I have to say, I was really surprised at how genuine Elliot Schrage seemed while he was discussing Google's global mission. It seemed like he really felt like Google could become a sort of democratizing machine that brings the power back to the people.
"All of us together have a chance to shift the power base of electoral politics...in order to broaden it, to raise the dialogue, to put a modern spin on government of the people, by the people, for the people."
Truly inspiring words. What was even more impressive was how he justified this credo through some very tough questions about Google's China policy.
After sighting that his background is steeped in human rights, Schrage said, ""I feel very strongly that we made the right decision when it comes to China...The decision ultimately came down to are we going to be able to be more helpful in contributing to the development of free information...by offering services in china, or by not doing so."
It will certainly be interesting to see if Google can truly justify such grand words, because they certainly will be tested in China. We shall see if Google's credo, along with its soul, survives the fight.