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This 54 message thread spans 2 pages: 54 ( [1] 2 > >     
Lawsuit charges Google with age discrimination
Geez, 54 is not old, is it?
loanuniverse




msg:1232108
 11:10 pm on Jul 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

The civil complaint, filed Tuesday in Santa Clara Superior court, alleges Mountain View-based Google fired Brian Reid, 54, as its director of operations in February 2004 because he didn't fit in a culture emphasizing ``youth and energy.''

[kansascity.com...]

 

ogletree




msg:1232109
 11:14 pm on Jul 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

I bet they lose that one. You can't do that.

agerhart




msg:1232110
 11:16 pm on Jul 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

I bet they settle that one.

I have a family friend who went through the same thing with another large corporation.....they settled out of court.

loanuniverse




msg:1232111
 11:19 pm on Jul 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

This is what I don't understand:

....119,000 Google stock options with an exercise price of 30 cents per share. Based on estimates of Google's market value, Reid's stock options probably would have been worth about $10 million after the company's IPO.

$10,000,000 / 119,000 = $84.03 which means that the stock price would have to be $84.33 after the IPO. Either I am missing something or the reporter slept through "Security Analysis and Markets 101".

Regarding the merit of the claim, one never knows all we have is an accusation.

ogletree




msg:1232112
 11:39 pm on Jul 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Anybody got a link that does not require signing up for.

EliteWeb




msg:1232113
 11:44 pm on Jul 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Out of court settlement. Yah registering is lame, someone give me your login and password.

loanuniverse




msg:1232114
 12:12 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

Sorry about that guys, it was not a registration site when I first posted it...

Try this...

[forbes.com...]

skibum




msg:1232115
 3:08 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

The complaint says Google recruited Reid, a technology industry veteran, from his last job as a professor at Carnegie Mellon University West "to correct some very serious problems...with its work force," citing management and morale problems among women in particular.

Ya don't see as many guys on lots of welcoming committees and on the front lines at events.

IITian




msg:1232116
 3:14 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

It would be nice if Google were to post statistics on sex, age, and racial composition of its entire workforce and the executive ranks separately. (Median salary percentile numbers would be helpful too.)

rogerd




msg:1232117
 3:47 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

There's something wrong with the stats in that article:
Just 2 percent of Google's roughly 1,900 employees are under 30 years old, according to the suit. The average age of Google's male workers was 29.7 years old and the average age of women was 28.4 years old when Reid left.

Nevertheless, the charges are fairly believable, particularly when you have people without a lot of experience or training discussing termination. At the University of Notre Dame, a coach was fired by then incoming head coach Bob Davey with the same kind of comment - too old, looking for a newer approach, etc. Ugly lawsuit followed... A rookie mistake that no competent HR person would have made.

skibum




msg:1232118
 4:34 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

Even if that was 2% was reversed, is still seems like the numbers would come out a bit strange.

dvduval




msg:1232119
 5:18 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

...because he didn't fit in a culture emphasizing youth and energy.

1) Could also be because he was old and slow.
2) Or spending too much time getting free massages by the Google staff maseuse.
3) Or maybe he found out about the plan to release the RS-5 Googlebot in 2035.

plumsauce




msg:1232120
 5:24 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

....119,000 Google stock options

guess Google(Page & Brin) didn't really mean to share with Brian Reid.

1) Could also be because he was old and slow.

54 is well seasoned, not old.

could be he was the victim of the young bucks who thought they knew better.

IITian




msg:1232121
 5:51 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

>Just 2 percent of Google's roughly 1,900 employees are under 30 years old, according to the suit. The average age of Google's male workers was 29.7 years old and the average age of women was 28.4 years old when Reid left.

If I had to guess, "under 30 years" is likely "over 40 years." Federal fair employment laws mention 40+ as a protected class. (About 38 employees over 40! Senior non-technical execs should account for most of this.)

percentages




msg:1232122
 6:12 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

Old people are generally wiser, not that Brian Reid, at 54, is by any means old!

