Tech giants suffer Sept 11 memory loss

Someone forgot to tell a few of the IT industry's biggest tech giants that the first anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre falls on September 11.

Despite the rhetoric being espoused by the likes of IBM, EMC and Network Appliance about the significance of the anniversary and the need to show "respect", some of the world's leading vendors forgot to mark their diaries when it came to forward planning.

All of the big guns such as IBM, Intel and EMC have withdrawn advertising for the day as a result of a worldwide directive as a "way to observe September 11" but in Australia it simply slipped their minds.

Forgetting such a significant date is a real accomplishment but both IBM and EMC are sponsoring a storage conference, organised by Penton media, to be held in Sydney on September 11.

Asked about the insensitivity of the date, EMC marketing director Clive Gold was quick to blame Penton for the planning mishap.

"They chose the dates and assured us there would be no crude marketing associated with the event; it is just a coincidence and in my mind is not related - we will certainly pay our due respect," he said.

An IBM spokesman said the company was still determining the best way to observe the anniversary and all activities will take into account the date as it "is taken very seriously in the US".

"We believe we are behaving in a way that the community would expect its business leaders to behave and we are not doing anything objectionable by sponsoring an event on that day," he said.

Network Appliance marketing manager Harry Christian was taken aback by the poor planning but added that "life has got to go on".

"I don't think it is insensitive because the best way to commemorate the event is to go forward and continue to do business as usual," Christian said.

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