Google employees are unhappy with their company. Several workers have voiced out their concerns with the company's involvement with the Pentagon.
Employees Leaving Google
On Monday, May 14, news broke that a dozen employees resigned from Google. Their exit from the technology company is allegedly due to an assignment Google has with the Pentagon. A few months ago, Google agreed to assist the Pentagon in developing a piece of artificial intelligence that could be used to strengthen the U.S. Armed Forces' drones. The collaboration, called Project Maven, hopes to add technology that would give the machines the knowledge to categorize places and people during their missions.
Google Employees' Petition
Thousands of Google employees have signed an internal petition for Google CEO Sundar Pichai to discontinue the company's association with the Pentagon. The document stated that the technology company has had previous history avoiding working with the military. On their petition, the employees used a motto, "Don't be evil," a statement that was the backbone of Google for over 20 years. The staff members who signed the petition added that Google should add a policy against working with the military.
Supporting Google Employees
Recently, the International Committee for Robot Arms Control wrote an open letter that stand in solidarity with the 3,100 employees. Members of the group represented numerous universities around the world and called for several of Google's top leaders such as Pichai and Alphabet CEO Larry Page to listen to their employees. The letter also noted that they were concerned that if Google decides to do more military work, it might put users' lives in jeopardy as it has information on everyone using their services.
Google Remains Defiant
As of publication, Google leadership has not eliminated its commitment to the Pentagon. It has gone on to defend its involvement with Project Maven.
Google is also a leading candidate to work on another significant Pentagon project called the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure. Departing employees also noticed that the open culture of debating these ideas in public has started disappearing.
"At some point, I realized I could not in good faith recommend anyone join Google, knowing what I knew. I realized if I can't recommend people join here, then why am I still here?" said a former Google employee to Gizmodo.
Other Google News
Google Assistant made headlines last week when a new feature, Google Duplex, stunned the world during a presentation at the technology company's developers conference. During the presentation, a video showcased Google Duplex making appointments for haircuts and meals. What surprised audiences were that the AI-driven voice feature sounded a real human. However, critics stated that Google Duplex served as proof that AI can trick humans.
The company also introduced a redesigned Google News to consumers. It used AI to deliver news from across the world. The software company revealed that the new AI feature would put the reports in real time and can organize them by storyline. Users can still browse news pieces by category.
Recently, Google added Google Pay for its Gmail iOS users. Google Pay allows users to send and request money from anyone via e-mail. If it is the first time that customers receive money through Gmail, by selecting "transfer to bank" and "add debit card." Once customers enter card information, they can hit "claim money" to receive their funds.
Tech Times reached out to Google about this story.