Google Fires Employee Behind Controversial Anti-Diversity Memo, But This Is Not Yet Over
Google has fired the employee behind the controversial anti-diversity memo that rocked the company over the weekend.
The memo, which circulated within the company, advocated replacing Google's diversity initiatives with policies that instead awarded ideological diversity.
Google Fires Author Of Anti-Diversity Memo
Google has fired James Damore, the senior software engineer who wrote the 10-page anti-diversity memo. His name was previously withheld, but his identity eventually started making rounds online.
In his so-called manifesto, titled Google's Ideological Echo Chamber, Damore wrote that women are underrepresented in the technology industry not due to discrimination and bias, but because of biological differences.
Damore suggested that Google should not support programs that represent racial and gender minorities, and criticized the company's culture of encouraging a more diverse workplace. The memo also accused Google of hushing conservative political opinions, which resulted in shortcomings in ideological diversity.
Various Google employees voiced their reactions against the anti-diversity memo through social media. Google's new VP for diversity, integrity, and governance Danielle Brown, meanwhile, initially responded to the memo by condemning the thoughts of Damore and reaffirming Google's stance on diversity. However, she added that Google will remain tolerant of clashing viewpoints, which made it unclear if the company would take action against Damore.
The action came from Google CEO Sundar Pichai himself, who recently responded to the memo through a note sent to employees. He claimed that the document violated the company's Code of Conduct and crossed the line "by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace."
"To suggest a group of our colleagues have traits that make them less biologically suited to that work is offensive and not OK," Pichai said.
Pichai's response was not entirely clear on whether Damore was fired, and a Google representative only directed questions on Damore's dismissal to Pichai's note. Damore, however, confirmed his dismissal through email to Bloomberg.
Google Anti-Diversity Issue Not Yet Over
The dismissal of Damore, however, does not end the discussion regarding the anti-diversity topics that the former Google engineer raised. Conservative factions have already risen to his defense, applauding Damore for his political correctness and having the courage to speak out against the diversity initiatives being perpetuated in the technology industry.
The firing of Damore, ironically, further confirms his claims that dissenting political opinions have no room in Google. As other big names in tech such as Apple and Microsoft have also implemented diversity initiatives, this discussion could soon also find its way through their doors.