Google faces lawsuit amid video production unit’s ties to dark religious sect


According to a recent report by The New York Times, Google is defending itself against another lawsuit. It’s not unique to the company these days, but this time it’s due to the alleged influence of a “religious cult” on a business unit. A former video producer with the company, Kevin Lloyd, claims he was fired for drawing attention to the religious cult’s influence.


The religious sect is called the community of friends, with a membership of about 1,600 members, according to Wikipedia, most of them living near a 1,200-acre compound in Oregon House, California called “Apollo.” The group’s beliefs are based on a philosophy called “The Fourth Way”, developed around the turn of the 20th century, which claims that higher levels of consciousness are possible.

The Fellowship of Friends is a registered non-profit church, but previous allegations against the band include alleged sexual abuse by its founder, considered a “prophet” by the group’s supporters. Many of his prophecies did not materialize. Members would be required to give the organization 10% of their earnings. “Religious sect” here is a clear euphemism for “cult”.

According to the New York Times, up to 12 cult members and their relatives were employed by Google at this video production unit (called Google Developer Studio), while other cult members were also employed at various other times. at events. for various roles, during which Google also allegedly bought wine from a company owned by – you guessed it – someone from this cult.

According to the report, the director of the Google Developer Studio is himself a member of the cult and he has already been the subject of a lawsuit alleging that he failed to promote an employee for not being a member. Another video producer who worked for the team claims that unit management abused the hiring process by using contractors (apparently most of the business unit members were also employed as contractors ), thereby reducing the scrutiny they might otherwise face – in other words, making it less likely that a preferential hiring process could be taken. Google is suspected of installing audio equipment in the home of a cult sound designer. A cult member reportedly went to shoots drunk and threw objects at presenters “when he was unhappy with a performance”, but remains a full-time employee at Google. At least one of the people interviewed in the report did not wish to be identified for fear of reprisals.

Lloyd was employed at Google through a contractor and claims that after complaining about religious sect influence in the unit, he was fired. Google says he was fired for performance reasons. Subsequently, he sued Google and the contracting agency.

A Google spokesperson provided Android Police with the following statement:

“We have long employee and supplier policies in place to prevent discrimination and conflicts of interest, and we take them seriously. It is against the law to ask about the religious affiliation of those who work for us or for our suppliers, but we will of course examine such allegations thoroughly to detect any irregularities or improper contractual practices. If we find evidence of policy violations, we will take action. We investigated the concerns raised by Mr. Lloyd in his lawsuit and confirmed that his assignment as a supplier was terminated due to well-documented performance issues.

In a separate statement provided to The New York Times, the president of the contracting agency called the lawsuit “without merit.”

The lawsuit was reportedly filed in California Superior Court in August last year and is still in the relatively early discovery stage.


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