Fired engineer calls Google an ideologically driven 'mob' intolerant of scientific debate

James Dimore in his open letter calls Google ideologically driven and intolerant of scientific debate and reasoned argument

James Damore, who was recently fired from Google for a controversial 10-page memo he wrote about gender diversity at the company, has penned an open letter likening his former employers to "the mob".

In the letter, published by the Wall Street Journal, Damore asked: "How did Google, the company that hires the smartest people in the world, become so ideologically driven and intolerant of scientific debate and reasoned argument?"

He wrote that when the document went viral, "the upper management sent angry emails to Google’s human-resources department and everyone up his management chain, demanding censorship, retaliation and atonement."

He further blamed the upper management for "placating this surge of outrage by shaming him and misrepresenting his document."

"The mob would have set upon anyone who openly agreed with me or even tolerated my views," he said.

"When the whole episode finally became a giant media controversy, thanks to external leaks, Google had to solve the problem caused by my supposedly sexist, anti-diversity manifesto, and the whole company came under heated and sometimes threatening scrutiny."

Earlier, YouTube chief executive Susan Wojcicki wrote a response to the document in Fortune where she described this an “unfounded bias” that was “being exposed to a new generation.”

She concluded that there was no truth in Damore's suggestion that there is a biological reason there are fewer women in tech leadership.

Google chief Sundar Pichai said Damore “crossd the line by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in Google's workplace.”

Following the controversy, a survey was conducted by Blind, an anonymous corporate chat app, where they asked its users if they thought Google should have fired Damore. Over 4,000 responses from different companies were received and around 441 Google employees responded. More than half of Googlers said they didn't think it was right for the company to fire Damore.

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Taruka Srivastav

I march to the Indian beat of The Drum.

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