On Cancelling My Google Interview


So, I had an interview scheduled with Google today and I just cancelled it. I had a phone interview a week or so ago and today was when I was supposed to go down for the famous four hour Google-grilling and I just decided that I really didn't want to subject myself to it. I highly doubt I'd get a job there anyways if they were judging me on my technical background (no PhD) and I suck at those puzzles they give you. Like I'd know what "the first ten digits prime in consecutive digits of e" even is. But honestly, I just decided that I wasn't that enthusiastic about working there enough to even bother playing along just to see.

You can read it in my criticism of the Google SMS stuff that I'm not particuarly bullish on Google services and innovation going forward. I like Google Search and I like Blogger, but everything else they're doing is disjointed. They're slowly creating a mess of services with no real cohesive plan and it's just not compelling to me. Orkut, GMail, Froogle, Desktop Search, etc. are all in beta and have no common thread or business plan. How many logins do I need? How is any of this stuff going to make money? Orkut even uses Microsoft tech on the back end, is that a joke? I compare Google to Amazon, eBay, and Yahoo and it seems like amateur hour over there. No excuses that they're younger, I don't think their problems have anything to do with that.

Also, I think that Google has shown a penchant for being duplicitous and mean spirited in a variety of ways, despite their motto of "don't be evil." Two examples: the arbitrary cutting of AdSense websites last year (and subsequent including a gag clause in their T&C after I wrote about it in this weblog) and their blocking of Chinese dissident websites from their news search to appease the Chinese Government. The latter is particularly galling because of their lame excuses about it. Jerry Yang gave a thoughtful and compelling reasons why Yahoo deals with China at Web 2.0. Google just seemed to make excuses. The fact that they claim to be so angelic just makes it worse - there's nothing worse than a hypocrite.

Besides my general feeling about the company, I'm not sure it would make much sense (financial or otherwise) to join now right after their IPO even if they did offer me a job. I mean, what's it gotta be like working there now with a third of the company paper-millionaires? There's got to be a Fuck You I'm Vested feeling flowing through the halls. I mean, many of us on the outside can sense the growing arrogance of Google employees already, it must be crazy working there. (You should see this NDA they sent me!) And with Google's stock at 190.41, what sort of options would I get? "Here's 10,000 options priced at 190. If the stock goes up to 250, you're golden!" I could be wrong about this, but like I said, I didnt' feel like bothering to find out.

Anyways, in terms of work, there's lots of other opportunities pending. I really would like to start my own company if I can get my head out of my ass enough to pull it off. But if I did work at another company, I'd want to be enthusiastic about it and not just take it because it was the "in place" to work, right? I really don't need to enhance my resume any more and I don't need to take another job where I feel the need to quit in six months, right? Right.

Anyways, I figured I'd throw this out there. Nothing like throwing a chance to work at a hot startup out the window to make you want to blog. :-)


Later: This post is getting spun by uptight Googlers into a self-justifying "Russell didn't want to go through our four hour interview, so he decided not to apply." No. I decided that I didn't want to work at Google, then bailed out of the interview so as not to waste a perfectly good afternoon. That is very clear in my post. If I'm really interested in a job - like any normal person - I'll sit through as many hours of interviews as it takes, of course.

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