Slip-Sliding Away: Max Levchin Leaving Google As Social Priorities Change


Credit: Getty Images/Andreas Rentz

Google’s social reinvention under CEO Larry Page has claimed another victim. Slide founder Max Levchin is leaving the company after Google (NSDQ: GOOG) decided to chop most of the products under his domain as it consolidates its social-media strategy around Google+.

AllThingsD reported Thursday that Levchin’s departure accompanies the closing of multiple social applications developed by Slide before and after its acquisition by Google last year. Slide confirmed on its blog that apps like Slideshow and SuperPoke Pets were shutting down and said it would provide ways for users to export their data from the apps.

Slide’s apps weren’t particularly popular, but Google’s real intention behind paying over $200 million for Slide was to get Levchin–one of the founders of PayPal and a director at Yelp–on board. As noted in the report, however, Google has finally hit its social jackpot this year with the launch of Google+ and the Slide projects are not a part of that effort. Page has also brought a new level of focus to Google since taking over as CEO, paring down the company’s famously wide-ranging efforts to dedicate its engineers toward projects with a better chance of paying off in the long run.


Kerry Fields Wolf

You would be surprised at how many people had left the game long before the closure was announced.  There were no longer anywhere near the number of people playing once Google bought Slide–numbers dropped until the game just flatlined. 

Chris Darrington

Google’s rash decision to close the hugely popular Superpoke Pets within 6 months will not help gain users for Google+.As a result many people are boycotting all Google products. There were at one point, many millions of daily users, no doubt they would come flooding back, if Google put Superpoke Pets onto it’s own platform and made the effort to publicise it. Superpoke Pets is the only truly family friendly game on the web with members of all ages and income groups.There are high flying workers who use the site to relax and make friends, also many people with large disposable income who love buying gold. People have spent thousands of dollars per pet over the last three years. It seems crazy to close down a successful game that is already set up and working.So many housebound people play too, from seniors to war veterans. Terminally ill and disabled people enjoy the game. So do people with a variety of health issues, emotional and physical. What alternative is there for them?. They don’t want fast moving teenage style games. Superpoke members love the creative and social aspects most of all.Google are missing out on a really big opportunity to get people to use Google+ instead of Facebook. I suggest Google have a rethink on this matter. They should also consider the morality of depriving people of the gold items they bought, after being told the game would keep running. It was stated many times that Superpoke Pets would not be going away.

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