Google CEO meets with Trump to debate relationship with China


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Google CEO Sundar Pichai met with President Donald Trump on Wednesday.

James Martin/CNET

President Donald Trump on Wednesday mentioned he met with Google CEO Sundar Pichai.

The president mentioned in a tweet that Pichai advised him the search big is “totally committed to the US military,” as Google faces criticism over its work in China. Trump additionally mentioned the 2 discussed “political fairness,” including that the assembly “ended very well.” (The president misstated Pichai’s position at Google as the corporate’s president. He’s the CEO.)

A Google spokeswoman confirmed the assembly. “We were pleased to have productive conversations with the president about investing in the future of the American workforce, the growth of emerging technologies and our ongoing commitment to working with the US government,” she mentioned in a press release. 

The White House did not reply to a request for remark.

Google has confronted blowback over its initiatives in China. General Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, mentioned earlier this month that the search big’s work within the nation is “indirectly benefiting the Chinese military.” Pichai was additionally scheduled to fulfill with Dunford on Wednesday, in keeping with a report by Bloomberg. 

Since 2017, Google has had a man-made intelligence lab in Beijing. The firm has additionally been beneath fireplace for a venture known as Dragonfly, reportedly an try and deliver Google search again to China, after the corporate left the market in 2010. At the time of the departure, Google co-founder Sergey Brin cited the “totalitarianism” of Chinese insurance policies. Pichai has mentioned the work is “exploratory,” and that Google has “no plans” to launch a search product in China.

Meanwhile, Google final summer time determined to not renew a contract with the Pentagon for Project Maven, an initiative to make use of AI to enhance the evaluation of drone footage. The determination, which reportedly grated on US army officers, got here after protests from Google employees that mentioned the corporate mustn’t use its know-how for warfare. Last June, quickly after Pichai mentioned the contract wouldn’t be renewed, he launched a set of moral tips for the way the corporate would develop AI. Those tips embrace vows to by no means develop AI for weaponry and to solely create applied sciences which can be “socially beneficial.” 

On Wednesday, Trump additionally urged that he and Pichai mentioned allegations of political bias that conservatives have lodged at Google. Last August, Trump had a really completely different tone when he tweeted concerning the search big. He complained that Google was suppressing his message by not selling his State of the Union speech (which turned out to be unfaithful). He additionally mentioned that search outcomes for information related to him was “rigged.” 

He later told reporters, “I think Google has really taken advantage of a lot of people.”