300+ Google Employees Sign Open Letter Against Censored Chinese Search App ‘Project Dragonfly’

Li Xin/AFP/Getty Images
Li Xin/AFP/Getty Images

Over 300 Google employees have signed an open letter calling on the Silicon Valley giant to end development on “Project Dragonfly,” its censored Chinese search engine which has been widely criticized by human rights organizations and elected officials, including Vice President Mike Pence.

The open letter was published on Tuesday after Amnesty International called for Google to stop working on Project Dragonfly, and threatened to organize mass protests against the project at Google offices around the world.

“We are Google employees and we join Amnesty International in calling on Google to cancel project Dragonfly, Google’s effort to create a censored search engine for the Chinese market that enables state surveillance,” declared the Google employee open letter. “We are among thousands of employees who have raised our voices for months. International human rights organizations and investigative reporters have also sounded the alarm, emphasizing serious human rights concerns and repeatedly calling on Google to cancel the project. So far, our leadership’s response has been unsatisfactory.”

The letter continues:

Many of us accepted employment at Google with the company’s values in mind, including its previous position on Chinese censorship and surveillance, and an understanding that Google was a company willing to place its values above its profits. After a year of disappointments including Project Maven, Dragonfly, and Google’s support for abusers, we no longer believe this is the case. This is why we’re taking a stand.

We join with Amnesty International in demanding that Google cancel Dragonfly. We also demand that leadership commit to transparency, clear communication, and real accountability. Google is too powerful not to be held accountable. We deserve to know what we’re building and we deserve a say in these significant decisions.

When Breitbart Tech reported on the open letter, Tuesday, 60 Google employees had signed it.

The letter currently, however, has been signed by over 300 employees, including engineers, managers, designers, administrators, and analysts.

In August, over a dozen human rights organizations urged Google to stop working on Project Dragonfly — expressing concern over potential human rights violations.

Google’s efforts to enter the China market have also been criticized by Vice President Mike Pence. In October, Pence said during a speech, “Google should immediately end development of the ‘Dragonfly’ app that will strengthen Communist Party censorship and compromise the privacy of Chinese customers.”

Charlie Nash is a reporter for Breitbart Tech. You can follow him on Twitter @MrNashington, or like his page at Facebook.

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