Google no longer abides by ethical principles, says former director

San Francisco (awp / afp) – Former director of international relations at Google accuses the internet giant of having abandoned its founding moral values ​​and of being an accomplice to human rights violations in certain countries, such as China or the ‘Saudi Arabia.

“Defending women, the LGBTQ community, my colleagues of color and human rights have cost me my career,” said Ross LaJeunesse in an article published on Thursday on the Medium platform.

“I didn’t need further evidence that the motto (and Google’s watchword), + do no harm +, no longer truly reflected the values ​​of the company. It was just a tool marketing like others “.

The former responsible for relations with diplomats and civil society had joined Californian society in 2008. He left in May 2019, according to his LinkedIn profile.

In his story, he goes back in detail on Google’s collaboration with China, interrupted in 2010 by the founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, in particular because of the increase in censorship.

He believes that Google no longer takes into account respect for human rights in the development of new products or the signing of new contracts, as was the case before.

“There is a big difference between selling advertising space (…) and working with the Chinese government on artificial intelligence or hosting Saudi government applications, including Absher, which allows men to track and control displacement of female family members, “he said.

“Our support for human rights organizations is flawless,” said a Google spokesperson who was asked by AFP.

As part of the reorganization that took place within the group, “Ross was offered a new position at the same level and with the same remuneration, which he refused. We wish him success in his political ambitions” , she said.

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Ross LaJeunesse, married to a man, is indeed candidate in the elections to become one of the two senators of the State of Maine.

In his story, he also criticized Google for his corporate culture, which he said was intolerant of women, non-white people and sexual minorities.

Google boss of Indian descent, Sundar Pichai, was recently promoted to head of his parent company Alphabet. In addition to increasing pressure from governments on questions of privacy, competition or taxes, he faces an internal challenge which accuses the group of having largely deviated from the ideals engraved in the code of conduct of debut.

afp / rp

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