Google tailoring a search engine for China

Google tailoring a search engine for China

Now, according to a report from The Intercept, Google is planning to bring a new version of its search engine to China that will adhere to the country's censorship laws.

The report adds that Google is likely to roll out this censored search engine through a Chinese android app in the next six months, and this search engine would block all things unwanted by the Chinese government: Services already outlawed in China, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Wikipedia, sensitive news such as the Tiananmen Square massacre and Liu Xiaobo, and global media outlets like the BBC and the New York Times.

The news emerged in a piece from The Intercept, which obtained documents about an internal Google project to relaunch a search service in mainland China, complete with government censorship.

Chinese state-owned Securities Times, however, said reports of the return of Google's search engine to China were not true, citing information from "relevant departments".

It's a reversal of its stance from eight years ago, when Google left China in protest of the country's censorship.

Google is set to launch a new version of its eponymous search engine created to conform with China's censorship rules. Now, it appears the fight is over, and Google is giving in with a program codenamed Dragonfly, which includes the two reported apps.

Human rights group Amnesty International is anxious that such a move from Google would set a unsafe precedent for the country. "It is impossible to see how such a move is compatible with Google's "Do the right thing" motto, and we are calling on the company to change course". And it looks like at least one Google employee familiar with the plans related to China is willing to speak up.

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The desktop version of Google's search website is now unavailable to many Internet users within China.

Google employees are already discussing the report, and some comments viewed by Business Insider show many are confused or angry. A final version could be rolled out in six to nine months, depending on when it's approved by Chinese officials, The Intercept reports.

"This has very serious implications not just for China, but for all of us, for freedom of information and internet freedom", Poon said.

In the company's absence, Baidu Inc. has strengthened its grip on search in China while Microsoft Corp.'s Bing operates in the country by censoring subjects and words.

Beijing bans outright criticism of the government and mention of sensitive terms such as the Tiananmen Square massacre.

Google's main search platform is blocked in China along with its video platform YouTube - but it has been trying to make new inroads into China and its rapidly expanding economy.

Most popular internet-based applications and websites are banned in China. Sources indicate that some Google employees have also claimed that the escalating trade war between the US and China means that approval for the finalization of this project won't necessarily be granted. The Intercept reported that such terms would be censored in the planned app.

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