Hundreds of Google staff met on Friday and discussed what they are active in is a frequent result of criticism of society: vengeance. Two leaders of recent corporate protests said they were abused by managers and collected similar stories from other employees at the world's largest Internet company.
The retaliation claims are the latest in a series of internal upheavals on issues ranging from the use of artificial intelligence to military purposes to inappropriate behavior by managers and the rights of contract workers. Google is organizing the Silicon Valley standard for the hiring and maintenance of dozens of highly trained computer scientists. But recent troubles have damaged her reputation. Employees have lost confidence in Google executives in recent internal surveys. Some software operators refused to work on the Pentagon's project last year, speeding up the contract, and some resigned in protest.
In November, some employees organized a company to go on payments to executives who are facing sexual assault allegations. Around the same time, the activists collected 350 accounts of workers' concerns.
On Monday, two of those organizers, Meredith Whittaker and Claire Stapleton, wrote an email that Google punished for their activism. The two asked the team to join them on Friday to discuss the alleged actions of the company, and during the meeting they shared more than a dozen other stories of internal revenge they collected last week. Like many Google meetings, participants could watch the live stream of video and submit questions and comments.
"Now more than ever we have to postpone the response, and reject the culture of fear and silence that rewards the creator," read an email organizers of the event, which Bloomberg News viewed.
"To prevent a complaint from being filed with Google, we provide employees with several channels to report concerns, including anonymously, and to investigate all allegations," the Google spokeswoman said in an e-mail message. On compensation. "
Whittaker is a Google researcher specializing in artificial intelligence. She founded a research group, AI Now, which is affiliated with New York University. Whitaker wrote to her colleagues by email that she was told she would have to "abandon my work on AI ethics."
Stapleton, who works in YouTube's marketing department, said she found out she was taking her down, and later told her to take a medical vacation she did not need. After retaining a lawyer, Stapleton said, "The company has given me back the download, at least on paper," but "the environment remains hostile and I am considering stopping almost every day."
In an email, Stapleton said she had arranged a meeting with Google's human resources division after marking changes in her job: "We put people on it all the time," Stapleton said.
On Friday, Whittaker and Stapleton shared more information about their post-internal situations to colleagues.
Whitaker said her manager, whom she did not mention, told her that her work on AI ethics "is no longer appropriate." According to Google's cloud division manager, sales should be massively increased by "being everywhere Lockheed," says Whittaker. This is a reference to the Lockheed Martin Corp. security company. Google's work with the US military was the subject of employee protests last year. The Google spokeswoman declined to comment on the mention of the cloud business.
Whitaker tried to move the team to another Google team, the move said it was supported by Jeff Dean, head of the artificial intelligence company. Shortly thereafter, Whittaker was involved in another protest: a petition worker against the appointment of Kay Coles James to AI ethics organized by Google. The company eventually scrapping the group.
Two weeks after the petition was filed, Whitaker said she had learned that the planned transfer had been canceled and her role at Google would change. "My continued work with AI now and my work on ethical ethics was not on the table," she wrote.
Una King, director of Google's diversity strategy, rejected at least one of the employee's claims. "I can honestly say when I look at the details of one of the cases, it's not as it appears here," she wrote, according to a Bloomberg News release.
YouTube and Google Cloud executives sent messages to staff at the beginning of the week sharing Stapleton and Whitaker's accounts, according to those who saw them.
Some current and past employees have taken Twitter on Friday to register complaints via #htag Google hashtag, a riff on the company's virtual assistant product. "It's just the tip of the iceberg," wrote Alex Hanna, a member of Google's cloud department.
"I'm grateful that I left Google," wrote Liz Fong-Jones, an engineer and outspoken critic who left the company earlier this year.
"This is a pattern, these are systemic issues, and we will change it only by talking up and working together," Stapleton wrote in an e-mail.
Google's management publicly confirmed the worker's walk in the fall, and gave the staff a blessing to vent frustration. However, as the disputes continue to rise within Google, the company's lawyers called on the US government to give companies more latitude for the monarchy in the rebel workers from an organization than email at the workplace.
Google raised this argument in an ongoing case before the National Labor Relations Committee, which dealt with retributive discipline against an employee. On Monday, a new complaint was filed with the agency accusing Google of rewarding employees for discussion and working conditions in protest.
The prosecution alleges that in the past six months, one or more employees were injured in a move, a downgrade or other "negative action," and that the company acted to "avoid encouraging" the type of collective action protected by federal law.
The identity of the person who submitted the case was filed in a copy obtained by Bloomberg News via a request for freedom of information. The matter was allocated to the NLRB Regional Office in New York.