Google behaves like an arrogant street gang IMHO.

I don't see how Google can win this case. A swift out of court settlement is called for!

Anyone remember "Logan's run"? Does this sound familiar? All people over 50 need to be terminated!

The young rarely appreciate what the "elders" have to offer, well not until they become elders anyway!

Look at MS, it has just left puberty and become an adult this week.......If Google is around in 10 years time maybe it can do the same ;)

truthbetold




msg:1232123
 6:37 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)


Anti-business people would have us believe that businesses fire people because they are mean and ruthless, and dont care about their people. They always forget to point out that its businesses that are providing jobs and livelihoods for their employees. These people usually have socialistic and anti-capitalistic tendencies.

Business owners have the responsibility to ALL their employees to hire the best talent that will move the company forward, and weed out those that are underperforming or are otherwise not fitting into the culture and bringing others down. This ensures the strength of the company so that all the other hard working and dedicated employees keep all their jobs and continue to grow and prosper in their careers.

This is America and business owners have the right to hire who they feel will help their business and let go people who they feel are hurting their business. They cannot discriminate based on race or age or gender, but who here knows what these managers were thinking when they let this gentlemen go? Who was there to witness this man's performance and can prove that he was doing a great job and the managers let him go because of his age?

I wonder if its possible for the people here who have already comdemened Google as the big bad corporation to admit that its POSSIBLE that this man was let go for performance. In a fair and just society, people are considered innocent until proven guilty. Those that are always anti-business are usually that way due to emmotional reasons rather than any rational reasons in my opinion.

I believe 100% in judging someone soley by their performance and their RESULTS. I dont care what they look like or how old they are. However, the problem with discrimination laws is that they assume that its actually possible to know what a manager was thinking when they let someone go. Only the managers know the true reason for letting someone go.

Think about it folks... do you really think that Google would let this guy go if he was doing a great job and helping the company move forward.? From my experience, its the people who do the poorest job at work that are always the one playing the role of victim and trying to get a free lunch... to make up for the fact that they dont want to get ahead the old fashioned way... through hard work.

(Im sure i will now be labeled as cruel and heartless)

CritterNYC




msg:1232124
 6:55 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

The last paragraph makes an interesting point that goes against the suit's attempt to paint Google with a broad brush:

The suit doesn't mention that most members of Google's senior management team are at least 40 years old. The older executives include: CEO Eric Schmidt, who is 48; Wayne Rosing, vice president of engineering, who is 57; and George Reyes, chief financial officer, who is 49.

Additionally, if you have Firefox installed, get the BugMeNot plugin. A quick right-click on any registration page like the one encountered in the original link and you'll have a login and password.

lorenzinho2




msg:1232125
 7:16 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

< Reid never received a negative job review before his firing, the suit said.

if this is the case, AND he was fired for performance, then G's in trouble. Pretty common with rookie managers - scared to give feedback to underperforming employees, and if that employee falls within a protected group (age, race, gender, etc.), it usually comes back to bite the company. Especially if the manager is saying things like "didn't fit into our youthful culture."

Marcia




msg:1232126
 7:23 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

The usual tack to get rid of people in a protected class, for any reason, is just to treat them so shabbily that they're miserable and/or angry enough to quit on their own. Cowardice? Yep. Stark reality? Yep.

kaled




msg:1232127
 9:06 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

The usual tack to get rid of people in a protected class, for any reason, is just to treat them so shabbily that they're miserable and/or angry enough to quit on their own. Cowardice? Yep. Stark reality? Yep.

Don't know about the US, but that's not allowed in the UK. If you're treated in a manner that forces you to resign, it is legally equivalent to being fired. There is a legal term for this but I can't remember it - I guess I'm too old : I'd better fire myself.

Kaled.

Marcia




msg:1232128
 9:08 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

It isn't allowed here either, Kaled. But it does happen, all the time.

crisscross




msg:1232129
 9:39 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

"Do no evil"?

