Google starts backing off from China, US Senator says

FILE A Google Home Hub is displayed in New York

FILE A Google Home Hub is displayed in New York

"Billionaire Peter Thiel believes that Google should be investigated for treason".

He reportedly said he thought the CIA and the FBI should investigate Google's ties to China after the company's reported plans to operate a search engine there again, plus Google letting lapse an artificial-intelligence contract with the Pentagon after its employees raised ethical concerns.

Thiel didn't give any evidence about Google's service to the Chinese military, but he drew the conclusion from the assumption that every business in China is more or less controlled by the government, and therefore Google's decision to operate in China automatically makes it a partner of the authoritarian state. Google denied the allegations calling them "wholly inaccurate speculation".

Google last summer pledged that it would not use AI in ways that could be considered unethical, declining to renew a contract with the USA military to use its AI technology to analyze drone footage.

The latter project raised a severe level of contention too after it was discovered that Google was hiding a lot of details surrounding the search engine from its own employees and actively attempting to silence dissidence against the project.

Thiel's comments were taken note of by POTUS Donald Trump, who brought them up on Tuesday pledging to scrutinise Google.

In a rare television interview, Thiel said Monday night that Warren, a MA senator, was the only Democrat talking about important issues like the economy.

Google has faced a great deal of criticism for Project Dragonfly, with critics unhappy that the company seemed willing to bow to the censorship demands of the Chinese government in a bid to break into the market. Google's defense of the company's continued operation in the USA and with US companies stems from the fact that Huawei is a global leader in Android handsets.

Earlier this year, he criticized the tech giant for withdrawing from the bidding from a large Pentagon computing contract but later softened his tone after meeting Google chief executive Sundar Pichai.

The president repeated accusations made previously by Peter Thiel, a co-founder of PayPal and venture capitalist, that Google may be infiltrated by Chinese intelligence agents.

Mac suggested that Thiel's comments and his decision to appear on Tucker Carlson Tonight was a clear indicator that the tech titan is trying to send signals to Trump.

Thiel went on to rip Google for its relationship with the Chinese government. Thiel's support provided Trump with some form of credit in his election campaign in 2016 in Silicon Valley, where numerous major tech companies are located.

In 2018, Google chose to withdraw from a contract between the tech superpower and the U.S. Department of Defense for the development of artificial intelligence (AI) technology citing that the projects have specific ethical issues that they can not be involved in.

Thiel also discussed his fears of Elizabeth Warren as a presidential candidate, saying she was the "most dangerous" of the bunch because "She's the only one that is talking about the economy". He said that a program Google reportedly was working on to create a search engine that would be allowed to operate in China had been shut down.

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