theodp writes "In June 2009, Google welcomed James Whittaker as its newest Test Director. In February 2012, Whittaker rejoined Microsoft. On Tuesday, Whittaker explained why he left Google: 'The Google I was passionate about,' Whittaker writes, 'was a technology company that empowered its employees to innovate. The Google I left was an advertising company with a single corporate-mandated focus ...The old Google was a great place to work. The new one? -1.' Welcome to the real world, quips CNET's Charles Cooper in response to Whittaker's still-awesome-even-if-a-tad-naive rant."
More from from his post: "It turns out that there was one place where the Google innovation machine faltered and that one place mattered a lot: competing with Facebook ... Google could still put ads in front of more people than Facebook, but Facebook knows so much more about those people. Advertisers and publishers cherish this kind of personal information ... Larry Page himself assumed command to right this wrong. Social became state-owned, a corporate mandate called Google+. It was an ominous name invoking the feeling that Google alone wasn't enough."