Wednesday, February 09, 2005

what's going on?

hi everyone. it's been a hectic two weeks but i'll have some new posts ready soon. if you want up to the minute updates, just subscribe to my RSS feed. in the meantime, to take advantage of the traffic, i've added adsense to my website on the sidebar. don't worry, all proceeds will be going to charity :).

also, i want to thank those in the community that have been so supportive. for those who are leaving disparaging comments: if you want to have a real conversation, i'm open. don't be an anonymous troll - stand behind what you say and put your email address on it.

thanks and stay tuned...


Blogger Calvin Lawson said...

Don't let the man get you down. I mean, google is cool and all that, but they're still a big corporation, and hence they are "the man".

2/09/2005 05:04:00 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

mark... whas goin on? call me

2/09/2005 05:11:00 PM  
Blogger dampfplauderer said...

rss != atom

2/09/2005 06:06:00 PM  
Blogger John Doe said...

Hey I know how it feels, I worked for a company for over 3 years. I was resposible for the the planning and migration of there internal servers from NT 4 to 2000 and migrating there workstations to XP from 98. The day after i completed the XP migration and handed over the CD's i was canned because a few people complained about me. What these complaints where they never told me even after asking. I'm still praying that they will someday go out of business as they put me out. But atleast with google i am sure they will be swallowed up by MS in time and you should just be happy that it's only a matter of time before ms search and there offerings leave google in the dust and are forced to file chapter 11 then you can sleep well:-) well thats my 2 cents and rant, i'm still pretty ticked at what happen to me but what comes around goes around and everyone gets theres at some point...

2/09/2005 06:11:00 PM  
Blogger Allen Miller said...

i'm sorry you got fired.

2/09/2005 06:16:00 PM  
Blogger Curtis said...

In regards to John Doe, you think that Google, the corporation, will be swallowed by Microsoft? I am not sure that you completely understand how big Google has and will become in the near future; there is nothing to suggest that Microsoft will swallow them. As for Mark, I understand your motivation for releasing this information, but don't you think your actions are foolishy immature at best? Even if you weren't reporting vital, important, or truthful information about Google, it was the simple fact that you were, and I would have fired you as well, especially if you came from Microsoft. I wish you the best of luck in the future and will simply hope that you do not abuse your two seconds of fame with your blog.

2/09/2005 06:48:00 PM  
Blogger CarEduRo said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

2/09/2005 07:19:00 PM  
Blogger CarEduRo said...

Doc, hablas español? Dime la verdad, esto de Google y todo lo demás ¿era para probar si Google desactivaba tu blogger? o ¿para llegar a la fama al menos por unos meses? Si deseas escribirme simplemente busca mi perfil y cambia el por o el dominio de tu correo que indicas y ahí nos vemos, en inglés si prefieres.

Por cierto buen negocio eso de los anuncios eh...

Saludos y suerte, por cierto ¿qué edad tienes?

2/09/2005 07:22:00 PM  
Blogger Steven said...

Did Microsoft hire you to spy on Google? That's what my sister's brother's cousin's nephew's dead grandfather told me...

2/09/2005 07:59:00 PM  
Blogger Jollian said...

Although I agree that it was a slip-up that could have been avoided regarding the previous sensitive google info in your blog, I am hoping that there were greater issues and more to your leaving Google than this.

The company I work for in NZ is substantial in size and has a strong emphasis on employee blogs both on social and internal business comunication aspects which have a HUGE positive impact on performance.

Many people look up to Google, and an insight into the inner workings both raises the profile and should help improve internal situations within the company.
Communication is everything and often hard to encourage in between funtional company units at the best of times. Knocking it on the head is a big jump backwards.

These events have served only to reflect very poorly on Google. Chin up old bean :-)

2/09/2005 08:13:00 PM  
Blogger jwfbean said...

I have been trying to get hired at google for two years. I can't believe the opportunity you wasted by being a little too verbose on your blog.

I've been reading through it and while I can understand your desire to share the details of working at a place like Google, it's completely inappropriate to tell the world about a Google sales meeting, or to go into detail about the (free) shuttle with broken internet access, or to opine about the more sinister/manipulative reasons behind Google's benefits packages. Of *course* the generous benefits packages is to make you more productive. Why else would a company give a hoot about its employee morale?

You shared things in your blog in a public forum that are best shared with friends and family over drinks. I'm sorry that you got canned, and while I think they were a little harsh, I don't think the company was out of line.

2/09/2005 08:52:00 PM  
Blogger Karthik Kumar Viswanathan said...

Aww man! This thing sucks... So, did google lose it's competitive edge or what? This isn't quite right!!

2/09/2005 09:02:00 PM  
Blogger jdragon said...

I"m sure google can survive without this mole.

2/09/2005 09:04:00 PM  
Blogger Nick said...

hey mark... sorry about the termination... good luck for the future!! :P

2/09/2005 09:46:00 PM  
Blogger David Rodecker said...

Mark. I think your open, disruptive, yet ingenious wit would be significantly better utilized in a young, thriving, innovative and ground shaking company. We need to talk and make your position and command more Relevant. Email me when you are ready to put things in high gear.

2/09/2005 10:14:00 PM  
Blogger Qalam said...

