California judge rules Google’s confidentiality agreements break labor law

The Washington Post
January 14, 2022

A California judge ruled this week that the confidentiality agreements Google requires its employees to sign are too broad and break the state’s labor laws, a decision that could make it easier for workers at famously secret Big Tech firms to speak openly about their companies.

A Google employee identified as John Doe argued that the broad nondisclosure agreement the company asked him to sign barred him from speaking about his job to other potential employers, amounting to a noncompete clause, which are illegal in California. In a Thursday ruling in California Superior Court, a judge agreed with the employee, while declining to make a judgment on other allegations that Google’s agreements blocked whistleblowing and sharing information about wages with other workers.