For the past several weeks, Google has been embroiled in a scandal over a Department of Defense contract. Today, Google Cloud head Diane Greene acquiesced to internal pressure and announced that the company will not seek another contract to analyze drone footage.
Department of Defense Stories June 1
Department of Defense Stories May 30
For the past several months, Google fiercely debated the military applications of artificial intelligence, with many employees opposed to their work being used in weaponry and war settings. This stance would essentially see Google forgo a huge market to Amazon and Microsoft, where employees do not have similar qualms.
A new report today provides some insight on principles that will guide future work, while several positions from within the company have also been highlighted.
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Department of Defense Stories May 14
Since news emerged in March that Google was working with the U.S. military to use machine learning to analyze drone footage, some employees have been debating and protesting the decision. Many Googlers have expressed discontent through a petition, while others are now beginning to quit over the matter.
Department of Defense Stories April 12
Department of Defense Stories April 4
Shortly after word broke that Google was working with the Department of Defense on open-source software to help analyze drone footage, employees began forwarding along a petition internally asking Sundar Pichai to end participation in the project. Additionally, the letter asks that Google bans all future “warfare technology.”
Do you think Google should avoid working with the military or providing open-source software for the government?
Last month, a report revealed that Google was partnering with the Department of Defense on machine learning to analyze drone footage. This project caused an uproar within the company, with Googlers circulating a letter asking Sundar Pichai to drop the project and ban future “warfare technology.”