Why Googling the word 'idiot' brings up pictures of Donald Trump

CEO Sundar Pichai says Google has 'checks and balances' against bias

Pichai's answer appeared to please Lofgren. Here's a breakdown of the key takeaways from today's hearing.

Pichai, a 15-year veteran of Google, tried his best to reassure the committee that the company was not biased and was seeking to improve privacy controls for users and security for the country.

The safety of that data - both at the hands of hackers and governments - has become a heated discussion for the entire tech industry.

"We don't manually intervene on any search", Pichai told Lofgren. "It's a well thought out crafted piece of legislation..."

That will do little to calm rumours that at one point, Google had hundreds of people prepping for launch.

Chief Executive Sundar Pichai told a USA congressional panel Google had over 100 people working on the project at one point.

Pichai said "Not by default".

"So it looks like you are overly using conservative news organizations on your news", Cohen said. "Those who write the algorithms get the results they must want and apparently management allows it", said Rep. Lamar Smith, a Republican from Texas. "I think humans can manipulate the process".

Pichai strongly denied claims by President Donald Trump and his backers earlier this year that Google operates with a political agenda that suppresses conservative voices. "Somebody out there is doing something that just isn't working, if you're looking for unbiased results", said Rep. Steve Chabot (R-Ohio).

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Trump and some lawmakers have raised the possibility of asking regulators to investigate whether Google -which handles almost two of every three online searches in the US - has abused its clout as a major gateway to the internet to stifle competition. Despite the headcount, Pichai called it a "limited effort" within the company. "And we take the keyword and match it against their pages and rank them based on over 200 signals - things like relevance, freshness, popularity, how other people are using it", Pichai explained.

Politicians and hundreds of Google employees have raised concerns that Google would comply with China's internet censorship and surveillance policies if it re-enters the Chinese search engine market.

"The First Amendment limits what the government can do on regulating speech, it does not limit Google", Lieu said.

"You bet on the wrong country, Sundar!' Jones said, calling the company "absolutely the most evil corporation on Earth".

The tech giant now "has no plans to launch in China", Pichai told Rep. Sheila Jackson (D-TX) in response to her question about the company's Chinese ambitions.

Bolstering the dominance of its search engine, Google's Android operating system runs most of the world's smartphones, and its other services - including Gmail, YouTube, online ads and the Chrome web browser - are widely used.

"Right now, there are no plans to launch in China", Pichai said, indicating that the program has ended.

Pichai declined to specify how long Google has worked on Project Dragonfly or who has been leading it, but the effort has involved over 100 employees, he said.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai confirmed during congressional testimony on Tuesday that while the company had "no plans" to launch in China, a prototype had been developed, raising red flags among lawmakers. But Pichai evaded the question.

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