Google says China is important to explore -- even if it means censorship
We've been hearing that Google has been working on a project called Dragonfly which is a search engine which would be able to work with the Chinese rules of censorship.
Now, I've spent a lot of time on my book writing about Google's experience in China previously.
And it had a search engine that worked, or attempted to work, within those boundaries.
Super controversial inside the company.
Eventually the company pulled out.
Why consider that again, why go back in, and what's the status of Dragonfly?
I mean Steven you wrote a lot about it for those few who weren't familiar in 2006 Google went into China, we served search and then in 2010 we stopped serving search in China, but we didn't exit the country we have engineers and over the past few years we've hired more people Android is obviously a very popular operating system there.
And we support small, medium businesses there, in terms of them exporting their products, etc.
So, we are in the market.
It's been eight years.
Every time we are in a country, we are [UNKNOWN] by, our mission is to provide information to everyone.
And it's 20% of the world's population.
It does weigh heavily on us.
Anytime you do, you know, work in countries across the world it's probably, people don't understand it fully but we're always balancing a set of values.
We are, you know, providing users access to information, freedom of expression, user privacy- But we also follow the rule of law in every country we do.
Obviously, when it comes to China, given our history, it's a more bated topic.
Our intent was, the reason they did the internal project was to complete.
It's been many years we've been out of the market.
It's a wonderful, innovative market He wanted to learn what it would look like if Google were in China.
So that's what we built internally.
If Google were to operate in China, what would it look like?
What queries will we be able to serve?
It turns out we'll be able to serve well over 99% of the queries.
And there are many, many areas where we would provide information better than.
When people take cancer treatments, today people either get fake cancer treatments or they actually get useful information.
So things like that weigh heavily on us, but we want to balance it with what the conditions will be.
So it's very early.
We don't know whether we would or could do this in China.
But they felt it was important for us to explore.
You know, I take a long term view on this and, you know, I think it's important for us given how important the market is and how many users there are.
You know, we feel blessed to think hard about this problem and take a long term view.
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