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Rogue Installations Outside Google's Venice HQ Equate The Company With Soviet-Era Labor Camps
Google has been in the middle of a press whirlwind this week after former employee Jason Damore circulated a memo arguing gender pay gaps have a basis in biology, proceeded to get fired, released a video saying he was upset and hurt by getting fired, and started gaining traction with alt-right communities who threatened to dox Google employees who disagreed with Damore's memo. These threats were severe enough to convince CEO Sundar Pichai to cancel a company-wide town hall to discuss the memo.
Now the drama has descended down the coast to Google's Silicon Beach campus in Venice. A pair of benches at a bus stop a block away from the building appear to show an updated look.
The bench on the left appears to show Steve Jobs' famous "Think Different" Apple ad from 1997 across from a photo of Pichai in a similar pose, but with the words "Not So Much" under the Google logo. The bench on the right has refashioned the Google name into the word "Goolag," a play on words with gulag, the name for Soviet-era forced labor camps. The search bar underneath says "Search for diversity of thought somewhere else."
Damore claims he has been the victim of an anti-free speech smear campaign, and many online alt-right communities agree with him. Pichai said Damore "cross[ed] the line by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace."
A tweet from earlier this week showed Damore wearing a t-shirt with the same logo. It is unclear whether he actually runs the account.
Similar versions of the logo appear elsewhere near Google's campus.
Right-wing street artist Sabo appears to take credit for the new posters plastered near the campus. LAist has reached out to the artist to confirm but has yet to hear back.
Update: This sure looks like confirmation (unsavoryagents is Sabo's Twitter handle):