I am currently a postdoctoral fellow in a top institution. Sadly it did not really go well, principally for human reasons. Therefore I decided to leave my position and last year I made it clear to my PI that I would leave this year (I said exactly that it would be my last contract), which he was fine with. I found a position and got an offer, which would have required me to start two months before the end of my contract. I came to my PI, who refused to let me go, as he wanted me to finish my current project. I later realized that he invented a vastly exaggerated story about the company to justify his refusal. At the time I believed him and refused the position. Looking back it was clearly just a story to keep me for as long as possible. Sadly I am in a country where I don't have the right to resign unilaterally from a fixed-term position, only by mutual agreement and he made it clear that I won't be able to leave before it expires.
This is after I already delivered on one of the two projects, that I worked on with a best-in-class solution (I am on the computational side), published, and distributed it. The second is in a very good spot, just not 100% finished.
I think that preventing a postdoc who wants to leave academia from getting a permanent position does not conform to the usual informal deal in academia, and that this conduct should not be rewarded. The problem is that if I keep working hard and deliver, it means that the behavior of my PI is rewarded. I also really want to pass this knowledge on, so that another postdoc doesn't end up trapped with this PI.
I would also add that at least 50% of the last students/postdocs of this PI left and do not want to talk to him ever again. He frequently does not talk to his PhDs for years, even when being the principal supervisor. He is simply the worst 'mentor' and 'manager' that I have met in academia, because he does not even try to be any of this.
My PI is clearly keeping me out of the 'next generation' job interviews probably because he knows that I'll be bluntly honest and discourage anyone to come in this lab in 1 on 1.
Is there any way to get the word out about his behavior? If I finish the second project, do I not reward this behavior, so that he will do that to future students/postdoc? What are my options to ensure that this kind of behavior does not reproduce?