I guess when google is facing intense competition from Microsoft, yahoo, aol, etc, they cant be taking chances of their trade secrets being spilled on the internet.

But I must say the line should be drawn somewhere. A person should be able express his feelings about free lunches, or bad health plans. Things that otherwise be in public domain anyway. I should be able to call the Human resources and ask about their health plans.

If there is more to this such as disclosing secrets discussed in a meeting or what you are going to do in the future with 'adsense' then its a problem and it warrents termination.

But as it stands I dont think corporations should take criticism about their health care plan offering or stock options this seriously.

2/09/2005 10:38:00 PM  
Blogger jdragon said...

You idiots, the line was drawn when he disclosed their financial outlook! Duh...Google is lucky the SEC didn't catch on. It could've been a big hoo-hah given the fact lock-up epiration is nearing.

2/09/2005 10:57:00 PM  
Blogger neo said...

I want to report a bug in gmail. I am unable to find a platform to do so. Please let me know where to do it.

2/10/2005 12:57:00 AM  
Blogger Rakele said...

I worked for's crap. I hope soon the rest of the world can see that.

Good luck, Mark, There's another future outside Gugol

2/10/2005 02:05:00 AM  
Blogger chunkybacon said...

Good luck Mark! Whether Mark made a mistake or not isn't really the matter - getting fired is a pretty traumatic experience and can give you a huge dent in your self-esteem.

Chin up... and best of luck.

i cant help wondering if Google are starting to lose their edge - they could have handled this a bit better. Whether you think Mark deserved to be fired or not, it's all bad PR for Google, and has taken the shine off their cuddly "dont be evil" image.

I read somewhere that Google HR got 400 complaints from Googlers about Mark's postings - so , rather than confront Mark directly, these Googlers went behind his back and complained to HR anonymously. Oh dear - doesnt that sound like any other big corporate , doesnt it?

2/10/2005 02:32:00 AM  
Blogger ironmaiden said...


Im kinda feeling sorry after seeing what happened to you.frankly, didnt expect this from google...cmon!always had this feeling that these guyz are different, but looks like this is another wolf in a sheep's clothing...or is it the other way around!
companies are in no way different than communist governments...both try to curtail an individual's freedom of speech, action and thoughts...people! welcome to the real world, if you thought the soviet union(or the communist block..or whatever) was kaput, finished...well, think this very different..a guy getting fired for talking his this democracy..i think not!
nyways, mark...a lot of people(including me) share your angst(if any!) after this incident and sincerely wish that you end up getting a better job..just one catch to it..not at microsoft..

2/10/2005 04:20:00 AM  
Blogger paparatti said...

Hey Mark;

This truly sucks. I don't believe that you've done anything horrifically wrong - maybe a little dumb, but nothing wrong and worth being fired over. I've lost a lot of faith in Google as a company because of this case, and I hope you set the story straight in regards to what happened.

Good luck for the future, please keep blogging, and keep your chin up.

2/10/2005 04:26:00 AM  
Blogger TuckerMax said...

After the intial sypmathy cry for Mark you have to SEE THE REASONS he got fired. I mean come on people. DID YOU ACTUALLY READ THE WHOLE BLOG.

Google is like the first black kid in an all white school. Right so he gets there and for a while EVERYONE is going to watching everything he does. In this case bad publicity is BAD publicity. That is why they fired MArk. He made the black kid look like bad.

I think its funny as hell.

2/10/2005 05:32:00 AM  
Blogger Khang Toh said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

2/10/2005 06:50:00 AM  
Blogger Khang Toh said...

Sad to see you going thru all this at this age. But I guess you sort of had it coming .. I hope the firing would mark the end of your dispute with google and hopefully they will not be much of a hinder in getting your next job since, I guess everyone remembers that particular clause in the employee agreement that you signed, which says you are not allowed to work any rival companys, in simple terms.. Can you think of any sizable dotcom that is not competing against google?

Amazon? - not good, since they came out
Yahoo? - obviously not good....
Ebay? - maybe....
Microsoft? - don't even think about it..........

Good luck in your future endeavors!!!

2/10/2005 06:53:00 AM  
Blogger Nathan Weinberg said...

Mark, on behalf of the rest of the blogosphere I apologize for all of us pointing the spotlight at you. We believed Google would utilize you to improve its image, when instead it decided to prove that image is well-deserved.

Google has a corporate culture that believes that its people are smarter than anyone else and that no one else deserves to work there, and no one deserves to know what goes on inside. Mark came in and started speaking to the world, and that frightened 400 Google employees who like things as they are, and didn't want someone ruining the bubble they've built. So they canned him.

Yes, Mark posted things that can warrant a firing. He wasn't the first to, and he won't be the last. He wasn't fired because of anything he said. He was fired because he was new and threatening the company with change and progress and accountability. There is no "right" in that reason, just a corporate culture that wants to live in its bubble and make its money. Maybe they are entitled to it. Then again, there are going to be those like Mark that have their careers suffer as a result.

2/10/2005 07:11:00 AM  
Blogger John Doe said...

