Google’s Year of Leaks

Google CEO Sundar Pichai
Alex Wong/ Getty

Google did not have a good 2018. Its CEO Sundar Pichai’s disastrous appearance before Congress capped off a year of bad news for the tech giant — much of it the result of damaging leaks of internal information from its own employees.

Breitbart News published many of the most explosive leaks, which exposed the chilling lurch of the world’s most powerful tech company towards authoritarianism and political bias.

The leaks have caused a frantic crackdown within the company, with reports that senior executives are “furious.” A source closed to the company recently told Breitbart News that security at the company’s headquarters in Mountain View, California, had been significantly tightened in recent months.

“Security is much heavier than I remember,” said the source. “Four crossing guards at every intersection. Fewer entrances to each building, and my host was much more concerned about where guests were allowed to go.”

Given the damage that many of the leaks have done to the company, it’s little wonder that Google is in a panic. Here are the top five leaks from 2018.

The Google Tape

Even the corporate media admitted this was a major scoop. Leaked to and published by Breitbart News in September, the Google Tape is a full recording of one of the company’s weekly all-hands “TGIF” (Thank God It’s Friday) meetings.

This wasn’t just any TGIF either — this was the company’s first all-hands meeting following the election of Donald Trump in November 2016. It features the horrified reactions of co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page, CEO Sundar Pichai, and other top executives at the tech giant.

Described by Fox Host Sean Hannity as a “funeral for America,” the executives can be seen lamenting the “offensive” election result, comparing Trump voters to extremists, and pledging to ensure the worldwide nationalist-populist movement is just a “blip” in history.

The Silent Donation 

First revealed on Tucker Carlson Tonight and published in full by Breitbart News, this leaked series of emails from Google’s head of “multicultural marketing,” Eliana Murillo, laments the loss of Hillary Clinton in 2016. But Murillo’s emails are more than a pity party — they reveal the company’s efforts to increase turnout among latinos, a pro-Democrat voting demographic, in “key states” in 2016, and highlight the company’s surprise when they voted Republican in greater numbers than previous elections.

As Rep. Jim Jordan noted during a tense exchange with CEO Sundar Pichai, the use of the phrase “key states” meant that Google wasn’t interested in increasing turnout in general — they wanted to affect the outcome. Pichai, despite being under oath, repeatedly denied the statements in the emails, even as he admitted that they would prove his company’s partisan bias.

Google’s Lobbying Machine

As political scrutiny of Silicon Valley reached an all-time high, Google’s D.C. lobbying machine — which had already spent more on lobbying in the nation’s capital than any other company in 2017 — went into action.

If you’ve heard arguments from establishment conservatives claiming that regulating big tech would be a “new fairness doctrine,” it’s likely that Silicon Valley had some role in funding them. Audio recordings leaked to the media reveal that Google funneled money to establishment conservative think-tanks including the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), and the libertarian Cato Institute to defend itself against calls for greater government oversight.

According to the leaked recordings, Google CEO Sundar Pichai has given a “clear directive” to do more conservative outreach. So expect more Google-funded conservatism in the future.

Google’s Left-Wing Cabal

While Google’s lobbyists suck up to establishment conservatives in D.C., the company’s employees are engaged in a relentless effort to push the tech giant’s policies further and further towards left-wing bias. Thanks to James Damore’s class-action political discrimination case against Google, we know far more about the company’s bonkers internal political culture. We know that the company instructs managers that values like “individual achievement” and “objectivity” were examples of “white dominant culture.” The lawsuit also revealed Google employees’ affinity for Antifa, the violent far-left street movement. A more amusing example: Google allowed an employee who identified as a “yellow-scaled wingless dragonkin” to give a presentation on “living as a plural being.”

Beyond the lawsuit, more examples were exclusively published by Breitbart News. In July, we learned that Google’s official on-campus talks program, Talks @ Google blocked a proposed guest talk by Jordan Peterson — and then allowed a far-left radical to give a talk on “white fragility.” More seriously — in an effort to cut ad revenue from Breitbart News, a left-wing cabal inside Google’s ad department directed advertising clients to the page of Sleeping Giants, a far-left organization whose mission is to smear conservative media with false allegations of racism and “white supremacy.” The same cabal trawled through Breitbart’s articles and comments sections looking for examples of “hate speech,” hoping for a pretext to pull Google ads from Breitbart altogether. The latter story caused Rep. Matt Gaetz to urge Sundar Pichai to launch an internal investigation into political bias at Google.

The Good Censor

A remarkably honest internal briefing published by Breitbart News in October, “The Good Censor” admits point-blank that Google, along with other Silicon Valley giants like Facebook and Twitter, has “shifted towards censorship” in recent years. We all knew that already, of course, but the admission from Google’s own research team — who unlike its spin doctors on capitol hill, are paid to convey the facts — is an important rebuke to allegations from Democrats and the media that Silicon Valley censorship is just a “conspiracy theory.”

The document also provides insight into Google’s motives for abandoning its old anti-censorship position. In addition to political reasons (the document talks about the rise of “misinformation” and the success of populist parties like Alternative for Germany), the document notes that global demands for censorship are on the rise. Censorship, claims the document, will allow Google to “expand globally” and “increase revenues.” A particularly revealing admission, given the last item on this list.

Project Dragonfly

In August, The Intercept lifted the lid on Project Dragonfly, a search app under development by Google that was designed to comply with the strict censorship regime of Communist China. The search app was to contain a list of unsearchable terms based on topics banned by China, and would have tied users’ searches to their personal phone numbers. Google also reportedly denied its own privacy team access to the project, although it later denied this.

The search app seems like an extension of the logic described in The Good Censor — in order to main global expansion and expand its revenues, Google must comply with growing censorship demands from foreign countries. China, with its 1.2 billion citizens, is a tempting market for any company.

Onlookers didn’t see Dragonfly in such pragmatic terms. Politicians (including Vice President Mike Pence), human rights groups, and over 1,000 of its own employees all demanded that Google cancelled the project. Despite Sundar Pichai defending Dragonfly before the Judiciary Committee, there are early reports that Google has since kicked the project into the long grass.

…..

With Google clamping down on leakers and locking down its internal communications, it’s unclear how many more bombshells we’ll see in the New Year. But we’ve already seen plenty — thanks to the company’s bold whistleblowers, we know that Google is filled with radicals, will appease authoritarian governments in a hunt for profits, is virulently anti-Trump and elitist, and admits it has “shifted towards censorship.” This was the year that Google, famed for its creepy insistence on knowing everything about its users, got a taste of its own medicine.

Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News. You can follow him on TwitterGab.ai and add him on Facebook. Email tips and suggestions to allumbokhari@protonmail.com.

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