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What do you do when you’re unhappy with your boss? Traditionally, you grumble to co-workers in the hallway, round the water cooler or over a drink after work. When e-mail, bulletin boards and chat rooms came along, some wrote messages to each other. Now the idea has been taken a step further: disgruntled employees are setting up Web sites to provide a forum for complaints. The term invented for this is cyberventing: venting your anger by electronic means. Some employers have even set up official grousing sites on internal Web systems, reasoning that it’s better to get the complaints out in the open than have problems fester in the dark. The term has also been applied to Web sites set up by people who are angry at the treatment they’ve received from retailers or suppliers, and also to the mass e-mailing of staff by aggrieved ex-workers, such as in a recent case at Intel.

While cyberventing is a convenient way to blow off steam, conflict resolution is the best way in the long run to build and maintain strong work relationships, he contends.

HR Magazine, Nov. 1999

Bosses in New Zealand must be pretty good, because none of them get a mention in the My Boss Sucks website. This is part of a new trend on the Internet — cyberventing, where you can complain to your heart’s content.

The Press (Canterbury, New Zealand), Mar. 2000

Page created 8 Apr. 2000

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World Wide Words is copyright © Michael Quinion, 1996–2014. All rights reserved.
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Last modified: 8 April 2000.