He was fired, as long as he didn't leave the company to work for a competiter that contract should be void and he can go anywhere he wants. If they take him to coart for some crap about working for a competitor when he worked there for 1 week then i would take them to court for violating your first amendment "right to free speech" and wrongfull firing hey in the US you can sue anyone for anything you just need to find a judge that will see things your way, or in most cases companies tend to take things out of court and pay the other side off to shutup. In any case if you where fired for this blog and nothing more then i would say that was wrong because i didn't see anything all that bad about google on the site not like you where bashing other employee's or the way the company treats employee's it all sounded positive to me?

2/10/2005 07:13:00 AM  
Blogger Sunil said...

Hey Buddy,

This really sucks! Best of luck for your future.

Now you have worked with both Microsoft and Google, which is better you think?

2/10/2005 07:22:00 AM  
Blogger Humble Kid said...

I don't understand what insider financial information it was if the information was distributed in a large hall with over a thousand of people inside. I am sure the information would be leaked out anyway.

2/10/2005 07:26:00 AM  
Blogger Pariah Entity said...

This is how my friends and I feel about this... Google has taken a huge black eye over this. There was nothing that this guy shared which was sensitive information. The financial stuff that was posted had no SEC implications, it was speculative at best. In fact, any one of you geniuses could have figured out their profits were growing by their last financial report. Are there high school students posting in here or what? I guess some of you slipped by that 90% thing huh.

Since I know Google employees are reading this (and posting in here), hey guys grow up. Your a joke. Any one of you who is happy this guy was fired is a joke. Seriously there are a lot of people out here thinking what pricks you are. You aren't a free thinking company. You are out here trying to stiffle free speach and freedom of expression. How great that our remaining "dot com leader" is such a bunch of prissy candy asses who can't handle a little expression or constructive critisism.

The fact that there are people saying his firing was justified just further shows how pathetic we are becoming as a society. Probably many of you are people who have complained or made inflamatory comments about your job to your family and friends in the past. You've probably left business meetings and shared those comments with your spouse... What if they passed it on and somehow it got back to the company and they fired you. Same thing.

Anyway, I will stand by my earlier comment that NOTHING was out of place in this blog. It's someone being honest and up front in a society which is starting to appreciate that sort of thing. I sincerely hope Microsoft gets motivated and turns the dictatorship Google into a Netscape, Novell, Artisoft, Lotus, Wordperfect, or IBM OS/2 (I could go on and on but I think you get the picture). You think your company is untouchable, think again. Good luck tools, enjoy your free press and good fortune that Bill Gates has gotten fat, happy, and uninspired.


2/10/2005 07:39:00 AM  
Blogger Brendon said...

Hello Mark

I've followed your blog with interest from the very first day or 2 you started. As a guy with a business (and a guy who, I hope, is fairly tolerant and open minded) I would have fired you instantly upon your publishing of your indiscrete blogs.

No matter the size of the business, a business has commercial considerations as a significant component of its ethos. Your blogs had significant potential to damage the company and, as you were a new employee, I was amazed at what you wrote.

Developing a team culture is imperative for any company. Your blogs indicate without question that you weren't willing to be a team player and you seemed to find some joy in documenting the what you saw as the wrongs of the company.

Not really sure what your motivation was.

2/10/2005 08:01:00 AM  
Blogger Prasad said...

I am sorry to hear that your comments got you into trouble at google. One thing I do not understand is why google had to go all the way to let you go. A slap on the wrist for divulging company secrets would have been enough.

This is even more puzzling to me because I always felt google was an open organization with core values such as "do no evil". In addition to many things "do no evil" for me would mean speak your mind, and respect others who speak their mind.

There could be one of two reasons for google's reaction:
a. They are now a big public company and have to behave like grownups. Being a grownup would mean have mature policies and processes and apply them consistently.
b. There core values have changed along the way. If the later is the case then this does not bode well for google, as adherance to companies core values are what makes a company great.

2/10/2005 08:02:00 AM  
Blogger Victor Ramayrat said...

I agree Prasad. It is a sad thing to see someone fired for this kind of deal. I have been in that position before and there really is nothing that anyone could do to comfort or pacify the feeling you get out of it.

A termination is a termination regardless of the story behind it. Now you have to check that box in every employment application about termination.

Good luck Mark and get things going!

2/10/2005 08:28:00 AM  
Blogger Chris said...

Welcome back!

2/10/2005 08:33:00 AM  
Blogger TuckerMax said...

Besides getting canned less then a month after getting hired, the funnier thing is Mark using this blog to financially gain. I hope to god you cease and desist.

Kill yourself now, do us all a favor.

Tucker Maxx , asshole extraordinaire.

2/10/2005 09:02:00 AM  
Blogger ivanpope said...

Probably more to this than meets the eye.
That said, Google sure looks to me like a company with a lot of money and no plan. Running round buying things, launching things, giving out free lunches. There is no such thing as a free lunch.
Remember, there have been plenty of multi-billion dollar companies in the recent past that no longer exist.
I thought Google's thing was 'do one thing and do it well'. Now they do about twenty things, and it's hard to see what the mission is.
Still Googling though ...

2/10/2005 09:20:00 AM  
Blogger PhantomStar said...

AKA Moron
"Besides getting canned less then a month after getting hired, the funnier thing is Mark using this blog to financially gain. ..."

