Google is fed up with employees who express political opinions.
The company released new Community Guidelines on Thursday to determine what employees in the organization may say. Under the new rules, "interrupting the working day to hold a heated debate on politics or the latest news" does not mean "building a community," and employees should therefore "avoid conversations that disrupt the workplace or otherwise disrupt the workplace Google Violates Policies "
" Our primary responsibility is to do the work we've been hired to do and not spend any hours working on debates on non-work related issues, "the policy says.
Re-Code Reports Sent by Google An e-mail to employees on Thursday night, in which CEO Sundar Pichai addressed the revised guidelines.
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A Google spokesman told Gizmodo that the Community Guidelines apply to both corporate mailing lists and internal conversations.
Asked how Google determines whether a political debate is rated as "raging" or "disturbing," the spokesman for Gizmodo said the community management team must rate it. Community facilitators will be tasked with monitoring conversations in group forums and will "intervene and redirect the conversation, or in some cases end or delete the thread," the spokesperson said. The community management team usually tries to train employees before they get disciplined.
The company also creates a "central flagging tool" that employees can use to post comments.
The guidelines show a strong departure from the "open communication culture" for which Google used to be known. However, this culture has caused Google increasingly problems in recent years. The first discussions within the company took place in August 2017 with the anti-diversity memo by former Google employee James Damore. However, according to most reports, this type of internal disagreement is limited.
Google has also been under increasing political pressure as President Donald Trump raises unfounded allegations of anticonservative bias and censorship, and Senators Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz have "grilled" companies about their content moderation practices.
The guidelines also say that Googlers "express concerns and question and discuss the company's activities with respect."
"Be sure to talk with good information," states the guidelines. "Do not assume that you know the full story, and be careful not to make false or misleading statements about Google's products or business that could undermine confidence in our products and the work we do."
The Ominous Warning Apparently, the activism of the staff was following the recent protests against Google's involvement in a Pentagon AI drone program, the company's work on a censored search engine for China, and the mistreatment of sexual harassment and assault cases the company fights.
The deterrent effect this will have in all areas of Google should be obvious. An employee may be afraid to come up with an idea for a product that will make the world a better place because the problem he addresses is political in nature. And if employees continue to discuss political issues, they run the risk of harming the subjective perception of the word "anger" by their superiors. At least, Donald Trump will welcome it when the company bends its knees a bit as it intensifies its attacks.