China responds to Google's move to stop censorship

By Matthew ยท 31 replies
Jan 14, 2010
  1. In a response to Google's motion to end Web censorship, China's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said the country welcomes global Internet companies -- as long as they obey Chinese law. "The Chinese government administers the Internet according to law and we have explicit stipulations over what content can be spread on the Internet," said Yu.

    Read the whole story
  2. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Posts: 5,734   +8

    Matthew you are right, it is the definition of doublethink. "We have explicit stipulations over what content can be spread on the Internet." "China's Internet is open, and the Chinese government encourages development of the Internet."

    Its saying one thing and saying another and believing both at the same time. And China's internet is far, far from open. Unless you are a Chinese hacker of course, then it seems you get to connect to and mess with whatever the hell you want.
  3. treeski

    treeski TS Evangelist Posts: 990   +233

    Yahoo! has stated that it is backing Google in the matter. So I wonder what this all will mean for Yahoo!, if Google really does pull out.
  4. dummybait

    dummybait TS Rookie Posts: 45

    When in doubt....pull out!
  5. Censorship will come to our individual countries in due time.

    Google is cooperating with the Indian government to block objectionable content and what about Australia's recent call to censorship on the internet? What will be Google's response? Build more filters to help the Australian government like they did in China with other search engines?

    Google is not clean by any means in this matter for censorship on the net.
  6. More Google hypocrisy:

    The Slippery Slope Of Internet Censorship In India
    from the and-how-companies-have-to-deal-with-it dept

    Slashdot points us to a WSJ article that focuses on how Google is dealing with censorship laws in India, by taking down certain content and complying with local laws. While it is disappointing that Google appears to be willing to simply accept, rather than question, some of those laws, the bigger issue may be with the laws themselves. As the WSJ details:

    The nation of 1.2 billion is the world's largest democracy and in principle affords free speech to its citizens. But the country has a volatile mix of religious, ethnic and caste politics and a history of mob violence. So, the government has the authority to curtail speech rights in certain cases. India's Constitution encapsulates that gray zone: Free speech is subject to "reasonable restrictions" for such purposes as maintaining "public order, decency or morality."

    Authorities say Internet companies in India, including Yahoo Inc., Facebook Inc. and Twitter, are expected to help government enforce those standards online by removing objectionable material and, occasionally, helping to track down users. Under a law that took effect in October, corporate officials from any Web site that fails to comply with requests to take down material or block sites can face a fine and a jail sentence of up to seven years.

    But how is a site like Google to know when speech is "objectionable" or when it's just "disliked by someone in power"? That's why "reasonable restrictions" on free speech often present a pretty dangerous slippery slope. It's hard to blame Google for this, however. It's likely that most internet companies in India are complying with the law. The real question should be whether or not the law itself makes sense.
  7. Wendig0

    Wendig0 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,136   +131

    Most of the Asian countries (Korea, China, India, Indonesia) have strict censorship laws. Indonesia for example (and I'm using them because I used to live there) has an anti-pornography law, not just for the internet, but any porn (pictures, videos, magazines) even if it is merely a photo found on your cell phone. It carries a fine of up to $220,000 (2 Billion Rupiah) and/or jail for up to 12 years.

    Google's threat to pull out of China means nothing to the Chinese government. Google is just going to have to say goodbye and walk away.
  8. Google's insistence on internet freedom over profit is highly respectable. While ethics are a cultural phenomenon, from the "West," it seems to be the right choice to pull out.
  9. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,264

    Have they tightened up since the early 90's ? I and a few friends went on a surfing holiday to Bali. Due to some minor "indiscretions" involving the local horticultural produce, alcohol and ladies of questionable backround, we faced substantial fines (and possible prison sentences) but the local police invariably showed a great willingness to spare the Indonesian judicial system the vast expense of trial and elicited "instant fines" (albeit without receipt) as a matter of course.

    Bintang is dishwater.
  10. LightHeart

    LightHeart TS Rookie Posts: 155

    As the world is shrinking we need to figure out how best to get along. Is it better to work with restrictive or different types of governments or not deal with them at all? I'm sure there is a balance point somewhere however it is tricky to find.
  11. Google is DEFINITELY NOT a highly respectable company when they are clearly working with governments, organizations, and special interest groups to strip away a person's right to have an uncensored internet.
  12. Timonius

    Timonius TS Evangelist Posts: 647   +58

    Either that or an over abundance of useless information/entertainment to cloud the truth.
  13. Most Chinese people use Baidu exclusively and never use google. I live here and use all the time, hopefully that won't be affected.
  14. I don't really know why people seem insistent on going after Google for this. To me it seems that Google are protecting their interests, which happens to be in line with what we believe in, by calling the Chinese government over this bullshit. Shouldn't we be supporting Google for going against net censorship in China?