From the Blog.
"don't worry, all proceeds will be going to charity :)."

Read the blog before you post.

2/10/2005 09:26:00 AM  
Blogger Qalam said...

I agree with the person who said that this gives Google a black eye. Now they are seen as this giant, like microsoft or walmart etc that does not tolerate freedom of expression.
When a person gets a job at a company, he/she signs an agreeement not to disclose secrets. Someone please make me feel stupid and explicitly point out what exactly was the big (or small) secret that he posted. I stil dont consider 'speculations' such as 'google giving dinners to employees just because google wants them to work late hours' is anything other than free speech and speaking of ones mind. I dont think there was anything in his blog that disclosed financial information.

I must also point out to those people that wants google destroyed by MS or yahoo that google stil has alot of good points. Google may have made a mistake in this case but they are stil on the right tract when it comes to keeping the internet alive. If it was for Microsoft, they would stil have us use the stupid windows search that doesnt work. OR keep us use their puny Hotmail with 2mb worth of storage and annoying banner ads. If it was upto yahoo, they would have us search the internet with results displayed not becuase they are relevent but because someone has paid them to list them on the first page.
What I would like to happen is a more balanced competition. Google keeping microsoft, aol, yahoo and others on their toes while they do the same to google. The consumer benefits in the end. I dont want microsoft or google for that matter, own the internet and then sit on their rear end and dont innnovate. Microsoft has a history of doing that. After taking over the browser market, they didnt come up with a single innovation until now when they are caught off guard by firefox.

2/10/2005 09:35:00 AM  
Blogger Nate said...

Sorry to hear about your situation - from the information I've seen, it sounds like a raw deal. Gotta love at-will employment...

I have a serious question that you, of all people, could probably give some great input on. Basically, if you were running a company, what policy would you put in place to give your employees the necessary guidance to prevent this very situation from happening?

2/10/2005 09:53:00 AM  
Blogger UG said...

Hi Mark..just wanted to let you know that you got a good thing going on here, I believe what Google did was outrageous and a knee jerk reaction, I can't believe the guys who bought Blogger actually fired an employee for using that very service, Goggle's becoming more and more like an army camp and is ebbing away from the democratic system it claimed to be.

I'll be visiting regularly and I wish you the best with this blog.

2/10/2005 09:57:00 AM  
Blogger Narkoleptik said...

It must really suck having the whole blogosphere knowing you got canned. That said, keep you chin up and keep posting.

2/10/2005 10:46:00 AM  
Blogger Mahesh said...

Its shattering to get fired no matter what the reason is. I feel that google being this secretive about its business will backfire. I mean what company makes the head CHEF talk to investors in investors meeting and not the CFO..

Good luck and I am sure you will have no problem finding another job pretty soon. no evil is changing to "others do no evil ..we will if we want to!!!" Kind of long it wont catch on :(

2/10/2005 10:52:00 AM  
Blogger XpsGuy said...

I'm sorry, Mark, that you are no longer working at Google, but I'm not overly sympathetic. You made a few really boneheaded moves. Lets see:

(1) You made insider statements about financial matters. Quote: "the weight of the raw numbers is undeniable. both google's profits and revenue are growing at an unprecedented rate". You learned this in a product meeting annd shared it with the world. That's a *major* no-no, and well within firing criteria.

(2) You disparaged what is widely reguarded as a generous benefits package, placing the most cynical spin on it possible. I suspect this successfully alienated you from your new co-workers, making it diffficult for you to continue working with them.

There were some really boneheaded lines like "between all these devices designed to make us stay at work, they might as well just have dorms on campus that all employees are required to live in." You aren't *required* to take advantage of any of the benefits you disparaged. You could always pass on the lunchtime vollyball games, drive yourself to work through Bay Area traffic, use a dentist that's an hour away, or, like me, pay $8/day for really crappy food in a no-options cafeteria, and another $80/month for the 'priviledge' of a PPO health plan.

Your take on your benefits was *incredibly* cynical. Of *course* Google is trying to make life easy for it's employees, I presume on the assumption that "happy == productive". I noticed you did not, nor were you requried to, take down those disparaging comments, so the suggestion that you were fired over them seems farfetched. But I'm sure they did little to endear you to your co-workers. And I suspect your leaving was more about that than any hypothetical "no negative comments in blogs" policy that other posters have speculated now exists at Google.

I don't blame Google for your leaving. You made your own bed. But don't let it get you down. We all do boneheaded moves now and again. Hopefully, you'll learn from this, be a little more patient, a little more discrete, and a little less cynical in the future.

Live and learn. Good luck.

2/10/2005 10:59:00 AM  
Blogger Charlie and Marcela said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

2/10/2005 11:02:00 AM  
Blogger Charlie and Marcela said...

Okay, so I see what's been pointed out... eh, doesn't seem like that big a deal. But hey, I've been surprised so much by the actions of people here in the US lately... the gulibility, the fundamentalism, the blind following of corporate and political icons... ek. I'm moving to anothe country.


2/10/2005 11:05:00 AM  
Blogger Dimitar Vesselinov said...

Fired For Blogging? Not Exactly...

