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Eric Schmidt, former CEO of Google, predicts that the Internet will eventually be split into two parts. Last night he spoke at the Village Global VC and came to an interesting conclusion. Within a decade, the Internet would be divided into a Chinese and an American part.

I think the most likely scenario is that we get a Chinese internet and a non-Chinese internet led by America, Schmidt told CNBC. The reason for this is quite easy to explain, because it has to do with the different needs and ways of looking at the technology.

Censored search engine

Google is currently developing Project Dragonfly; a censored version of its search engine that is allowed to operate in China. In this way, Google hopes to keep the Chinese authorities satisfied, who know how to censor the Internet pretty well. Google’s project makes it possible to censor certain terms directly and can therefore also block certain search results completely.

It is a project that causes great controversy, because it goes against the idea of a free and open internet. Yet it is not very strange, because China is already censoring large parts of the Internet. People can’t just surf to all websites and it’s also not possible to search on all conceivable terms.

Implications of globalisation

Globalisation means that [China] is also allowed to decide, Schmidt went on to say. I think your great leadership in the field of products and services from China will be. However, there is a danger that with these products and services, the government will adopt a very different leadership regime, with censorship, control mechanisms and so on.

This is in line with China’s policy towards other countries. It is currently developing the New Silk Road. To this end, China is investing billions in maritime routes and land infrastructure to link China and Asia, Europe and Africa. Schmidt believes that the countries that benefit most from this will be more inclined to use Chinese techniques, even if they have to give up some freedom to do so. The development of two stand-alone internet versions is almost inevitable in this respect, he thinks.

This news article was automatically translated from Dutch to give Techzine.eu a head start. All news articles after September 1, 2019 are written in native English and NOT translated. All our background stories are written in native English as well. For more information read our launch article.