Pah.

steve40




msg:1232130
 11:09 am on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

Just a comment on this from a 54 yr old,
Maybe if big G had a few more older staff they could control their current model of implementing multiple changes at the same time using experience gained with change management techniques by more mature technical staff.
Google strikes me as company that needs the young smart sharp PHD's to create great new ideas and implement but in a controlled way,

With G going public it is even more important for some maturity to look over the shoulders so they do not lose focus on what they have currently

G has been learning by mistakes can they continue to do so or will one of those mistakes cost them big
steve

Symbios




msg:1232131
 2:11 pm on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

Kaled I think its called constructive dismisal

Liane




msg:1232132
 2:46 pm on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

constructive dismisal
... ding, ding, ding, ding ding! You win the Quepie doll!

I have first hand knowledge of this sort of thing. At 38, I was considered "too old" to be the marketing director of a company I once worked for.

Now that I am in the same age bracket as poor old Brian ... I feel his pain. You are as old as you feel and think, not some arbitrary number "someone" in the personnel department deems as a life altering barrier to quick thinking.

I wonder how Sergy and Larry "feel" now that they aren't exactly considered "kids" anymore? Has the aging process taken its toll on their ability to think, produce and offer up anything of value?

Come on Google! Embrace your elders. Occassionally, we do have "something" of value to offer ... if only the wisdom prevent you from doing something so wreckless as to land yourselves in court with yet another PR nightmare!

blaze




msg:1232133
 3:04 pm on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

Yeah, I bet Sergey and Larry are quaking in their boots.

You, know. I agree with the free market agreement above. In fact, they should abolish the minimum wage and child labor protection laws while they are at it! For that matter, lets throw out building codes too.

Sorry about the sarcasm, but we do not live in an anarchy. We live in a democratic market based economy with a strong culture of justice and fairness. We have laws protecting the old, because like it or not, everyone is going to get old.

They may not be the most productive people but they do provide a connection with our past and with old people. Keeping them on staff will ensure that our businesses will be rounded members of society and not youth crazed versions of Logan's Run.

Chndru




msg:1232134
 3:09 pm on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

I hardly imagine, Google not aware of these discrimations. It would rank as amateurish. Until, we hear from Google, the other side, all these would hardly be any relevant. In every fight with the big guy vs small guy, we assume big guy did something wrong.. hmm..

oaktown




msg:1232135
 3:34 pm on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

What Steve40 is on target for where I sit.

I have often marveled at Google's propensity to implement programs (G-mail?) and algo changes that didn't seem at all ready to bring to the table and found myself thinking that a more experienced management team might have said "let's give this a last, final once-over before release."

When there is no one at the helm who has "been there and done that" before, everything must be learned anew, by trial and error, since there is no prior experience on which to draw. That can be costly indeed and once G goes public with its stock, those costs will not be viewed with alacrity by investors.

And yep, 50 is in my rear-view mirror too;)

mrwhy2k




msg:1232136
 4:57 pm on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

Last year in August at the SES comference Google had a party and there must have been 300 Google employees. Not one of the was over 30 years old. The entire company is comprised of kids right out of college.

msgraph




msg:1232137
 5:03 pm on Jul 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

I have often marveled at Google's propensity to implement programs (G-mail?) and algo changes that didn't seem at all ready to bring to the table and found myself thinking that a more experienced management team might have said "let's give this a last, final once-over before release."

That sums it up imho, but it can also go the other way around where the "experienced" management hampers any innovative products from being unleashed at all. I guess there just needs to be a good balance between the two, which is a tough item in itself.

When you have too many "fresh" yet inexperienced people you get: "Hey dude, look at this program I created that will give you the precise location of the sun when someone searches for weather....Awesome, let's put that in beta and add it into the results right away!", than something more useful. Some experienced personnel would say,"Yeah yeah that's great BUT LOOK, Yahoo and Ask Jeeves are doing this, we need to jump on the ball." There are times when these types of scenarios appear to be happening behind Google's doors.

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