“Don’t Be Evil”. The Abandoned Promise.February 3, 2021 | by Eriс
Those of us, who have been around the Internet from the early days of Google, may remember these words: “don’t be evil” proudly spoken by early Google founders.
It was a somewhat romantic notion, based on the power of a new search engine gathering steam and moving the world forward. Recognizing the influence of information, any kind of information, about everyone, became a semi-official motto, and a good one. It was easy to remember and it set our minds in belief that nothing bad can come from Google. No matter what they do. By declaring their purpose and intent in three short words, they told the world they are a force of integrity, of promise, of freedom and whatever they planned on bringing into our lives would make it all better.
We lived with these words for many years. Do you recall their own early candid admission that “after they grew to be over a certain size with power and influence, the corporation must hire people to act as lobbyists of their influence in the corridors of power” be it in Washington or elsewhere? This isn’t an exact quote, but the thought and image they projected is herein. It was a discovery of sorts, by Google who were amazed at the intensity of what they were involved in and how it intertwined with everything else around them, akin to a child learning about the world out there.
You can probably learn a great more about Google by googling Google. An institution like Google (or Alphabet, Google’s parent company) has a detailed and well documented history. Today, they are probably the most visible feature of our American culture and the rest of the world. They seem to be able to bring that very world to our screens and have it at our fingertips. To many people, Google is the start of all beginnings and the conclusion of all ends. The public witnesses the rise and fall of individuals, corporations and empires on the Internet. Google is the information thirst-quenching fountain we all drink from. These days businesses and people can flourish or fade away by the graces of Google – decline to advertise on Google and see how long your business would last. They are the holders of people’s reputations, public and not so public records. It is all there in Google – to be discovered, marveled at and laughed at; to be hated or adored; to be preserved in perpetuity. As well as things that are funny and silly, but also extremely serious and potentially deadly.
So much power at one’s command comes with constant moral dilemmas. As the guardian of this Internet world, one comes across the facts that cannot and should not be let out in the open without some thinking. They can cause pain, destruction, wars, political upheavals and downfalls of governments. No longer a simple “transmitter of facts” both employees and administrators at Google must have long re-thought their own part in all of this. Google has gotten to be in the middle of millions of events, good and bad. They must have working groups that come up with all sorts of policies that define their own role in the affairs of our world. For them to get tangled in politics and economics will undoubtedly result in profit losses. After all, Google and its holdings are there to generate enormously immense amounts of income. Being this large surely places them into all sorts of worldwide power sharing positions. We can now only guess to whom Google has sworn their loyalty unto for their greatest profits. The said connections and relationships are vast, with great powers, deep and in some case secretive. These various links are not always strong. Some are very fragile, but must be maintained at all costs if Google is to survive intact and flourish. If the valued relationship is not to gain monetarily, then it’s a part of their Public Relations image; to maintain a favorable image of themselves to the people of the world.
As part of the powerhouse known as “Big Tech,” Google acts as eyewitnesses and investigators; the prosecutors, the lawyers and the juries but also the court reporter, judge and executioner, all rolled into one. Without any outside controls, legislative government rules to follow, no oversight and no outside force to apply breaks or safeguards, they run free to cater to those somewhat unknown powers that influence them. We are the public they are obligated to serve. We are the buyers of the products and services they advertise yet none of us, not one of us, have any meaningful input into Google online political or social philosophy. They have never even asked us to give input on some of the most important issues.
Google poorly conceived ideas, unpopular actions and unjust decisions are not open anywhere for redress by any body of government. They are trusted to govern themselves. None of us are privy to its collective mindset formed internally by analysts, dozens of committees and management’s dictates. In our complex world of rules and laws, Google’s stands apart with immunity to do as it wishes, highly intricate, rarely if ever do they reveal their underpinnings.
Over the years, moving down the path they encounter forks. Among the many forks in their path, Google made a wrong turn. It abandoned its “don’t be evil” doctrine and decided to reformat the world according to the “woke” mindset of someone (or few) at its helm. It started early on but we just didn’t notice it as much. From being an aggregator of news and information, it became an editor and producer of events and a stern unfair, reckless censor and critic. It took on a political and social identity, a politicized body with incredible influence.
Instead of broadcasting every major voice, Google chose to suppress many. Many of us think it was and is being done to protect our society from hate, bigotry, racism, warmongering and similarly horrifying elements. But that’s not true, freedom in our nation comes in many flavors, and some of them are hard to swallow. Google went further, a lot further in their quest to quell freedom and journeyed away from a harmonious and fair exchange of ideas. They took it upon themselves to take the side of one major part of the conversation and use their influence and power to promote it while censoring and silencing all other voices. They are reshaping the world according to the wishes of those hidden powers that now control Google from the shadows.
They took upon themselves to censor and silence the President of the United States. With other Big Tech corporations (all the above also applies to Apple, Twitter and Facebook – but our focus is on Google), they went above and beyond, crossing certain boundary thought by some to be not illegal but perceived by very many to be a violation of the U.S. Constitution’s guarantees of free speech and expression. An act certainly very immoral and highly unethical, in our opinion bordering on being criminal. They prevented the country’s President his right to freely speak to nation’s people and to the world.
No business or industry in the United States can be permitted to shape political ideology, social behavior or the thinking of its people. Google has placed itself above the law and we are certain they will regret it. For they have exposed their agenda and have clearly become a blocking force of America’s freedoms and rights. They have in the process ruined their own reputation and most likely started the chain of events that will ring loudly in the Halls of America’s Congress. Google and the other Big Tech’s power bases may soon be curtailed; their influence reduced by American laws and rules. This has already started happening in the European Union that was equally stunned as much as America was by the silencing of our President.
The world is not blind. If you can do this to the President of the United States, anyone can become a target. To be destroyed and “cancelled” by Big Tech. The nature of their business single-handedly affords them to start wars, dispose of governments and cause political cataclysms. Scary power in the hands of a several corporations, but a power the people never granted them the right to have.
Freedom of all people cannot be taken away by a few. It is that simple.
The sooner the world gets to understand this and rises up against it – in ways small and large – the sooner we’ll see some reformatting of existing status-quos. We want it badly. We need Google, but we need to be free from its dictate and tyranny even more.
We are truly sorry to see Google and others going over to the dark side. It’s not what is expected of our largest, most visible and dependable corporations. They have many responsibilities and obligations. Substituting for our courts, government; being “woke” and playing the role of minders over what we think are not among them.
And in conclusion: Google had indeed ditched its “don’t be evil” motto. Literally. Read it here.
What does it tell us? They must view themselves very differently these days.
What a pity.