Author Topic: Google in China  (Read 2494 times)

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Offline Andrew A.

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Offline Ryan

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Re: Google in China
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2010, 06:22:30 AM »
I listened to part of a discussion with a media professor who worked in China for a while yesterday on WPR. While this is a bold move by Google, it apparently isn't making much of a difference to the everyday person in China. Google results may not be censored but the "great firewall" is still blocking the sites. I guess people can see there are things out there but they can't find out what content is there. Of course, they have always known there are things out there but they might get some sense of what is out there.

The "great firewall" seems to be more powerful than I realized. It was pointed out that users who go from a Google result to a restricted site get some message that the site is not allowed, then for a few minutes can't access Google again. They consider this the government's equivalent of a slap on the wrist.

One interesting thing I took from the story. While Google has taken a beating in the public eye for censoring results, largely due to its "don't be evil" mantra, Yahoo and Microsoft have slipped under the radar for much more severe transgressions. Yahoo has actually handed over personal data to the Chinese government, which was then used to convict Chinese dissidents. Off the top of my head, I can't recall what exactly it was that Microsoft had done but I recall at the time thinking that's far more serious than Google censoring results. Of course, Yahoo and Microsoft never claimed a "don't be evil" mantra. Google placed itself under the microscope with that line.