Google memories (1/x) 

y'all going to laugh, but I really believed it. I drank the kool-aid. this was the mid-00s, a tech company with a motto "don't be evil" still felt daring rather than cringe – for an alienated techie like past me, at least; my politically aware friends tried to warn me; but I didn't realise that Google leveraged its fine-tuned advertising machinery also for recruiting, and I swallowed the whole thing.

Last boost from @elilla is a good read and I encourage you to read the whole thread. I see many parallels in my former employer.


@ifixcoinops Sad thing is when I imagine building a company and then later start thinking rationally, I can't really see a way out of becoming at least somewhat evil. The way things are the small & honest fail slowly or suddenly, the small and dishonest grows, & the large is only large b/c it was dishonest back when it was small. At the very least you need to avoid tax and underpay employees to make sth akin to a white collar wage w/o investments.
@elilla We all fell, the acting was brilliant...

@cadadr google became successful by being a leaps and bounds better search engine than the competition and every early employee who was paid in stock became rich. It's very possible to become successful without starting evil.
@moonman @cadadr

The question is, then, why do they all turn evil after they succeed?
@amerika @cadadr I don't deny there's limits on growth if you refuse to be evil. Additionally, there is a supposed fact about businesses, which is that the skills it takes to bootstrap a successful business aren't the same as the skills it takes to grow a business after it reaches a certain size, so founders reach their point of incompetence, and sell after a certain point and then the MBAs take over.
@moonman @cadadr

I agree with everything thoroughly except your first sentence. I don't know if that's true. It feels like it is, but I think the best companies grow by being good and therefore, reliable and safe for normals.

If anything, Google has lost the power of its brand name.

But all the stuff after "Additionally" is really good analysis.

@moonman @cadadr
Don't want outright contradict, but I understand that this is untrue. As long as google was only the 'best search engine', they still had no clue how to make profit and pay back investors. It was not until google turned to the dark side that the company became 'successful'

See zuboff's book, or even that doctorow post i boosted earlier.

@cadadr Or it goes the way of Cisco and the principled founders are forced out.

@ifixcoinops @elilla

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