Saturday, February 11, 2006

Do Less Evil

Meant to blog this a couple of weeks ago, but it's so rich, I figured I'd share it now anyway. The IHT's Delving into Davos share the following exchange:
The chiefs of Microsoft and Google traded barbs on a panel Friday afternoon. They were discussing Google's decision to enter China with a self-censored search function.

Speaking about the Google credo "Don't be evil" CEO Eric Schmidt explained how the company weighed the decision to self-censor in China for more than a year before making the decision.

"We even made an evil scale and decided it was more evil not to go in than to go in," Schmidt said.

On hearing that, Microsoft CEO Bill Gates muttered into his microphone: "That's do less evil."

In response, Schmidt said: "I don't want to get caught up in semantics."
Heh. Since it's Microsoft versus Google here, there's an element of Pot meet Kettle, but still. Schmidt says they created an "evil scale" to help make the decision? I mean, isn't this one you can kinda go with your gut on? Methinks one thing most likely necessitated the creation of this scale in the first place: $$$.

Meanwhile, over at Evil or Not? today, where they've created an evil scale of their own, voters have rated Google 75% evil.

(With some apologies to fans of Google; as a designer type, I'm a huge fan of their various online apps/interfaces - just increasingly suspicious of some of their business practices.)

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