Did Google Really Say this?

According to the NY Times (http://s.nyt.com/u/Q6T), Alan Davidson, director of United States public policy for Google, while testifying before congress, is noted as saying:

“censorship had become more than a human rights issue and was hurting profit for foreign companies.”

Is Google so self focused that they would elevate even $1 of their profit over human rights? Did the NY Times misquote him? Was this really his position? That Google’s profit was more important than human rights?

If this was in fact said and what was meant, this man either needs a basic lesson in Enlighment thinking or a new speech writer. Better yet perhaps he should be looking for a new job.

Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
Did Google Really Say this? by

11 thoughts on “Did Google Really Say this?”

  1. Mike: Within the business world, and clearly the big business world, the focus on profits usually takes precedence. Many are focused on profits. If you aren’t focusing on that, one might soon be out of a job. It becomes reinforcing.

    In that environment it doesn’t surprise me that statements of that ilk are made.

    It requires other people, outside of the corporate environment, to remind those inside the corporate cave that human rights are of prime importance.

    Grotesque example, but if you go back through history, how could the crew on the slave ships not scream out about the importance of human rights.

    I suspect its the people outside of the corporate profit mentality that have the perspective and the freedom to realize that human rights comes first.

  2. If the quote is true, it’s bone chilling…and yet, as Dave has pointed out, certainly not unprecedented. I would certainly like to see further comment on this from Google.

  3. To me Google pulling out of China has little to do with human rights, I feel they are simply using this as a PR stunt. (Although that comment seams to undermine the stunt).

  4. Sometimes, I wonder, Mike…when a Google employee supposedly says something like this, when Vint Cerf said, “There isn’t any privacy, get over it,” back in 2008, I wonder what I’m seeing.

    As an American, I expect politicians and corporations to put a good face on what they are doing and then do bad things behind the public’s back. I expect lies, sad though that may be. It’s very weird when these entities baldly state something that seems ugly to others. Is it a slip of the tongue? Is it that the speaker forgets where he is…thinking for a moment that he is in a private meeting, speaking corporate-ese, and he speaks the way he is used to amongst his peers? Or has he simply lost it and forgotten that telling lies creates apathy, confusion and distraction so that more rotten stuff can go on while the public is looking the other way?

    I just don’t know, but it’s always weird when hard-nosed sound bytes like this make it into the mainstream.

  5. It reminds me (only slightly and in an odd way) of when the Yes Men announced on a BBC news show, posing as Dow Spokes folks, that Dow Chemical was going to properly reimburse the victims of Bhopal and their stock plummeted.

    I wonder how Google’s stock responded?

  6. What did you expect from a giant company like Google? Of course they want our money, and of course this is their primary concern! If they would say in a conference one day that they value human rights more than money, I would know they would just be lying and I would laugh in their face.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments links could be nofollow free.