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Is Google Now Evil? Ask the Engineer!

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Well, this is probably nothing new to anyone, but it's surprising to actually read an ex-Google employee say it:

The Google I was passionate about was a technology company that empowered its employees to innovate. The Google I left was an advertising company with a single corporate-mandated focus.


Under Eric Schmidt ads were always in the background. Google was run like an innovation factory, empowering employees to be entrepreneurial through founder’s awards, peer bonuses and 20% time. Our advertising revenue gave us the headroom to think, innovate and create. Forums like App Engine, Google Labs and open source served as staging grounds for our inventions. The fact that all this was paid for by a cash machine stuffed full of advertising loot was lost on most of us. Maybe the engineers who actually worked on ads felt it, but the rest of us were convinced that Google was a technology company first and foremost; a company that hired smart people and placed a big bet on their ability to innovate.


The old Google made a fortune on ads because they had good content. It was like TV used to be: make the best show and you get the most ad revenue from commercials. The new Google seems more focused on the commercials themselves.

Perhaps Google is right. Perhaps the future lies in learning as much about people’s personal lives as possible. Perhaps Google is a better judge of when I should call my mom and that my life would be better if I shopped that Nordstrom sale. Perhaps if they nag me enough about all that open time on my calendar I’ll work out more often. Perhaps if they offer an ad for a divorce lawyer because I am writing an email about my 14 year old son breaking up with his girlfriend I’ll appreciate that ad enough to end my own marriage. Or perhaps I’ll figure all this stuff out on my own.

The old Google was a great place to work. The new one?


--- End quote ---

And he moved to Microsoft... Can we say BURN? :P ;D

They all have the capacity and talent for evil. As companies grow, they employ more and more people. And as more people get added, the company begins to become a microcosm of the world we live in. And evil can easily be found in our world.

All large organizations (governments, businesses, political parties, churches) contain elements of evil. Some have merely demonstrated a greater willingness to indulge in evil than others.

Let's not kid ourselves. :(

Perhaps Google is right. Perhaps the future lies in learning as much about people’s personal lives as possible.
--- End quote ---


If you hate door-to-door salesman, then you gotta hate google. If not then, let me know your bank codes, your daughters cell phone number, and most important thing -when you're out of the house and many other secret things that you don't want to share. If not, then guy like him should get off the google fanboy podium. I see no difference between stalkers and google.

Seems like Whittaker's biggest gripe was with Google+ competing with facebook. He didn't see search as social. Hell, everything is social now.

And, remember, this is coming from an ex-employee. You have to take such statements in context. While he may have valid points, this does not mean Google *is* now evil in some way. That said, I have about as much faith in it 'doing no evil' as I do in any other publicly traded corporation 'doing no evil'.


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