Leaked audio from Google all-hands meeting details company’s trust problem

The audio includes executives like Sundar Pichai tackling trust issues raised by employees

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Leaked audio from an all-hands meeting at Google includes executives’ responses to employee questions on several issues, including trust.

The Washington Post published the recording from the meeting, which took place on Thursday. Execs discussed the hiring of a former Department of Homeland Security staffer, a recent Chrome extension for employees that many consider a “spy tool” and trust.

On the trust front, Google CEO Sundar Pichai can be heard saying that trust is “one of the most foundational things for the company.” However, he also noted that Google had trouble with “transparency at scale” and “how to do it.”

“Especially at a time when everything we do doesn’t stay within the walls,” Pichai said.

Google’s vice president for government affairs, Karan Bhatia, defended the hiring of Miles Taylor, a former chief of staff to Kirstjen Nielsen when she was homeland security secretary. Employees questioned the hiring of Taylor, who backed the Trump administration’s travel ban.

The ban targetted immigration from some majority-Muslim countries and supported family separation at the border.

Bhatia said Taylor’s expertise was in counterterrorism and national security, and that Taylor would be playing that role with Google and “not in the immigration space.”

Further, Bhatia said press reports about Taylor were inaccurate because Taylor didn’t formulate the travel ban. Bhatia did acknowledge that Taylor publicly defended the ban.

Bhatia appeared to reference a BuzzFeed News report that said Taylor defended the travel ban.

Finally, the recording included questions around a Chrome extension employees believed was meant to monitor large gatherings. The extension automatically reported any staffer that created a meeting event with more than ten rooms or 100 participants. Managers claimed the extension was to help reduce potential calendar spam.

Those interested in listening to the full recording can find it here.

Source: Washington Post Via: Engadget