"We shouldn’t always equate fun with money.” - Sundar Pichai, 2023

"Going forward, to build a breakthrough Twitter 2.0 and succeed in an increasingly competitive world, we will need to be extremely hardcore. This will mean working long hours at high intensity. Only exceptional performance will constitute a passing grade." - Elon Musk, 2022

Recently laid off by a tech company and wondering what to do with all your corporate swag?

The Center for Ethics, Society, and Computing (ESC) will take your shirts, hats, totes, mugs, etc.

Rather than creating more swag that will eventually end up in landfills, ESC is upcycling tech company swag with its ESC key logo.

Email escapeswag@umich.edu, and we will send you a shipping label or maybe even come pick it up!

The ESC key was added to the computer keyboard to interrupt a program when it produced unwanted results, allowing the system to be critically examined. In the same way, the Center for Ethics, Society, and Computing (ESC – pronounced “escape”) is dedicated to intervening when digital media and computing technologies reproduce inequality, exclusion, corruption, deception, racism, or sexism. ESC is a research center and a collective of scholars committed to feminist, justice-focused, inclusive, and interdisciplinary approaches to computing. We are invested in the social, cultural, and political dimensions of digital technologies. We intercede in structures of power and inequality. We work with educators, workers, industrial practitioners, and policymakers.

"Pichai was asked why the company is 'nickel-and-diming employees' by slashing travel and swag budgets at a time when Google has record profits and huge cash reserves. 'I think it's important that as a company, we pull together to get through moments like this.'" - Sundar Pichai, CNBC, 2023

“People change jobs, and the extra logo makes for an awkward re-gift. People tend not to pass logo’d gear down to their kids, and not everyone wants to be an advertisement on weekends, even if they’re proud to go into work on weekdays. The result? Perfectly good gear ends up forgotten in the closet—or worse, gets tossed in the trash." - Patagonia, 2022

"Could HR please provide a seam-ripper to all departing employees? That'll let us remove your shit logo from our swag!" - Laid off tech employee on Blind, 2023

"I only wore Google swag. Now I have no clothes after being laid off." - Former Google employee on Twitter, 2023