Schmidt’s Internet message “well received,” says Richardson
Google Chairman Eric Schmidt’s message on the importance of embracing the Internet was “well received” in Pyongyang, according to Bill Richardson, a former governor of New Mexico.
Richardson, writing in The Washington Post on Friday, invited Schmidt to accompany him on a private trip to North Korea in January. During the trip, the delegation met with senior North Korean officials.
During our visit, Eric Schmidt, the co-leader of our delegation and the executive chairman of Google, spoke about the advantages of adopting the Internet and increased mobile technology. His message was well-received by officials, scientists and students. — “Time for a Reboot with North Korea,” Washington Post, February 1, 2013.
Richardson’s message came with a kicker:
But economic development, access to technology and progress don’t go together with nuclear threats. These threats lead to increased isolation, decreased international aid and freezes in technological progress. — “Time for a Reboot with North Korea,” Washington Post, February 1, 2013.
The editorial spends most of its time dealing with North Korea’s recent threats to test a nuclear weapon and the positive diplomatic steps it could be taking to better relations with its neighbors. Schmidt’s Internet message isn’t mentioned again, but I though it was worth highlighting as it’s one of the few things written about the trip.
The only other information came in a blog post from Schmidt himself and one from his daughter, who also accompanied him on the trip.
Of those two accounts, perhaps the most interesting was Sophie Schmidt’s interpretation that the arrival of wider Internet access in North Korea is inevitable:
They seemed to acknowledge that connectivity is coming, and that they can’t hope to keep it out. Indeed, some seemed to understand that it’s only with connectivity that their country has a snowball’s chance in hell of keeping up with the 21st century. But we’ll have to wait and see what direction they choose to take. — Sophie In Korea, Google Sites, January 2013.
Of course, Internet access doesn’t mean it will necessarily be free and unfiltered. North Korea spends so much time and effort trying to keep foreign information sources from penetrating the country, it’s almost unthinkable that unfettered Internet access would appear anytime soon.
Much more likely is an expansion of the controlled access to areas where the government sees economic benefit: business, academia and transmission of propaganda from the country to the rest of the world.
As for Google, a likely first step would be the hosting of North Korean computer scientists as its campus in California for some sort of training or academic program.
|Print article||This entry was posted by Martyn Williams on February 3, 2013 at 03:33, and is filed under Censorship, Internet. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|
No comments yet.
about 4 months ago - 2 comments
What a difference a week makes. The Christmas Day release of “The Interview” is back on and Sony has already begun offering the movie online. The movie, a comedy in which two TV reporters embark on a secret mission to kill Kim Jong Un, appeared on YouTube and Google Play on December 23 at 1pm ET.…
about 7 months ago - 1 comment
Daum has launched a North Korean mapping service, becoming the first South Korean portal to offer maps of the country’s northern neighbor. The maps are based on data from South Korea’s National Geographic Information Institute (NGII) and, according to local media, provide greater coverage of North Korea than Google Maps. You can check the maps out for…
about 11 months ago - 14 comments
North Korea has strict controls on internal movement, a scarcity of private car ownership and almost no Internet users. And now it’s also got satellite navigation through Google Maps. The service is available through the web and mobile apps and allows users to calculate travel time by car or foot between points of interest in the…
about 1 year ago - 1 comment
The recent addition of North Korea to Google’s Maps service made up a small part of the company’s presentation to developers at its annual conference on Wednesday. Brian McClendon, vice president of Google Maps, spoke about adding data and what it meant during at keynote speech at the Google I/O conference in San Francisco. North…
about 1 year ago - No comments
Google has posted video of Eric Schmidt’s remarks at the recent “Big Tent” event in Washington, D.C. The Google-organized events act as idea summits and have been running for about three years and the D.C. event took place on April 26. During his speech, the chairman of Google talked about North Korea and the impact…
about 2 years ago - 6 comments
Google Chairman Eric Schmidt has said a little bit more about his January trip to Pyongyang. [Updated: see below] The “private, humanitarian” mission, as Schmidt termed it, surprised many and saw him turn up in Pyongyang with his daughter Sophie Schmidt, Jared Cohen, head of the Google Ideas think tank, former New Mexico governor Bill Richardson and Kun “Tony”…
about 2 years ago - 2 comments
Another Uriminzokkiri video has been removed from YouTube for copyright infringement. This time it’s a propaganda video that borrowed its soundtrack from the video game “The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion.” The takedown, confirmed by a message when users attempt to access the clip, comes just two weeks after a previous propaganda video was removed after…
about 2 years ago - 2 comments
Google’s on a bit of a North Korean kick at the moment. Just weeks after its chairman, Eric Schmidt, made a high-profile visit to Pyongyang, the company has added additional detail about the county to Google Maps. Roads, subway stations, parks and some major monuments and buildings are on the new map, which became available…
about 2 years ago - 6 comments
Google Chairman Eric Schmidt has posted some thoughts on his recent trip to Pyongyang. The comments appeared on his Google Plus page on Saturday, the same day his daughter also posted her impressions of the trip. The executive’s comments won’t provide any big revelations, at least they shouldn’t to readers of this blog. He generally…