Within weeks of Whitman’s call to Schmidt, eBay was placed on a Google list of “Sensitive” companies, for whom Google placed fewer restrictions on its recruiters except at the executive recruitment level. It was at this time that Google began to internally formalize its illegal wage-suppression pacts—and Schmidt was clearly worried about getting caught.
In early October, 2005, Google’s Senior VP for Human Resources, Shona Brown, emailed Schmidt a draft list of companies on their “Do Not Call” and “Sensitive” lists, and the policy protocols.
During a deposition last year, the plaintiff’s attorney for the Silicon Valley wage theft class action lawsuit asked Sergey Brin, Google’s co-founder, about this incident and others.
[Heimann]: But I’m gathering from your answer that you don’t really recall this at all.
[Brin]: No, sorry.
At this point in the deposition, Heimann shows Brin the March 9, 2007 email from Eric Schmidt to Steve Jobs, assuring Jobs that the Google recruiter Jobs complained about had been summarily fired, and that it won’t happen again.
Brin too was shocked at Jobs’ response. But possibly not for the reason you’d expect.
In late 2005, Jean-Marie Hullot, one of Apple’s (and Steve Jobs’) most valued longtime programmers going way back to Jobs’ NeXT Computer startup, resigned from Apple. Hullot worked for Apple out of Paris, and when he left the company at the end of 2005, his team of four engineers resigned with him.
A few months later, Hullot and his team of engineers negotiated a deal with Google to set up a new Google engineering center in Paris. The “last step”—as Hullot called it—was to get Jobs’ blessing.
In late May 2006, Google’s Alan Eustace formally cancelled the Google project in Paris. […]
Based on your strong preference that we not hire the ex-Apple engineers, Jean-Marie and I decided not to open a Google Paris engineering center. I appreciate your input into this decision, and your continued support of the Google/Apple partnership.
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