Google has been working hard to show us that it has remained true to its ethical principles in recent years. But the company's former head of international relations, Ross LaJeunesse, openly denounced the company.
He published in a critical mood an article on his blog. The 11-year-old Google veteran writes that he resigned because he tried to go with the old company slogan - 'Don't be evil' - while other executives were more interested in accumulating profits.
LaJeunesse argued that a cultural shift that ignored the significance of 'Don't be evil' had gradually entered Google since he started working for the company in 2008.
Until 2019 he left. "The motto 'Don't be evil' does not really reflect the company's values," says LaJeunesse. "It was [then] nothing more than another corporate marketing tool."
Central to his decision to leave was Google's relationship with the Chinese government.
However, the story begins well: in 2010, four years after the search company entered the country, Google became the first non-Chinese company to react to the Chinese government refusing to comply with censorship requirements.
The move threatened Google's presence in the world's fastest-growing Internet marketplace - as well as all the profits it could make from some 400 million users. LaJeunesse reported that "I was proud that the company made this decision".
In the years that followed, things began to change. In 2017, it was discovered that Google was finally working on a new version of an algorithm that provided censorship, made specifically for China, codenamed Dragonfly.
LaJeunesse was not the only one to express concern about the company's new plans to work with the Chinese government. Hundreds of Google employees signed an open letter urging the search company to leave Project Dragonfly, which claimed to make Google a "partner" in human rights abuses and violations.
At the same time, it turned out that the security and privacy teams had abandoned the project. Yonatan Zunger, a 14-year veteran of Google who was responsible for creating the privacy review for Dragonfly, said his human rights concerns were dismissed by the company's head of operations in China.
For his part, LaJeunesse said that "someone who was a strong supporter of human rights" had been completely excluded from the project and another colleague was appointed to lead the Dragonfly policy group's discussions.
Meanwhile, that same year, Google was embroiled in controversy on all sides. About 4.000 employees signed a petition against the company's participation in Project Maven, a partnership with the US Pentagon to develop AI in weapons.
About 12 employees left the company because of their belief that their work should not be used in war operations until Google finally said it would not renew its contract with the Department of Defense.
LaJeunesse reported that although Project Dragonfly was eventually terminated he was given another role "in exchange for my silence".
"But for me, the choice was very clear, I left, for human rights - they cost me my career."
One thing is for sure: Google is still growing fast. It remains to be seen whether the company will be able to restore confidence and retain its employees in the coming years.
But do we ask for much? We must not forget that every company has as its main goal the profit.