Featured Photo: NDTV
By: Emily Morris Wednesday, November 28
Google has plans to introduce a controversial filtered search engine that is causing uproar from its employees. The search engine, Dragonfly, led Google employees to write an open letter to the company about “human rights”.
If completed Dragonfly would allow the Chinese government to censor their citizens searches and eliminate some websites. Even the available websites would censor certain terms, such as ideas relating to democracy and human rights, according to The Intercept. Along with these restrictions, the Communist government would also have the capability to monitor searches, ensuring no one would slip through the cracks of this system.
In the letter, Google employees said, “Our opposition to Dragonfly is not about China: we object to technologies that aid the powerful in oppressing the vulnerable, wherever they may be…”
The letter continued to discuss the effects of Dragonfly outside of China, as well. Dragonfly would open doors for other countries to make greater requests about search engines.
“Dragonfly in China would establish a dangerous precedent at a volatile political moment, one that would make it harder for Google to deny other countries similar concessions,” added Google employees.
This is not the first time Google has gotten recent attention though. U.S. News reports a bipartisan group of 16 U.S. members of the House of Representatives sent a similar letter to Google’s CEO, Sundar Pichai. Earlier in the this month, Google employees also took a stand against Google’s procedures around sexual misconduct in the workplace by scheduling a walkout. Despite the size of the corporation, Google is not exempt from having to look in the mirror occasionally and analyze.
Thus far, there are still uncertainties surrounding Dragonfly because of the recent backlash weighed with the possibilities of the business venture. The letter has caught the attention of the media and more employees though. A petition has been connected to the letter, encouraging more voices to be introduced to the conflict.
“Google is too powerful to not be held accountable,” said Google employees.