Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/03/19/google_china_possible_april_exit/

Google to flee China on April 10, says report

Announcement on Monday. Apparently

By Cade Metz

Posted in Government, 19th March 2010 10:21 GMT

Google may exit China on April 10, according to a report citing an unidentified sales agent for the company.

The Shanghai-based China Business News also cites a Google China employee saying that the company will announce its Chinese plans on Monday, March 22. This will apparently include information on how it will compensate employees if it does indeed depart the country.

The paper's source for the April 10 date does say that Google itself has yet to confirm it. "We've gotten news saying Google will leave China on April 10, but this piece of news has not yet been confirmed by the Google side," reads the Wall Street Journal's translation of the sales agent's quote.

The report also says that Google China employees are unsure whether the company will simply shutter its search engine or leave the country entirely. Google did not immediately respond to our request for comment.

In mid-January, after alleged Chinese hackers nabbed unspecified intellectual property from its internal systems, Google told the world that it would "no longer" censor search results in China, saying it would enter talks with the government to determine "the basis on which we could operate an unfiltered search engine within the law, if at all".

Earlier in the month, CEO Eric Schmidt said the company had "no timetable" for the talks, but he also said that "something will happen soon". Whatever happens in the end, Google has succeeded in fooling the world into paying relatively little attention to the fact that its internal infrastructure was successfully hacked. ®

Update

Google has responded to say: "We're not commenting on the rumour."