Mark Jen & Office Politics 101
"Since Google blogger Mark Jen got the ax there's been a lot of talk about whether or not the move was fair on Google's part.

Naturally this leads in to the bigger issue of whether or not employers have the right to lay down policies outlining acceptable blogging behavior (or, to put it more bluntly - censor their employees).

Among all the buzz (i.e., articles cobbled together from what little we've heard from Jen) comes this dose of common sense from Techdirt. The post takes a step back, removing the method of delivery (blogging) from of the equation and focusing on the content (what Jen actually said).

We agree that Jen was fired for what he was saying, not how he was saying it. What he was saying was negative stuff about his employer that included bagging on his compensation (big no no), disclosing the details of his compensation (even bigger no no), and describing HR policies and procedures of a company notorious for its secrecy.

Is it any wonder he got fired? Are we taking crazy pills here? Anyone with the most rudimentary knowledge of office politics and acceptable standards of behavior knows this stuff.

And if Jen doesn't know, then why? Aren't Google employees supposed to be the cream of the crop? If he didn't realize that word gets around in the blogosphere, what's he doing as an Associate Product Manager, where one of the main tasks is, as Jen himself puts it, "Coming up with new offerings that would revolutionize the way people use computers and the internet." Hard to revolutionize with your head where the sun don't shine.

Bottom line: The cardinal rule of office politics hasn't changed - whether you're gossiping over cocktails with a coworker or blogging by yourself in your basement - what you say can (and will) come back to you."

Anyway, Marc, I'm sorry that you got fired...

2/10/2005 11:38:00 AM  
Blogger TuckerMax said...

Hey phantomfuck, If believe everything anyone says then email me, I have some Super Bowl 2 tickets for sale.... The BIG REMATCH.

Shut up idiot. You are not woman enough to fight with me.

2/10/2005 12:04:00 PM  
Blogger Jake said...

You know, when you openly dis your (new!) employer, well, unemployment is what you get.

2/10/2005 12:28:00 PM  
Blogger dan said...

"I can't believe the guys who bought Blogger actually fired an employee for using that very service."

He wasn't fired for using the service, he was fired for misusing the service.

Their ownership of Blogger doesn't mean their employees can do anything with it. Just like a Microsoft employee could be fired for writing a virus, even if they wrote it with Microsoft Visual C++. If a blogger divulges sensitive company information, it doesn't seem all that unreasonable to let them go.

2/10/2005 12:30:00 PM  
Blogger MBKlusas said...

Great Blog. I think your case with Google will serve as something bigger than just a guy getting fired over his blog. It is raising questions about blogs and freedom of speech, and that is always a good thing.

Need we all fear retribution from our employers for the contents of our blog? These are important questions and it seems as though you are serving as one of the first sacrifices in the hunt for the answer to this question. The fact that you worked for Google just highlights the hypocrisy. Google is for free speech, but not too free.

Great stuff, keep up the good work.

2/10/2005 12:37:00 PM  
Blogger George said...

Move the Ad Sense ads up towards the top of the page. Not everyone that visits this site is going to read past the top one or two postings in order to see the ads and click on them. Just a tip!

2/10/2005 01:16:00 PM  
Blogger mtmatt said...

Hi Mark and welcome to Silicon Valley!

You have no doubt already learned a few things about how this game is played, so I wanted to pass on a few pointers so your next job will have a bit more longevity.

1. The Valley is paranoid. This is mostly out of necessity as competitors fight ferociously for any advantage they can get. "What happens here stays here" is a motto you must adhere to in the valley.

2. The Valley is small. Hopefully you made a positive impact on at least a few folks at Google as you will likely be working with them again some day.

3. Product Managers are business owners. You put yourself in an impossible position by questioning policy before earning credibility. The hard working people who built Google over the last half dozen years likely had little tolerance for the loose lipped new guy.

4. Know your limits. No matter how fluid and mellow your organization appears, people have pride and ownership of their job function. It is the job of PR to espouse the glory of your company and the job of HR to keep you well fed. When your actions cause other organizations undue work or criticism you become a liability instead of an asset.

Good luck to you.

2/10/2005 01:37:00 PM  
Blogger Pariah Entity said...

The writing for Google is on the wall. Google management knows their stock is overpriced even with current growth. I'd sell my shares too instead of becoming a once paper millionaire. Even with their growth, they can't possibly justify a 130/1 PE ratio. Keep dreaming Google common employees. Your options will all be underwater by the time they vest.

2/10/2005 01:40:00 PM  
Blogger crewke said...

When i first met it just was another searchmachine. But she was different on one thing.
The looks.
It looks like a entertainment look not a bussiness look and thats good about google.
It was always my dream to build something like that.
Well you guys where smarter i guess. lolz. Now i have my own site my dream was 40000 unique visitors well now i have everyday 50000 visitors. I'm a happy man. Keep up the good work with google.

2/10/2005 02:33:00 PM  
Blogger Michael said...

After reading all of the posts above, I found that XpsGuy said things most eloquently.

In continuing the spirit of his post, I wish you well in the future Mark.

2/10/2005 02:40:00 PM  
Blogger efashionista said...

As a famous standup comic and writer once said "sounds like vu deja all over again".

