This year is already a challenge for Microsoft Bing. Since Wednesday, the search engine in China seems to be no longer accessible, even if the company has committed to censor the search results.
The Financial Times reported Wednesday that it had spoken to two sources who said Bing was against a policy blocked by the Chinese government. While it's unclear what led to the apparent ban, Chinese state-owned telecommunications company China Unicom may have been asked to push Bing's search engine against censorship reasons, the Financial Times said.
A Microsoft spokesperson emailed Gizmodo, "It has confirmed that Bing is currently unreachable in China and [is] is busy defining the next steps."
Most sources, of which Many of us regularly receive our messages are already blocked in China, including social media titans like Facebook and Twitter. The Financial Times noted that Microsoft was one of the last foreign search tools that was present in the country before Wednesday. Google withdrew its search engine in 2010 – but whether it stays that way is currently a pressing issue.
Bing's apparent blacklisting raises questions about the future of Google's Dragon Dragon project, Verge noted. The polarizing, previously idle project for a censored Chinese search product has outraged both activists and Google employees. More than 700 of them signed an open letter in November calling for the company's leadership to stop any development of the project.  "The Chinese government is certainly not alone in its willingness to suppress freedom of expression and use surveillance to suppress dissent," the letter says. "Dragonfly in China would set a dangerous precedent in a volatile political moment that would make it harder for Google to deny similar concessions to other countries."
Google boss Sundar Pichai, who has even defended a Google censored search engine in China is a better option than having none at all – said during a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee last month that the company was not planning to to bring such product "now" on the market. But his pointed non-response indicated that it was not & # 39; Also completely off the table.
Apart from being blocked in China, it was not a particularly good month for Bing. A few weeks ago, the company was hit by a TechCrunch report, which found that its search engine found child pornography in its results.
[The Verge, Financial Times]