Monday, April 25, 2016

Did Edison Also Invent Corporate Spying?

He's known for the light bulb, recordings, motions pictures and discoveries too numerous to mention. But did Thomas Edison also condone corporate spying on his enemies? Did he help create corporate espionage? 

While he may not have invented it ... information from one of his employees can certainly be interpreted that way.

McCoy is on the left.
That employee was Joseph F. McCoy, who was hired at 20 years of age to work for the Edison Company. Not much is known about him except some basic details, but as Sloat-Olsen told the story of his jobs over the years, McCoy emerges as a shadowy figure, but influential in numerous ways...

In electric light dealings, companies like American Electric, U.S. Electric Company and Westinghouse were all on Edison's radar, so Sloat-Olsen says McCoy was sent to work at each of those companies, without their knowing he was an Edison employee, to find out about their plans or if they could be bought out. more