Friends reunite at Twitter

Google exodus as legal talent heads for microblogging supersite

Twitter’s lawyers are linking up with old mates as the site continues to pluck legal talent from Google.

The news – naturally announced via Twitter – that Google deputy general counsel Nicole Wong had joined Twitter as legal director last week rammed home the message that Google DNA runs deep at the microblogging site.

Wong, who was Google’s chief censorship star for nearly eight years, wrote on her Twitter page: “New nest. Excited to #jointheflock,” to which Twitter general counsel Alex Macgillivray, who was Google’s associate general counsel of product and IP until 2009, replied: “So excited to be working with Nicole again!”

It must be a familiar feeling in Twitter’s legal department, which is starting to resemble Friends Reunited. Other lawyers to have left the search giant recently for Twitter include associate litigation counsel Amy Keating, European boss Anthony Wang and corporate counsel Bakari Bock, while last week’s appointment of Aliza Knox, ex-managing director of commerce for Google Asia Pacific, marks Twitter’s first-ever pan-Asia executive outside Japan.

If the whispers are true and Twitter is beefing up to go public there could be plenty more where this came from, which means we might be seeing more tweets like: “Google posted a job you may be interested in: Privacy Counsel – Mountain View in California.” Privacy expert Wong posted that one earlier this year, when she is understood to have already left her post at the search engine.