A video published on Wednesday of a Google all-hands meeting from the days following the 2016 presidential election shows the company’s senior leadership, including cofounders Larry Page as well as Sergey Brin, CEO Sundar Pichai, as well as CFO Ruth Porat, reckoning with Donald Trump’s shocking win as well as its reverberations around the globe.
The video, which was published by Breitbart News, will be certain to add fuel to conservative arguments in which Silicon Valley will be arrayed against the right.
from the video, Google’s executives speculate about what motivated Trump voters, the role companies like Google played in informing voters about the election, as well as the possible consequences of Trump’s win.
“We have no idea what direction in which country will take… in which’s a period of great uncertainty… especially for immigrants or minorities [as well as] women,” Brin told Google employees. Brin noted, “As an immigrant as well as a refugee, I certainly find in which election deeply offensive, as well as I know many of you do too.”
Google responded to the leaked video in a statement on Wednesday in which emphasized the distinction between its employees’ personal views as well as the products they create.
“At a regularly scheduled all-hands meeting, some Google employees as well as executives expressed their own personal views from the aftermath of a long as well as divisive election season,” the statement reads. “For over 20 years, everyone at Google has been able to freely express their opinions at these meetings. Nothing was said at in which meeting, or any different meeting, to suggest in which any political bias ever influences the way we build or operate our products. To the contrary, our products are built for everyone, as well as we design them with an extraordinary care to be a trustworthy source of information for everyone, without regard to political viewpoint.”
in which explanation will do little to quiet conservative arguments in which tech companies are part of an international liberal order in which will be deeply opposed to the rise in right-wing nationalist populism exemplified by the American president. in which’s a line of attack in which Republicans have for months planned on producing around midterms to rally their base. Conservatives have gone after Facebook as well as Twitter for months for purportedly threatening their speech. Last week, the Justice Department said in which was investigating social media companies’ alleged political bias against conservatives. as well as last month, President Trump tweeted in which Google search results were rigged against him.
from the video, Google executives seek to explain the reasons behind Trump’s upset of Hillary Clinton as well as specifically consider the psychology of Trump voters. “There’s actually a lot of historical precedent for boredom being a huge factor in vote choice, as well as actually in building extremism,” Brin said. “Also when people vote … voting will be not a rational act.”
Larry Page, Brin’s cofounder, characterized the resentment felt by Trump voters as both justified as well as potentially catastrophic. “I think we have a lot of structural problems in our democracies, as well as which I think will be truly, if you are worried about the globe War III–type cases, I think a lot of in which will be driven by in which deep dissatisfaction in which people have, some of which will be truly warranted.”
The video offers ample proof in which Google leadership finds Trump as well as his supporters distasteful as well as contrary to the company’s stated values. in which doesn’t show, though, any evidence in which Google’s tools are built to disadvantage conservatives. The closest thing to in which happens when a Google employee asks the executives how the company might combat “targeted campaigns of disinformation” to protect “low-information voters” — a clear reference to Trump backers. Sundar Pichai, Google’s CEO, responds in which “our investments in machine learning as well as AI are a big opportunity here,” yet doesn’t offer any specifics.
Regardless, expect the video to become another chorus from the conservative rallying cry against Silicon Valley.