don’t be evil
by dm gillis
Google Corporation Convention, Vancouver Convention Centre, May 2027
Google Enterprise is a subsidiary of Google Corporation
Address to the 2027 Google Corporate Convention on the Progress of Google Corporation’s Convict Personality Erasure Project, Presented by CPEP Project Manager, Dr Dagmar Winslow.
…after quiet, polite applause…
Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. It is indeed a pleasure to be here with you in this lovely city.
The question we set out to answer with the Google Corporation’s Convict Personality Erasure Project is a simple one. Now that the Corporation has taken on the task of running the nation’s prisons, what steps could it take to more effectively manage them?
A massive image of Google Corporation’s Baffin Island Penal Facility appears on the screen behind Dr Winslow, as she calmly shuffles index cards on her podium. Across the image in bold lettering is the Corporation’s motto, Don’t Be Evil. Dr Winslow waits a moment, and then continues.
Over the past decade, prison populations have risen precipitously, presenting ever increasing management challenges. The health and security of both inmates and prison staff is always a principal concern.
The image on the screen changes to that of a cell block populated by grim faced prisoners and stern guards. The words Don’t Be Evil no longer dominate the image, but occupy the bottom right hand corner instead.
But the cost-benefit question must never be ignored solely in the interest of protecting lower echelon employees or the criminals they’re paid to guard. It may be incorrect to say in some circles, but profit and share holder satisfaction must be our two primary goals.
Now the image on screen is a bar graph indicating profits generated by the Convict Personality Erasure Project, or CPEP, increasing over the past eight quarters. Dr Winslow pauses a moment for her audience to appreciate the figures. There is a delighted but dignified murmur from the audience. Dr Winslow continues.
The previously state run prison system failed for two reasons. First, politicians, with little or no understanding of the role of the prison or judicial systems, and with little or nothing to offer voters, planked their platforms with tough-on-crime promises. And when elected, to fulfill their promises, they criminalised an ever-increasing range of human behaviour and activities, while imposing a staggering array of mandatory minimum sentences, thereby eliminating the concept of natural justice and the flexibility for which the western judicial system was known. As a result, prison populations soared and conventional prisons became impossible to fund.
The screen image changes to a long list of recently legislated criminal offences.
The second reason for the failure of the state run prison system was that the same politicians I have already mentioned gave in to, and conspired with, private enterprise to create, what is fondly referred to by detractors, as the prison industrial complex, while still attempting to enforce state control. This created massive conflicts of interest within the system, and domed it. In the end, this proved that governments lacked the fiscal discipline to run efficient operations, a discipline that only the private sector can deliver.
The image now changes to a prisoner strapped into a chair, wearing an opaque pair of goggles and a pair of headphones. Though his eyes are masked, he is obviously grimissing in pain and his fists are tightly clenched. Once again, the words Don’t Be Evil are large across the screen.
The personality erasure procedure takes place in a safe, controlled environment using the apparatus you see the convict behind me wearing. Multiple subjects can be processed at once.
As we are all aware, Google began with a mission to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. But other opportunities to expand on this mission soon presented themselves, in the area of communications, other technologies and logistics.
Now that the nation’s prison system has been handed over to Google, via its subsidiary Google Enterprise, the Corporation has sought to harmoniously dovetail technology and prison reform, thereby further broadening opportunities in research and development to refine behaviour modification technologies and techniques.
Old prison models such as token economies, where daily attendance at educational programs resulted in rewards such as small amounts of money, toiletries, extra internet time or some other benefit, were intended to encourage good behaviour. They were meant to provide direct material rewards for good behaviour, but failed by creating grey and black markets within prisons, and classes of haves and have-nots, resulting in court challenges, and animosities amongst the prison population, leading to further violence.
Although severe punishments, such as extended solitary confinement, sleep deprivation, stress positioning, sexual humiliation, mild to severe non-injurious physical contact and even death, remain necessary in certain circumstances, the new emphasis for Google Enterprise will be to eliminate the need for these primitive forms of punishment, and reduce costs, by creating a docile and easily managed prison population, eradicating prison violence and recidivism. Government can continue its trend toward criminalising every aspect of human existence, and increasing prison populations, and Google will be there to reap the profits.
The image on the screen now changes to a prisoner, presumably the same one that was in the previous slide, now no longer wearing the opaque goggles or headphones, sitting strapped into the same chair, in a catatonic state. The words Don’t Be Evil continue to dominate the screen. Dr Winslow pauses for a moment and looks out onto the audience.
It is true that personality erasure has its critics, who consider the premature cognitive ageing, permanent flat affect, neurogenic motor immobility and behavioural abnormalities manifested by the destruction of the ego as negatives. But the procedure has been proven humane and highly effective in creating Pro-social behaviour in inmates and mental patients, as defined in the 2025 UN – Google Corporation Personality Erasure Charter. And CPEP is a demonstration of Google Corporation’s enduring commitment to compassion, integrity and justice.
Image changes now to a vast, open yard of catatonic individuals, wearing identical striped beige uniforms. The words Don’t Be Evil have once again returned to the right hand corner of the slide.
Integration of Convict Personality Erasure Project subjects into the community after release from prison has an 80% success rate, with a 14% rate of severe, untreatable psychosis, a 4% death rate and a recidivism rate of 1.5%. The remaining .5% of subjects succumb to other unspecified outcomes. Upon release, a subject is no longer the responsibility of the Corporation and no longer represents a liability burden. They are housed and monitored in the community in mass state-run dormitories, staffed by medical personnel, including psychiatrists specialising in personality erasure. Though post-erasure subjects are very low functioning, with intellects in the range of six to twelve years old, resulting from the procedure, they live full and satisfying lives under state care and do not re-offend.
The screen image now changes to a slowly spinning globe with Google, unmoving, suspended in its atmosphere. Beneath it, once again, is the motto Don’t Be Evil.
The privatisation of the state run prison system, and the effectiveness of the Convict Personality Erasure Project, represent a model for the rationalisation of traditional worldwide state run operations, and proves that no service or program, now run by the state, cannot be successfully privatised, resulting in greater profitability and efficiencies. Indeed, this model is representative of libertarian/technocratic exceptionalism in a world weary of the failings of the long-established, fatally liberal, system of democracy.
Though Google began as nothing more than a simple internet search engine, our drive to diversify and innovate has now brought us to a place of maximum profitability, tapping one of the greatest sources of potential corporate revenue. The bulk of federally collected tax revenue, once thought the sacred property of the nation state, is now fully accessible by whichever private entity has the wherewithal to reach out and take it. Ladies and gentlemen, I submit to you that Google is that entity.
Good night, and don’t be evil.