Google Launches Voice-to-Twitter Service To Help Protesters in Egypt
A group of engineers from Google, Twitter and SayNow (which Google acquired last week) were hard at work building a speak-to-tweet service for protesters in Egypt this weekend.
“We hope that this will go some way to helping people in Egypt stay connected at this very difficult time. Our thoughts are with everyone there,” Ujjwal Singh, co-founder of SayNow, and Google product manager Abdel Karim Mardini wrote in a blog post.
Note: It is interesting that Google is getting involved in this uprising by offering assistance to the protestors. I don't believe Google has so publicly gotten involved in a civil insurrection before.
Google Executive Missing in Wake of Egypt Protests
An executive for Google Inc. is missing in the wake of Egypt’s tumultuous protests, according to his brother... Wael Ghonim, whose LinkedIn profile says he is head of marketing for the Middle East and North Africa at Google, hasn’t been heard from since Friday at 6 p.m
Later, he sent a tweet that said he was going to join the Egyptian protests despite “all the warnings I got from my relative and friends.”
On Friday, he tweeted: “Very worried as it seems that government is planning a war crime tomorrow against people. We are all ready to die.”
I'm seriously against this. Don't mistake popular opinion for a reason for Google's meddling in goverment affairs. Really, you want Google deciding what's right for your country? I would be seriously po'ed if an American corporation meddled in the affairs of my gov't, even if I disagreed with the actions of the gov't. The hubris displayed by Google here is unlike any corporation I've ever seen. They are an American company, not something that should be meddling in foreign affairs.
This also has serious potential to backfire. Google sticks it's nose into an independent countries current leadership and they end up with something worse than what they have now. What if they get a new leadership that decides that executing people is a good thing. I for one will drop ownership of that right at Google's doorstep if that's what Egypt ends up with.
There's a reason most countries' leaders are tiptoeing around things right now. Google's likely to learn the hard way to do the same thing - after they get some folks killed.
And as I was concerned about. It now seems that Anderson Cooper's popular viewpoint that the gov't in Egypt=bad is something not shared by much of the population of Egypt. Turns out there's a whole pile of Egyptians not looking to overthrow the gov't.
The problem isn't politics - I have no idea if the gov't there is good or bad, or should be overthrown or not. The problem is that Google doesn't know that either, yet as an American corporation they've taken specific steps to counter measures put in place by a foreign gov't.
So now we've got Google fanning the flames in something that is no longer as clear cut as good vs. evil. This, in an area of the world that already resents American intervention.
This has all the markings of being one of the worst moves by an American company abroad, ever.
Unless you thing Google should be circumventing restrictions put in place by foreign governments?