Offered a job to work with Google due to his multifaceted experience, Niklas Femerstrand kindly turns down the offer and explains, in this open letter, the reality of Google as an evil and mischievous business. Google endangers its users' freedom and privacy at the behest of intelligence agencies while operating on a marketing-created sense of friendliness ultimately designed solely for profit.
As a kid growing up Google would always be the most interesting employee one working in the technical industry could possibly imagine. Google would flex very playfully in line with its “Don’t do evil” agenda. I grew up as a very ideologically and principle driven individual, but foremost I was curios by nature. As a kid interested in information security and computers in general I quickly began exploring code by breaking it and systems by breaking into them driven by the force that information wanted to be free.
My father found out quickly and we had a long chat about life’s importance. He told me not to be wreckless because the future would consist of tyranny and powerless people. He told me that in the future the world’s power structures would depend much on what I would today categorize as cypherpunks and hackers.
I feel that the future that my father explained to me as a kid is today’s present. Google says “Don’t do evil” on one hand, but on another hand Google also reads the contents of its users’ emails and tracks their behavior on the Internet — two things which I would characterise as directly evil. Google reads the emails that my mother is writing and tracking what my friends are buying. For advertisement purposes, Google says, and we only discovered the true consequences later when Edward Snowden blew the whistle.
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