Google is walking noisily in the same footsteps that the Netscape investors once stepped. Search engines are a commodity. Semantic search is what people really need. It's all about fuzzy logic. You can punch up ads on keywords all you want but that only covers a small percent of "googling".

I give this company no more than 2 years before its supplanted by new technology. Sounds like Netscape all over again

2/10/2005 03:23:00 PM  
Blogger Steve said...

Ok so I read some of the comments that said that you should have been fired for that blog post. They couldn't be more wrong or stupid.

I actually went back and read the post another 3 times to make sure that I wasn't missing anything.

I don't think that there is anybody who follows google that doesn't know that they can crank out products quickly.

Everyone knows that they allot 20% of their employees time to coming up with "Cool Sh**"

In short I can't figure out what you supposedly gave away.

The two things that strike me as odd about this whole thing are:

1. Google is a MAJOR proponent of blogs. Don't you think it's a little weird that they fired someone for using one.

2. The Google mantra is "Don't be evil". In my opinion they just did a very evil thing.

Thanks and good luck man

2/10/2005 04:13:00 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

Hey Mark,

This is a big part of your life; you're a tech guy in a tech world, and this is out there for the world to see, from now until forever. That said, make sure you keep your chin up and take a pragmatic look at all of this. As a human being you were perfectly in your right to post your honest thoughts about your new employer, but as you know Google has had problems with the SEC in the past, and as you may have not know there are about 20 actively blogging google employees. If you weren't fired for releasing information that possibly violated SEC regulations, then you were likely fired because your fellow employees, who have chinned up and accepted the corporate culture and policy, were offended by your words.

So when I say to be pragmatic, remember that you agreed to work there, you agreed to be a part of their culture, and you agreed in general that you wanted to be paid to be a Googler. Your specific words aside, I have been reading Googler's blogs for a while now, and I was honestly quite surprised when I read yours. Google likely feels no need for a shift in their intra-blogging paradigm, so the logical conclusion was to "live and let live". Only not you with them =)

2/10/2005 06:35:00 PM  
Blogger jdragon said...

Not to worry. Fired bloggers move on to be movie stars in porn flicks...

2/10/2005 09:03:00 PM  
Blogger S A J Shirazi said...

But Google is not the end of the world. Is it?

2/10/2005 10:03:00 PM  
Blogger kernelcrash said...

Micro$oft donates more money annually, than Google profits.

2/10/2005 10:40:00 PM  
Blogger Brian said...

Micro$oft donates more money annually, than Google profits.You must be out of the loop. Microsoft's charity, codenamed "Unlimited Potential", gave an astounding 40 million dollars in 2003.

"Last year alone, Microsoft contributed more than US$40 million in cash and US$224 million in software to nearly 5,000 nonprofit organizations."

2/10/2005 10:58:00 PM  
Blogger Ang said...

Ah you'll find something else. :) Just smile as if nothing is getting to you.

2/11/2005 12:36:00 AM  
Blogger MITDude said...

One thing I do not get why you all believe in this BRAINWASHING of some company being a "do not evil" shop.
People be reasonable not kids...they started with simple to use and decent search but this would get them NO PLACE financially so they VIOLATED OVERTURE PATENTS as overtured claimed in court(=IS THIS NOT CALLED STEALING SOMEONE ELSE's INVENTIONS?) just see the settlement they paid before IPO) this is how they make money. Are they are NOT EVIL. Is this NOT hypocrysy? I consider IPR theft to be a truly disgusting move. If it was not Overture (that got bought by YAHOO)
but some small inventor, the "DO NOT EVIL" boys would drown him in legal bills I guess.
I consider them real bad in fact. Do they NOT claim to adhere to things that they do not represent?
This entire hire from MIT and Stanford snobbishnes...huh..I am from an ivy league school, my elderly respected professors have taught me respect for those that never got any degree but have had passion for science and innovation...from Einstein to Edison. There is a reason why some awesome schools do not use GRE for admitting applicants. It seems I should consider some founders a bunch of jerks and rich daddy kids who assembled 1million from "family and friends" for a startup that were it not connections that got them lucrative deals off the start would have never gotten that FAR. How about DORKUT? Is there not someone SUING for PLAIN SOFTWARE THEFT?
Look guys, arrogance will make the arrogant go down, I remember SUN's arrogance and their behavior just like that of MS. I would never put a dollar into this "do no evil :)))" company long term. For many reasons, among them is the simple one that
I got a buddy who is amazing Dude with a large number of patents
who did not get his degree at MIT just because he chose to work and learn on his own at home (he was at some of the finest schools) and help his sick parent. He did need a job recently as he did not get VC funding so sent his resume to GOOGLE HR managers via website 10 times.
They did not even bother to reply with sense! I think you should TRACE what they do better and make your own opinion.
One more thing to the fired guy. In California they cannot prevent you from working. Slavery is GONE, and just because they fired you :-))) there is no reason to worry. Man, work on your own company, file patents, be a man because all I think this shop is a bunch of arrogants. The real tigers work on their own companies, file patents, and never give up. Why would you want to work for a place like this?
I do not get it. For the free food or dentist or a physician? You missed a tent there did you not?
Man, to be free often means to fight on your own. A bird in cage is also fed. Be a free man - I feel sorry for those that so desperately want to work in that place...people, any entrepreneur will tell you it is for the ones that need to be FED.
I personally would never work for GOOGLE because of the IPR contracts they would expect me to sign.
The world of search is not as they only see it. Their arrogance makes the arrogant come down. I am just amazed at Eric Schmidt - after the PLAYBOY interview I would fire someone too if they treat all EMPLOYEES equal. I saw a FAR MORE FULL OF NONSENSE PRINTED PLAYBOY BLOG OF IMMATURITY that got SEC attention before IPO. the fired guy...If I were you I would laugh.

