one. Add a dash of privacy.
Filed under Access, Accuracy, Board, Communications, Compliance, Compliance (General), Compliance Verification, Controls, Corporation, Directors, Duty, Employees, Governance, Inform market, Inform shareholders, Internal controls, Investor relations, Oversight, Privacy, To report, Uncategorized
“Read This Extremely Important, Totally Incomprehensible, Completely Convoluted Information About Your Broker!” The Wall Street Journal, July 28, 2018 B1. Confusion over required SEC disclosures.
A four-page summary. But will people read it? Will most people read more than 4 bullet points? Unless, of course, there’s a prize.
What value is disclosure if it is in language that the average person won’t read or won’t understand if he/she does?
Governance or Information? And a pinch of Compliance?
Filed under Accuracy, Communications, Controls, Corporation, Data quality, Duty, Governance, Information, Internal controls, Investor relations, Third parties, Value