Google employees sign protest letter over China search engine NYT

Google Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai says the company is committed to transparency

Google Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai says the company is committed to transparency

Meanwhile, Pichai has made repeated trips to China to discuss the project with some of the country's top Communist leaders.

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"We urgently need more transparency, a seat at the table, and a commitment to clear and open processes: Google employees need to know what we're building", the letter said.

Google withdrew its search engine from China eight years ago due to censorship and hacking. It is possible that they may have come up with better rules with the Chinese government on the new search engine.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai confirmed the existence of the operation, known internally as Project Dragonfly, at an all-hands meeting with employees on Thursday.

In April 2017, Google responded to intensifying pressure from the USA political establishment and intelligence agencies by implementing a censorship system in the United States targeting principally left-wing, anti-war and socialist organizations.

It appears, for the time being, Google is continuing work on its future products for the Chinese market.

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"We'll definitely be transparent as we get closer to actually having a plan of record here". That's assuming relations between the United States and China don't deteriorate further; the escalating trade war has already put delays on both projects.

"Dragonfly was well beyond the "exploratory" stage", Intercept reporter Ryan Gallagher wrote. Primarily, conservative voices are being excluded. And a bipartisan group of six US senators are calling it "deeply troubling". However, it still sounds like the internet giant has big plans across the Pacific. They want an ombudsperson to oversee "urgent moral and ethical issues" raised by the censorship project.

Companies operating in China are required by law to turn over data to security agencies upon request.

The company had also stated that Chinese hackers had tried to hack its servers and steal information from Gmail accounts of human rights activists.

Google Search's update hopes to be able to guess what information users need. Earlier this year, employees protested against Google's involvement in an AI project to improve weapons for the Pentagon. One of these values is: "You can make money without doing evil".

The Times first earlier Thursday that hundreds of employees had signed a letter raising concerns with after they learned through media coverage that the company planned to launch a new project, code-named "Dragonfly", offering search engine services to in compliance with the government's stringent censorship and surveillance requirements.

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