Google’s “Don’t Be Evil” Value, Not As Prominent At Google
Google’s Microsoft Moment by Anil Dash is an excellent write up on how Google might now be perceived as if they are evil, even if they are not. Anil’s piece goes through why this is the case and why it matters to Google. What I found more interesting was Matt Cutts, long time Googler, thoughts […]
Google’s Microsoft Moment by Anil Dash is an excellent write up on how Google might now be perceived as if they are evil, even if they are not. Anil’s piece goes through why this is the case and why it matters to Google.
What I found more interesting was Matt Cutts, long time Googler, thoughts to Anil’s post. But Matt actually said that people outside Google perceive Google uses the “don’t be evil” phrase less often now, then they ever have. Let me quote Matt:
We still use “don’t be evil” as a guiding principle inside Google, but I’ve noticed fewer and fewer people outside Google mentioning the phrase. That raises the worrying possibility that people are starting to think of Google as just another big company.
Clearly, Matt is championing Google has still being true to the “don’t be evil” value, but the world around Google doesn’t see it anymore. If Matt is noticing less people outside Google mentioning that phrase, is that an issue for what is being mentioned internally at Google? With so many top Googlers leaving Google for other companies, with new outside people taking their place, what does that make for Google today or for tomorrow?
The true question, in my mind, is that the value doesn’t matter anymore to the outside world. Like Anil said, Google is beyond that point. Let me quote Anil one more time, where he said Google “reached the point of corporate ambition and changing corporate culture.” Can Google go back to the point where people feel that core value is still important to the company? I personally doubt it, but Google can prove us all wrong. Can Google be perceived as the small company that some Googlers want people to perceive them as today? I don’t think so. But can Google be seen as the “don’t be evil” company at the size they are?
Also see The Google Hive Mind from Danny Sullivan last year, which got into similar issues about how Google is perceived externally versus its internal perceptions.