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Leak reveals Google's Chinese search engine is months away from launch

By midian182 · 9 replies
Oct 10, 2018
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  1. Google’s head of search, Ben Gomes, told the BBC that the search engine was at the “exploration” stage, and there were no “plans to launch something.” CEO Sundar Pichai has been just as vague, claiming Google was “exploring many options” and “not close” to launching a search product in China—statements echoed by Google’s chief privacy officer, Kieth Enright. But, as reported by The Intercept, a leaked transcript from a meeting between Gomes and Google staff last month reveals Project Dragonfly to be deep into development.

    The search engine blocks links to sites that focus on democracy, religion, human rights, and protests, as well as social networks and western news sources. Speaking to those working on Project Dragonfly, Gomes said, “While we are saying it’s going to be six and nine months [to launch], the world is a very dynamic place.” He added that people in China were missing out on Google. "It's clearly the biggest opportunity to serve more people that we have," he told staff.

    In the meeting, which took place on July 18, Gomes acknowledged the controversy surrounding the project. “We are working with you to make sure your careers are not affected by this,” he assured employees.

    It's been reported that a Dragonfly prototype linked users’ searches to their personal phone numbers, allowing China’s government to monitor its citizens’ queries.

    At least five Google employees have quit over the project, and 1400 workers have signed a letter demanding more information. Last week saw Vice President Mike Pence criticize the company, warning that the search engine would “strengthen Communist Party censorship and compromise the privacy of Chinese customers.” One has to wonder whether the millions of new Chinese customers are worth the PR hammering Google is taking for Project Dragonfly.

    Permalink to story.

  2. EClyde

    EClyde TS Evangelist Posts: 1,810   +668

    This is the Google leak that counts and should be reported on


    Exclusive: Breitbart News Publishes 85-Page Leaked Google Briefing

    Masters of the Universe Admit Abandonment of Free Speech for ‘Safety And Civility’
  3. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 3,156   +1,411

    Google is in the business of making money, and China is HUGE. If they can get Google Search into China they'll make a killing. I don't know how many people in China use the internet regularly, but I'd bet its more than the US and Europe put together.

    Also - don't assume the alternative to a censored Google in China is a China without censorship. The people in China would be censored with or without Google.

    However - if Google is going to help China censor and monitor their people then I sure don't want to hear about what a good wholesome company they are. They throw more money at left-leaning political candidates than anyone else anywhere. It's scary enough knowing that the company with the most influence in Washington is the same company that has access to my entire digital life via Chrome and Android. Now we're learning they only care about freedom when it doesn't get in the way of profits.
    EClyde and senketsu like this.
  4. FliGuyRyan

    FliGuyRyan TS Enthusiast Posts: 43   +19

    Exactly... EClyde, I applause your journalism. Why isn't this being talked about? This presents the stronger precedent that could/would deal long-term lasting blows to our freedom.
    EClyde likes this.
  5. treetops

    treetops TS Evangelist Posts: 2,516   +522

    Sorry but both sides are for sale and they play to win.

    2018 PAC Contribution Data
    Contributions from this PAC to federal candidates (list recipients)
    (51% to Democrats, 48% to Republicans) $754,322
    Contributions to this PAC from individual donors of $200 or more ( list donors)

    Godel likes this.
  6. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 3,156   +1,411

    that's 2018 house and senate contributions. Look at the 2016 presidential contributions. https://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/toprecips.php?id=D000067823&cycle=2016
    Hillary got $1.6 million. Trump got $21,000.

    Look at who the employees donated to..

    Even if this was reversed... my point is the same. Do you want a company with so much control having so much political influence? The reason most of this country believes Net Neutrality is something they want is because of Google's political influence to protect themselves from getting charged for it's extreme YouTube bandwidth.

    I prefer choices and competition. Whenever single entities get too big and too powerful then the little people (us) lose our power. We can't vote with our dollars and time when there's only one product. I don't mind big companies, I just prefer there to be more than one so they compete for our attention.
  7. Danny101

    Danny101 TS Guru Posts: 739   +284

    Google censors in the U.S., so doing it in China is a natural evolution of Google. What Google learns to do in China will most certainly be applied here. I'm taking steps to remove Google products from use. A mobile hotspot, a flip phone, and a Windows tablet. Microsoft is a step above Google, but not by much. The next step will be a Linux tablet, once that challenge is worked out. I will not support censorship and spying to the extent that I can avoid it. Starve the beasts as they say.
  8. treetops

    treetops TS Evangelist Posts: 2,516   +522

    Maybe they were looking to get their way through the left side, all the polls thought she was gonna win. Maybe your right, it would not benefit anyone but big money ISP to end net neutrality and it would definitely cause less people to watch youtube if ISP charged you extra to stream youtube or charged youtube which may result in more ads, slower speeds loading videos or a monthly payment from it's users to offset the costs.

