08:18 AM

WSJ's Tam: HP went through my garbage

How fun to be a reporter on the HP beat. The Journal's Pui-Wing Tam reports on what she learned about HP's violations of her privacy. (WSJ article, sub required.)

H-P's investigators tried at least five times, he said, to get access to my home-phone, cellphone and office-phone records. In several instances, they succeeded: H-P now has lists of calls I made to people such as my editors, my husband, my insurance company and a reporting source employed by one H-P rival.

H-P's agents had my photo and reviewed videotaped footage of me, said Mr. Schultz, of the law firm of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius. They conducted "surveillance" by looking for me at certain events to see if I would show up to meet an H-P director. (I didn't.) They also carried out "pre-trash inspections" at my suburban home early this year, Mr. Schultz said.

The always edgy Inquirer has this oh so British take:

HP dug out details about her and her husband but might have got their hands dirty by digging in her bins, she said.

If HP's investigators dug too deep into her bins, they might have got their hands soiled by contact with her kid's nappies. Poo!

For an alternative view, Peter Cohan sees HP's investigations as "investigative reporting by other means":

Patricia Dunn must have felt a similar fear when she realized that someone on HP's board was leaking to the media. I'm not defending what HP did; I think it's a 1984-like invasion of privacy for which HP will suffer significant consequences.

With deference to Prussian General Von Clausewitz -- who famously said war is "a continuation of politics by other means" -- I see HP's tactics as investigative reporting by other means.