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Dragonfly, ethics, and infrastructure spending

Yesterday’s analysis of the ethical tradeoffs faced by engineers working in the Valley certainly lit up my inbox with responses.
The general thesis of that piece is that startups and tech companies face more — and worse — tradeoffs as they have migrated from the “purity” of the early internet into more socially and ethically complicated spaces like labor, social media, health, and elsewhere. That led me to suggest that:
If you disagree with the ethics of your company, the best course of action — particularly in the strongest employment economy in years — is to find a job more in line with your values.
I was specifically talking about Google’s censored search engine project Dragonfly, but I think the discussion applies to a wide swath of the Valley today.
One subscriber wrote in response:
-1 for this piece as a new Extra Crunch subscriber. If this kind of the theme will be a key part of the Extra Crunch editorial voice, it makes me less likely to renew/recommend. Just a datapoint from one reader.
As always, you can just reply to this email and send me your thoughts, and I appreciate feedback.
One of my major objectives for Extra Crunch is to expand the dialogue around the challenges facing startups and how they conduct disruption. Startups and large tech companies are entering more complicated industries, and the decisions required of founders, engineers, product managers, and everyone are increasingly not black and white.
My sincere hope is that as you read Extra Crunch editorial, you tremendously agree with some articles and vehemently disagree with others. Only be conveying that debate and expanding the range of views can we hope to handle the decisions we face with nuance.

Do tech workers have power to shape the world? What world?


Dragonfly, ethics, and infrastructure spending
Taxi drivers protest Uber in Madrid. Photo by Marcos del Mazo/LightRocket via Getty Images
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