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Michael Foucault (a celebrated French Philosopher) is credited with the famous quote that claims that “Where there is power there is resistance “ (1978: 95-96). Consequently social scientists have been preoccupied with exploring power and in isolated cases, studied power resistance. One greatly explored form of resistance is everyday resistance, which explores how people act in their everyday lives in ways to undermine power. In this respect, James C. Scott introduced the concept of hidden transcript, the strategy of power resistance that goes on offstage. Hidden transcript is common in different organization including in (NMWM).
According to Scott (**) all the subordinate people employ different strategies of resistance that may sometimes go unnoticed by the superodinate staff due to the differences in the modes of interaction between the dominators and the oppressed. According to Scott, the dominators-oppressed relationships and interactions can be understood into two transcripts; the public and the hidden transcripts. The public transcripts are the public or the open interactions between the subordinates and their dominators, and reflect the normal day-to-day relationships between the oppressed and the dominator. The public transcripts are normally pacified and appear acquiescent, with the oppressed putting on the mask of being contented and happy, pertinent to their relationship with the dominator. The oppressed assume a conventional pattern of speech and stylized public performances, which help them avoid conflicts with the dominators . However, this performance is only skin-deep, and quickly changes when the oppressed leave the realm of onstage.
When the oppressed leave the dangerous realm the intimidating gaze of their dominators, they slip into the realm of offstage, such as their servants’- quarters, they shed-off their masks to express their hidden feelings to colleagues, families and friends. In this realm the oppressed can speak words of revenge, self-assertion, anger merciless lampooning raucous laughing and even bitter criticisms. These they do in the protective care of the offstage, away from the watchful eye of the dominator. As such, the only way to understand the complexity of power relations between the subordinates and their dominators is understanding the hidden transcripts of the powerless that belies their calculated conformity of the everyday life. The importance of understanding hidden transcripts to understand power relations can best be evidenced through the power relations at Google LLC.
Google LLC is a multinational tech-company that specializes in internet-related products and services such as search engines online advertising technologies, cloud computing, computer hardware and software programs. The company is headquartered in Mountain View, California, and was founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1998 who now own fourteen percent of its share, and fifty-six percent voting power, through super-voting stock power. Google began as an online search Engine but now offers diversified interned products and services, as well as mobile phones hardware. This broad product portifolio, as well as its expansive market has made Google one of the most influential companies in the high-tech companies internationally with its pioneer product, Google search , being used to search close to 70% of all internet searches . According to (**), Google LLC has more than eighty-eight thousands full-time employees, and is one of the best employer in terms of remunerations and benefits packages. The company is also credited for maintaining cordial power relationships between the managers and the subordinates, a factor that promotes optimal employee productivity.
In terms of everyday power relations, the subordinates in Google LLC can be viewed as the dominators as they wield the power to decide important employment issues within the company including salaries and employment packages. Conversely, the subordinates can be viewed as the oppressed as their salaries, benefits terms of service and even duties and responsibilities are often decided by the management (dominators). The Google LLC has an excellent public transcript, whereby employees at the company often site a very cordial working relations with the management. They employees boast of the best remuneration and benefits packages, excellent management among other beneficial employees’ considerations that make Google LLC to seem to be the perfect haven for all employees. However this is just the public transcript, a narrative given by the employees when at the watchful eye of the management and where they fear reproach from the latter. And like SPOOON noted this is not the case.
A critical exploration of the hidden transcript of the Google LLC reveal a massive discontentment among some employees pertinent to the employee-employer relationship at the Google LLC.
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