Ondrejka forced out of Second Life's parent company?

I was surprised to see this item on the front page of the New York Times website this evening: Cory Ondrejka, Linden Lab's CTO and a key architect of the virtual world almost since its inception, has supposedly been forced to step down by CEO Philip Rosedale.

The Massively blog has the dirt, based on what it describes as an internal Linden email that Rosedale supposedly sent to all employees. After summarizing Ondrejka's accomplishments, it reads:

Cory and I have differences in how we think Linden should be run, differences that in the past few months have become irreconcilable. These are tensions that were more manageable when we were smaller, and there have been times that they have helped us do great work together. But now, as we change and grow as a company, I feel that we need a different set of strengths in engineering leadership.

Massively then printed a statement from Rosedale, followed by a statement from Ondrejka.

But there's a little problem with the email and the two statements: They haven't been confirmed by Linden Lab or anyone else, even though it's been several hours since the news broke, and it's still early evening in San Francisco. I am looking at Linden Lab's management page right now, and Ondrejka is still listed. The Linden Lab news page doesn't have the statements. And the Second Life blog mentions nothing. The New York Times didn't do any original reporting, it just reprinted an Associate Press article which only has one source: Massively.

I'm going to withhold judgement until I see confirmation. Stay tuned ...

Related Commentary by Ian Lamont:

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