Fired engineer James Damore: Google is 'almost like a cult' (GOOG)

A woman attempts to use a laptop
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Ghislain & Marie David de Lossy  Getty Images Contributor

A woman attempts to use a laptop Credit Ghislain & Marie David de Lossy Getty Images Contributor

While some individuals surmised the memo may have sprung from Damore's resentment toward Google's diversity initiatives, others welcomed it. Lots of people, including some of Damore's former colleagues at Google, saw an implicit suggestion that women were somehow inferior software engineering in men, though Damore has said he doesn't think this.

Memegen, an internal forum that uses images overlaid with amusing captions, was filled with irreverent posts that openly mocked how an email discussing the memo from Sundar Pichai, Google's chief executive, had leaked to the media so quickly. In the days since his firing, Damore chose to give his first major interviews to two right-wing YouTube personalities: Stefan Molyneux, and Jordan B. Peterson. Damore argued that this created an environment where only certain opinions could be voiced and slammed the tech giant in its attempt to "silence open and honest discussion". How did Google, the company that hires the smartest people in the world, become so ideologically driven and intolerant of scientific debate and reasoned argument?

Pichai said in an email to staff that several Google employees became fearful for their safety and grew concerned about being outed for speaking up at the town hall.

A number of employees sent emails to Pichai and told managers that they planned to skip the meeting because they were anxious that they would face online reprisals for speaking out. Later that night, Pichai made a public appearance at an event near Google's campus focused on young girls in tech.

"I want you to know there's a place for you in this industry".

The U.S. far right plans to take its dispute with Google to the company's doorsteps, with a nationwide "March on Google" set to take place this month. "Don't let anyone tell you otherwise". "You belong here, and we need you", said a report in The Verge on Friday, quoting Pichai.

Scandal in Silicon Valley.

In the aftermath of memo-gate, everyone's had an opinion.

Google's just-hired head of diversity, Danielle Brown, responded earlier with her own memo, saying that Google is "unequivocal in our belief that diversity and inclusion are critical to our success". Today, New York Times columnist David Brooks called for Google CEO Sundar Pichai to resign over his handling of the situation accusing him of joining the mob against Damore. And needless to say, the issue isn't going away anytime soon. "That's when we need good leaders most".

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