Don’t dis “don’t be evil”

Dear Steve Jobs,

We have some Apple products in our household. Also, I’m an employee of Google.

“Don’t be evil” is not bullshit. I and a lot of my colleagues work there precisely because of that mantra, and many of us are prepared to pack up and leave if we ever discover Google straying meaningfully from it. Gratifyingly, opportunities arise often in which to apply “don’t be evil” to a business or engineering decision, and a culture of vigorous and principled internal debate helps to ensure we choose correctly. Not all cases are black and white, of course (though some are), and it’s possible to err, but on the whole we do pretty well, non-evil-wise, especially compared to, well, every other publicly traded technology company.

In short, I take your remark as a personal insult, not to mention a telling comment on your own sense of right and wrong and, by extension, that of your company. I would welcome a sincere retraction, failing which I will have to reconsider continuing to be an Apple patron.

– Bob

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