Google’s Privacy Counsel Campaigns Against Ties

    July 25, 2007

Peter Fleischer serves as Google’s global privacy counsel, but he may also have had a role in writing the dress code.  At any rate, the man apparently loathes ties – he wrote a letter to the Financial Times saying as much.

I enjoyed Fleischer’s mini-rant, so here, courtesy of the Times, is the bulk of it:

[A tie] constricts circulation to the brain.  And it acts as decorative camouflage for the business suit, designed to shield the middle-aged male physique, with its shrinking shoulders and protruding paunch, from feeling sufficiently self-conscious to hit the gym.

Men should lose their ‘business attire’ and wear T-shirts to work.  Wouldn’t you like to know whether your business partners are fit?  Why should you trust a man in business if he abuses his own body?  And heaven knows what waves of creativity might be unleashed, when men are freed from conformist garb.”

If your fashion editor can hardly imagine a better garment for men to exhibit their personality, power and masculinity than wearing ties, well . . . I work at Google.  Our unofficial motto is, ‘Be serious without a suit.’

Quite the little outburst, isn’t it?  Yet I’m strongly anti-tie, as well, and within the search community, Fleischer also won Danny Sullivan’s support.  Nicholas Carr, on the other hand, is concerned about the letter’s attitude towards tubby people, and ignores issues of menswear (though you’ll note Carr is tie-less in his Rough Type photo).

Thus far, Google’s gotten involved with philanthropy and politics.  Personal fitness may be a touchy subject, yet as far as I’m concerned, Fleischer is more than welcome to reign over fashion.