2/11/2005 01:41:00 AM  
Blogger R. Scholte said...

Google's transparancy stops as soon as you've passed the entrance, a policy every employee probably knows.
I'm concerned about something completely different. Here in The Netherlands I am told that Google works with companies that bring in money by selling Adwords and mislead visitors by using tactics like 'cloaking' and 'scripting'.
I do think that MSN will be tje number one searchengine but there will always be a second in line. Whether that is Google, Yahoo or another SE I really can't predict.
What I do know is that Google is not the owner of there own heart. As soon as this license expires the richest man will appear and swallow the lot.
Goog luck and keep up the good job, a SE marketeer from overseas.
René Scholte

2/11/2005 03:08:00 AM  
Blogger matthew said...

To Jen: sorry for loosing your job, but you will make it anyway! ;-)

To Curtis: yes MS or another big company will sooner or later swallow google, because google has not enough power, money and at least not enough "business value" at all to survive a battle with the existing and/or upcoming giants in the search market.

Just take the google desktop search approach for example. What the he** is google thinking? They try to attack MS on their best known homeland, the windows OSs without beeing strong and fast enough to win such a race...

Also, if google looses some percentage of their advertising market they will get hit hard, if MS would fail completely on the search market they surely will complain but never get broken.

But maybe i am just wrong, these are just some brain flashes of an simple man.

PS: Excuse my english if i am had make to much mistakes... ;-)

2/11/2005 03:46:00 AM  
Blogger Humble Kid said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

2/11/2005 04:01:00 AM  
Blogger Humble Kid said...

To Efashionista,

I can't help to say that from their IPO document, they know that they are going to be Netscape....

Well, for the topic about donation from Microsoft. I think we should also consider the amount from Bill Gates, his Foundation, or maybe even other people like Paul Allen that make the fortune from MS, but donate their 'own' money...

2/11/2005 04:11:00 AM  
Blogger MITDude said...

To Jen: Remember SiliconValley has always been created by those that did not fit some "corporate culture", take Steve Jobs that did not like IBM etc...I think people will see a HOG in those "DO no EVIL" self-proclaimed bozos soon. I am not sure what org it was that considered them the number one privacy threats on the internet! I am totally amazed how childish those who sing those poems to them are. The beauty is the ability to compete and build something better or unknown not become a fan of a free dinner, dentist, physician or a shuttle bus to SF. Frankly...I am saddened by the choices they offer. I like to pick my own dentists, physicians and the road travelled. I am a free thinker. I wish you the same!
Cheer up and do not get your freedom be taken by some fly-by-night (or a bit longer) use-someone-else inventions we-prefer-to-hire-only-from-Stanford arrogant bozos.

2/11/2005 04:18:00 AM  
Blogger TuckerMax said...

I seriously cant beleive how much people care about this, including myself. I am happy nor sad you got fired. I simply understand why you did. That being said, how is the unemployment line?

2/11/2005 05:30:00 AM  
Blogger Peter said...

Mark: this is the best thing that has happened for you. Think positively. If you had NOT blogged the Foo--you would not be getting so much of attentions. Secondly, you now know the ramifications of bloggin with 'comman sense culture'
Harverst your experience and momenents.. Don't let go.. and keep your passion going.. Nobody but yourself can break your soul.. protect that with all your might.. We are here to support you dude

all the bets

2/11/2005 06:08:00 AM  
Blogger Viral said...

I dont understand. Where in his blog does he say he got fired? I dont think he got fired. I read Mark's last few posts over and over again. I just dont get it.

Could somebody point that piece of information out. Thanks.

2/11/2005 08:11:00 AM  
Blogger Arjun Prabhu said...

For all the people here saying google is doing evil, please answer this question....

Would any company risk to hire Mark anymore ?

Assuming he continues his actions.

2/11/2005 09:57:00 AM  
Blogger -- said...

hmm.. doesn't Google own (at least partially) blogger/blogspot? chance in keeping something posted here hidden, if that's the case.

2/11/2005 12:23:00 PM  
Blogger Brian H McKendrick said...

"I guess everyone remembers that particular clause in the employee agreement that you signed, which says you are not allowed to work any rival companys, in simple terms.. Can you think of any sizable dotcom that is not competing against google?"
Having been threatened under a non-compete in the past - it all depends where you live - most states on the East Coast and throughout the MidWest are 'right-to-work' states and these non-compete agreements are not even worth the ink paper they are printed on. Granted, Google does have some pretty deep pockets; but going after you in this manner would seem vindictive. Take as a lesson to not do dumb sh@t.

