Tech

Flirting and inappropriate messages between Gates and an employee… A report exposes

It seems that American billionaire Bill Gates is in trouble. The “Wall Street Journal” revealed that the founder of Microsoft received alerts from the company’s managers not to write to female employees with “inappropriate” e-mail.

In a report published on Monday, the newspaper cited a 2019 letter sent by an engineer who worked for Microsoft who said that she had had a relationship with Gates before he withdrew from the company’s board of directors and pointed out that this case was not the only one.

“He was setting the stage for a relationship with her.”

More than a decade ago, Microsoft executives discovered emails between Gates and a mid-level employee of the company, according to the Wall Street Journal.

People familiar with the matter also stated that the incident occurred when Gates was still a Microsoft employee and chairman of the board of directors, according to the newspaper. They added that in his correspondence with the employee, he “was flirting and paving the way for a relationship” with her.

did not deny

The “Wall Street Journal” also quoted sources that the most prominent executives of the company, then-general counsel Brad Smith, and the chief of staff, Lisa Brummel, met with Gates and told him that his behavior was “inappropriate” and that he should stop.

The sources pointed out that Gates did not deny the exchange of letters and told the managers that “it is not a good idea”, stressing that he will stop doing so.

“It wasn’t sexual in the explicit sense”

Microsoft spokesperson Frank Shaw explained that in 2008, shortly before Bill Gates retired as a full-time employee, the company learned of emails sent in 2007.

In the letters, Shaw said, Gates suggested meeting the employee outside of work, noting that “despite the courtship, the correspondence was not sexual in the explicit sense, but was deemed inappropriate.” He added that the employee did not file a complaint about the incident, which was not reported in advance.

Bill Gates (archive from AFP)

Bill Gates (archive from AFP)

He also pointed out that the romantic relationship with the engineer began around 2002, but Microsoft discovered her in 2019.

“false allegations”

For its part, Gates’ spokeswoman, Bridget Arnold, considered in a written statement to the newspaper, “These allegations are false, and rumors circulated from sources that do not have direct knowledge, and in some cases have a significant conflict of interest.”

It is noteworthy that Bill Gates , one of the world’s richest people, held the position of CEO of “Microsoft” until 2000. He was a full-time employee until 2008 and Chairman of the Board of Directors until 2014. He also served on the Microsoft Board of Directors for more than 4 decades until he resigned out of office in March 2020.

Not the same

In 2021, Gates and his wife, Melinda French, applied to end their 27-year marriage. The divorce proceedings ended last August, while they continue to lead the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, one of the world’s largest charities.

Melinda French (Reuters)

Melinda French (Reuters)

It is noteworthy that the “Wall Street Journal”, in a report published in May, stated that a committee of the company’s board of directors had appointed a law firm to investigate a letter sent by an engineer at Microsoft in 2019 alleging her involvement with Gates.

The newspaper confirmed that the engineer is not the same employee that directors warned Gates not to communicate with, according to informed sources.

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