Friday, May 22, 2009

Should Microsoft's CEO summit have been 'open source'?

The biggest business story in Seattle this week occurred on the Microsoft campus -- and the media barely covered it. They weren't allowed to.

The Microsoft CEO Summit drew more than 105 CEOs representing 25 countries. Altogether, these titans represent about $2.9 trillion in annual sales and 8.9 million employees.

Among the names released were CEO Jeff Bezos, Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett and News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch. The three-day meeting began May 19 at the Microsoft campus in Redmond.

If these leaders were elected officeholders meeting as a public body, their gathering would have probably been subject to open meetings laws. There's no such sunshine law for the meetings of leaders of private companies.

Microsoft has been hosting these summits for 13 years, and they've become a world-class forum.

The event was news in itself even though no news was announced. They discussed the convergence of technology, business issues, economic trends and making the world a better place. The exact agenda was private.

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