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Employee Unrest and Political Neutrality at Google and the New York Times

Employee unrest inside big tech companies remains an important story. Wired reminded us of it this week, with this excellent piece about Google. The company is facing unprecedented pressure from employees on both the left and right who are unhappy about its business positions and the way various groups are treated inside the company. The result: an unhappy place where skirmishes are increasingly boiling over into management crises.

A similar—although not as extreme—situation exists over at the New York Times. About a week ago, Editor Dean Baquet held an employee town hall to quell issues related to covering President Trump’s racist comments. In a subsequent interview he was pretty candid, saying younger Times employees wanted the company to be tougher on the administration while he felt the Times shouldn’t be “the resistance.”

Both buckets of unrest can be traced back to our political climate, generational attitudes and even technology, which is helping workers organize. Of great interest to me is how both challenges are shaped by the business models of their organizations. 

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