Google cancels staff meeting over fears of online harassment

The Google logo is shown reflected on an adjacent office building in Irvine, California, on August 7, 2017. (REUTERS/Mike Blake)
Updated 11 August 2017

Google cancels staff meeting over fears of online harassment

IRVINE, USA: Alphabet’s Google canceled on Thursday a company-wide meeting scheduled to discuss the controversy over a memo opposing diversity policies, the company said, citing concerns about personal attacks on employees from far-right commentators.
The company meeting was called to discuss the fallout of Google’s decision on Monday to fire an engineer, James Damore, after he posted a memo on Google’s internal network arguing that the company’s dearth of female engineers was because women were genetically less well-suited to software engineering than men.
Google said Damore violated its code of conduct and his actions advanced harmful gender stereotypes.
In an e-mail seen by Reuters on Thursday, Google Chief Executive Sundar Pichai said some company employees were being named personally on websites in relation to the incident.
“Googlers are writing in, concerned about their safety and worried they may be ‘outed’ publicly for asking a question in the Town Hall,” Pichai wrote. “In recognition of Googlers’ concerns, we need to step back and create a better set of conditions for us to have the discussion.”
He said the company was exploring other forums for the discussion in the coming days.
Damore, who criticized in his memo “Google’s left bias” and “ideological echo chamber,” has since become a hero to some on the far right, who have attacked what they characterize as politically correct groupthink in Silicon Valley.
Damore claimed in a complaint filed on Monday to the National Labor Relations Board that he had been subject to “coercive statements” at Google.
Milo Yiannopoulos, an alt-right commentator, posted images on Facebook on Wednesday taken from social media profiles of several people who identified as working for Google. Some of the Google employees also identified as gay or supportive of diversity efforts.
“Looking at who works for Google,” Yiannopoulos wrote on Facebook. “It all makes sense now.”


Libya’s NOC says production to rise as it seeks to revive oil industry

Updated 22 September 2020

Libya’s NOC says production to rise as it seeks to revive oil industry

  • Libya produced around 1.2 million bpd – over 1 percent of global production – before the blockade
  • Libya’s return to the oil market is sustainable

LONDON: Libya’s National Oil Company said it expected oil production to rise to 260,000 barrels per day (bpd) next week, as the OPEC member looks to revive its oil industry, crippled by a blockade since January.
Oil prices fell around 5 percent on Monday, partly due to the potential return of Libyan barrels to a market that’s already grappling with the prospect of collapsing demand from rising coronavirus cases.
Libya produced around 1.2 million bpd — over 1 percent of global production — before the blockade, which slashed the OPEC member’s output to around 100,000 bpd.
NOC, in a statement late on Monday, said it is preparing to resume exports from “secure ports” with oil tankers expected to begin arriving from Wednesday to load crude in storage over the next 72 hours.
As an initial step, exports are set to resume from the Marsa El Hariga and Brega oil terminals, it said.
The Marlin Shikoku tanker is making its way to Hariga where it is expected to load a cargo for trader Unipec, according to shipping data and traders.
Eastern Libyan commander Khalifa Haftar said last week his forces would lift their eight-month blockade of oil exports.
NOC insists it will only resume oil operations at facilities devoid of military presence.
Nearly a decade after rebel fighters backed by NATO air strikes overthrew dictator Muammar Qaddafi, Libya remains in chaos, with no central government.
The unrest has battered its oil industry, slashing production capacity down from 1.6 million bpd.
Goldman Sachs said Libya’s return should not derail the oil market’s recovery, with an upside risk to production likely to be offset by higher compliance with production cuts from other OPEC members.
“We see both logistical and political risks to a fast and sustainable increase in production,” the bank said. It expects a 400,000 bpd increase in Libyan production by December.
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies led by Russia, are closely watching the Libya situation, waiting to see if this time Libya’s return to the oil market is sustainable, sources told Reuters.