    Without net neutrality, ISP can demand money from any web service and slow them down to any speed they want if they don't pay. Or just slow them down and not even ask for money. If a ISP did not like Fox news, they could slow its site down for it's users to a unusable level. They could turn your internet into something that resembles China.

    I don't like lobbying or campaign contributions. There should be a limit to campaign contr and no lobbying. Maybe 5,000 per person and no contributions from companies.

    As far as employees, that is their choice. Just like NRA employees or big oil employees.


    Net neutrality is the principle that Internet service providers treat all data on the Internet equally, and not discriminate or charge differently by user, content, website, platform, application, type of attached equipment, or method of communication.[4] For instance, under these principles, internet service providers are unable to intentionally block, slow down or charge money for specific websites and online content. This is sometimes enforced through government mandate. These regulations can be referred to as "common carrier" regulations.[5] This does not block all abilities that Internet service providers have to impact their customer's services. Opt-in/opt-out services exist on the end user side, and filtering can be done on a local basis, as in the filtration of sensitive material for minors.[6] Net neutrality regulations exist only to protect against misuse.[5]"

    "A widely cited example of a violation of net neutrality principles was the Internet service provider Comcast's secret slowing ("throttling") of uploads from peer-to-peer file sharing (P2P) applications by using forged packets.[11] Comcast did not stop blocking these protocols, like BitTorrent, until the Federal Communications Commission ordered them to stop.[12] In another minor example, the Madison River Communications company was fined US$15,000 by the FCC, in 2004, for restricting their customers' access to Vonage, which was rivaling their own services.[13] AT&T was also caught limiting access to FaceTime, so only those users who paid for AT&T's new shared data plans could access the application.[14] In July 2017, Verizon Wireless was accused of throttling after users noticed that videos played on Netflix and YouTube were slower than usual, though Verizon commented that it was conducting "network testing" and that net neutrality rules permit "reasonable network management practices".[15] A September 2018 report from Northeastern University and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst found that U.S. telecom companies are indeed slowing internet traffic to and from those two sites in particular along with other popular apps.[16]"

    P.S. If you think google is biased don't use it. I don't go to Fox or Msnbc because I think they are biased. Companies have been taking political stances for a while. Chick fil a said they didn't like gay people. Nike endorsed Kap. The Home Depo cofounder spoke out against dems. The list goes on and on. If half the country stopped using google it would take away a lot of their power.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  9. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 3,156   +1,411

    I'm not chasing that NN stick off the porch - the definition was not in question. Google is the reason we even know the term. Go look up the history of how/why they tried to regulate the internet as a utility.

    Yes, we can choose... sort of. The owner of Penzy's spices said all Republicans are racist. Starbucks wouldn't serve Trump voters if they could pick them out when they walked in. (The CEO of Chick-fil-a only said he thought marriage was between a man and a woman - he didn't say he didn't like gays.)

    But see the problem? Don't like Chick-fil-a, you have 30 other choices. If you don't want to support Google what do you use to search, Bing?! Should I not email anyone with a gmail account?

    Google is a monopoly.
  10. treetops

    treetops TS Evangelist Posts: 2,516   +522

    So you could say, you want to regulate google like a utility, kind of like net neutrality?

    Monopolies are illegal in the USA. There are plenty of other search providers\ email clients. I guess I will just agree to disagree with you on this, but I would think if they were doing something illegal action would be taken. Being the most profitable does not make you the monopoly.

    "Go look up the history of how/why they tried to regulate the internet as a utility."
    Enlighten me. I posted why Wikipedia says they enforced it, if there is more to it lemme know. I am not afraid to learn something new or be wrong.

    p.s. Off topic but Starbucks fiasco, if someone is not buying anything I don't see a problem with asking them to leave. As far as their politics I really only have opinions, I don't know, I think they just want to make money at the end of the day and have no political "side". It is kind of crazy that possible racism has become a right vs left issue....
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2018

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