2/11/2005 02:48:00 PM  
Blogger Todd said...

whooo hoooo, i got my name on this blog finally.

2/11/2005 11:33:00 PM  
Blogger ~MJ~ said...

Hey Mark.
Just goes to show you that freedom of speech isn't really free....
I'm sorry you got dooced, but am sure you'll find something better.
Best of luck to ya.

2/12/2005 05:00:00 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Viral said...
"I dont understand. Where in his blog does he say he got fired? I dont think he got fired. I read Mark's last few posts over and over again. I just dont get it."

Hey, what does "I got terminated from Google" in the blog mean to you?

2/12/2005 06:22:00 AM  
Blogger Viral said...

"Sudhir. P
Hey, what does "I got terminated from Google" in the blog mean to you?"

The Febuary 11th post want up when I posted my comment.

2/12/2005 01:32:00 PM  
Blogger joelbryan said...

Google change the way we look the Internet, look at Microsoft, Yahoo and lot's of other online portals, look how do they changed the way they advertise, how they design their search interface, it's all because of Google's influence, they saw simplicity at it's very best. If companies like Microsoft and Yahoo are still dominating the search market, those companies would outsmart us consumers, releasing beta software's as a full blown software, where's the integrity of that?, that would only provide us slow unreliable information source that would only add up bad repution of the internet. They would only think about their own benefits.

There's no other company that is dedicated to bring useful information to the people other than Google, with integrity of it's software, and provide fully tested products. There's no other company that would spend it's money to scan library books and expired copyrights books that would be available online, Google is the only company that provided us with that kind of approach to the internet.

Don't let Microsoft consume you Google, One day I want my children to read scanned books at Google, One day I like my children to have their own blogs, I won't subscribe to Microsoft services like Encarta, coz all they want is our money. I rather browse the Wikipedia, and contribute about what I know.

I'm sorry man, but I think your a timebomb inside Google, threatening to explode anytime you found useful to say.

2/14/2005 05:03:00 AM  
Blogger MITDude said...

>look how do they changed the way >they advertise,

what a nonsense - I recommend that you find out why Overture and GOOGLE settled before IPO and what the patent lawsuit was all about.

>If companies like Microsoft and >Yahoo are still dominating the >search market, those companies >would outsmart us consumers,

I think you underestimate the power of OPEN source. Most of us do not need big companies to save us.

>releasing beta software's as a full >blown software,

talking of GEEEZEMAIL? I thought it had been released as BETA for months and months.

>where's the integrity of that?,

before you climb the tree of integrity yourself, find out about the Overture lawsuit because the above you wrote is just total nonsense.

>that would only provide us slow >unreliable information source that >would only add up bad repution of >the internet.

bad reputation of the internet? hm...not sure what environment you are in which such perceptions prevail. It is like claiming my new Porsche has bad reputation because it has an awesome engine. Nonsense.

>There's no other company that is >dedicated to bring useful >information to the people other >than Google,

are you on drugs?

>with integrity of it's software, >and provide fully tested products.

fully tested GEEEEEZMAIL in beta?

>There's no other company that would >spend it's money to scan library >books and expired copyrights books >that would be available online, >Google is the only company that >provided us with that kind of >approach to the internet.

you have an amazing perspective.

>Don't let Microsoft consume you >Google, One day I want my children >to read scanned books at Google,


>One day I like my children to have >their own blogs, I won't subscribe >to Microsoft services like Encarta, >coz all they want is our money.

yeah, you are pretty amazing. Do you think we all need a MOM and POP too?

>I rather browse the Wikipedia, and >contribute about what I know.

how about some contribution to your own knowledge on "Overture lawsuit"?

2/14/2005 07:58:00 AM  
Blogger hen said...

hey mark..henry shih here...the younger.

emily liu just filled me in on your termination story. we haven't really kept in touch but i just want to offer my verbal and moral support. as a former diarylander who just switched over to blogspot, and an outspoken who embraces chances to criticize the status quo, i find your story regrettable but inspiring. life aint fair, but there's nothing to do but to do whats right, right? never stop kicking ass, mark. you always have=]


2/14/2005 11:04:00 AM  
Blogger stone_cold said...

You deserved it jackass
working for a true company like google and blowing it for blogging?

What's up your head? your butt.

2/16/2005 12:05:00 AM  
Blogger Just So I Can Post said...

I was already upset with Google after reading of their support of the Democratic Party... then today, I stumbled upon this.

Vermin such as "Tuckermax" are Google employees? I stupidly went to his blog and was immediately disgusted by his porn links. A real winner is Tuckermax. :/ Obvioulsy there are 400 just like him that didn't have the decency to tell Mark to his face that he was making a mistake.

I find it incredible that Google fired this guy for blogging. If they found his blog objectionable, why didn't they simply ask him to take the site down and request he not do such again?

Mark, I am sorry you lost your job after transferring to San Fran, but honestly, after reading the comments from the other Google employees, you are better off unemployed than having to work side-by-side with their ilk. After working at Google, you have no place to but up!

FWIW, I am the IT Director at a large company. Google will be added to the list of restricted sites.

Also, this account can be removed by one of you tyrannical Google employees. I merely created it so that I could post. I'll be darned if I will use anything GOOGLE.

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