On September 5, Venture Beat ran an article exposing the internal corporate influences behind the Xbox 360 console's notorious "red ring of death" defects. The writer, Dean Takahashi, sought the help of Robert Delaware, who was a temporary game tester, to unravel the mystery behind the series of customer complaints.
After the story went live, Delaware was fired by his supervising manager for speaking to Takahashi without permission from Microsoft. Takahashi said in a follow-up to the story:
"He fully knew the risk he was taking, based on multiple conversations I had with him about using his name. Clearly, from a legalistic point of view, Delaware broke company policy and it is the company's right to fire him...[Delaware is expected] to face civil charges from his former employer ... and Microsoft as well."
According to Takahashi's report, Delaware helped unravel the following:
"Microsoft knew it had flawed machines, but it did not delay its launch because it believed the quality problems would subside over time. With each new machine, the company figured it would ride the “learning curve,” or continuously improve its production. Even though Microsoft’s leaders knew their quality wasn’t top notch, they did not ensure that resources were in place to handle returns and quickly debug bad consoles. There were plenty of warning signs, but the company chose to ignore them. The different parts of the business weren’t aligned."