Ex-Googler Claims To Be One Of Five Scientists Who Quit In Protest To Chinese Search Plans
In May, it was reported that Google workers were quitting over Google's involvement with a Pentagon project called Project Maven. Eventually, a petition made the rounds with Google workers demanding that the search giant sever ties with the military project. A new report is making the rounds that
Jack Poulson, identified as a senior Google research scientist in the research and machine intelligence department, quit in protest of Google's plans to launch a censored version of its search engine in China. The Chinese government has notoriously tight control over internet searches within the country to keep its populace from unfettered access to information the government deems inappropriate.
Poulson claims to be one of about five workers who left Google over the censored Chinese search engine project dubbed Dragonfly. Poulson claims that it was his "ethical responsibility to resign" and that his resignation was a "protest of the forfeiture of our public human rights commitments." Dragonfly has allegedly been in the works since 2017 and gathered steam after a meeting between Google CEO Sundar Pichai and an unidentified Chinese official in late 2017. Presumably, the Google workers quitting in protest want the search giant to kill the project.
China is a massively important market for many tech firms. It has one of the largest and fastest growing populations of technology and internet users in the world. Companies want to get into the market as it grows, but government regulations often force these companies to abide by laws that people from other countries find unsavory. Google has made no official comment on the resignations.