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article imageOp-Ed: Google programmer goofs, posts rant about his employer

By Leigh Goessl     Oct 17, 2011 in Internet
Recently a Google employee caught a lot of web attention after posting a detailed rant about his employer on the company's recently launched social network, Google+.
Unfortunately the rant was supposed to be posted internally to Google folks, not for the world to see.
The programmer, Steve Yegge, appears to be pretty remorseful of his actions. Yegge decided on his own accord to remove his post. In its place he placed an apologetic post and described what happened.
According to Yegge, his original post discussed how he felt Google could be doing a "much better job of thinking from the ground up in terms of services rather than products".
Yegge said, "it was midnight and I am not what you might call an experienced Google+ user, by the time I figured out how to actually post something I had somehow switched accounts, " adding, "I've taken the post down at my own discretion. It was kind of a tough call, since obviously there will be copies. And everyone who commented was nice and supportive."
Yegge also noted the Google PR staff was very supportive and emphasized that the company is "an opinionated company" and doesn't censor employees. Yegge describes the environment as being "super open" internally, thus being comfortable sharing criticism in an open environment, unfortunately through his mix-up the post was a bit more open than intentioned.
Another reason Yegge says he decided to delete his post is because he said it was a "private conversation" between he and his colleagues at Google. He stated that Google is a large company and he is "nowhere near the center of the action" and emphasizes his opinions are his own and that readers should essentially take what he says with a grain of salt.
His current tagline on his profile states "Someday my foot won't fit in my mouth."
The Star reported the rant was 4,700 words long and that many readers "applauded him enthusiastically".
Excerpts included:
“Google+ is a prime example of our complete failure to understand platforms from the very highest levels of executive leadership (hi Larry, Sergey, Eric, Vic, howdy howdy) down to the very lowest leaf workers (hey yo). We all don't get it."
"The Google+ platform is a pathetic afterthought.”
While Google's PR department seems understanding, it's worth noting that even though this rant was not intended to be shared with the public, from the user perspective there may be some agreement. While Google+ is still picking up members, some suggest activity on the network is on a steady decline.
If true, the company may need a revamped strategy to gain more user engagement and activity. In many corners of the web people have commented on how their Google Circles are essentially lacking activity. If this continues the network won't have a leg to stand on when everyone's hanging out on Facebook.
Perhaps a turnaround can start with management getting active.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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