    To me in seems like oppressive governments should be targeted not Google.
  15. Chinese regime = oppressive juvenile joke. They'e got their heart where their butt is and the brains of a retarded dog. Likely from eating them for so many years.

    Google = company making real and brave efforts to be responsible to the betterment of mankind. Bravo!!!!
  16. To the guest that wrote this:

    "I don't really know why people seem insistent on going after Google for this. To me it seems that Google are protecting their interests, which happens to be in line with what we believe in, by calling the Chinese government over this bullshit. Shouldn't we be supporting Google for going against net censorship in China?

    To me in seems like oppressive governments should be targeted not Google."

    Two wrongs do not make a right.

    Google is still censoring in other countries whether the citizens want it or not.
  17. Betterment of mankind?

    When internet is censored in your area with Google's assistance, would you say the same?
  18. johnsonlam

    johnsonlam TS Rookie

    Anyone who trust the Chinese Communist (now they OWN the government) is an *****, it even ignore it's own law (people have the right to gather, protest or speech of freedom).
  19. It's not Google's fault and they should not be blamed in this matter. Google was forced to comply with the Chinese government's oppressive laws to operate there. I wish more foreign companies have balls to stop dealing with these communist governmental bastards.
  20. Wendig0

    Wendig0 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,136   +131

    Bali has actually lightened up alot. The governor of Bali refuses to enforce the anti-pornography law, yet from what I understand, the rest of Indonesia still enforces it. I lived in Bali for a long time, yet before that I lived and worked in Jakarta.

    (I drank plenty of Bintang while I was there, and the best I can compare it to is watered down Coors. Eventually it grew on me though because of the price.)
  21. slh28

    slh28 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,706   +172

    Watered down Coors?? So that's like purified water or something then haha
  22. I agree, but let's not loose the focus: Do you really think Google would go so far and pull out of China if serious profit would be on stake?

    Hey, where are all those highly paid managers, CEO's etc? How long does it take for you to finally get it: as soon as you move with your business into China you are screwed!
    Why do you cry after years that your business lost at home because the chinese manufacture cheaper, why do you complain about chinese staeling technology and copy from you as much as they can?
    Who cares in China about copyrights? All those kind of violations are naturally under chinese government protection as long as it serves the chinese government. Would you chop a tree-branch you are sitting on?

    Nobody has ever asked an american, european or asian company to go to China, it's those highly paid CEO's own greed that brought the problems. But again, who cares? All that we CEO's need to do is to satisfy our shareholders (and get rich ourself as fast as we can - should think about retirement, right?) by whatever means necessary. Even it endangers the business in our home country.

    Ya, it's the name "Google" this time in the spot-light. But the real problem lies much deeper and it's much more dirty: You want to complain about your problems in one of the countries, then do the same in the other countries you have business with (e.g. India etc.) as well!
    Don't measure with different scales!

    And don't forget: The governments (chinese.... indian....etc.) did never force you to bring your business to that country!

    One last point: why are so many american, european, african, asian..... companies looking for chinese investors? Our own govenments and banks just screwed up, failing to provide means to get fresh capital into our own businesses. I'm sure, the chinese government is laughing and applauding because our own governments just opened the doors for further chinese influence in our home countries!

    I'd be glad to see some feedback on my remarks to discuss further!
  23. lol so true
  24. The guest that posted earlier (2 posts above) made an important point, China never asked Google to go in there. It was making money that led the company to deal with the communist regime there. It's important to note that Google-developed technology will still be used to filter the internet there even if they pull out of China.
  25. I see Google is criticized quite a lot for working with governments. Let's not forget that Google is a company, a legal entity, and as any other legal entities it has to obey the law (of the countries where it's doing operations).

    Take you for example, if you are someplace when no one knows you (like a hacker is on the net), you might get away with breaking the law, but if you break the law and the authorities know where to find you (like is the case for Google), then I bet you will obey the laws, too.

    In other words, if anyone of you is so upset with Google working with the Chinese government, try to put yourself in their shoes: go to Beijing and start making waves about the Chinese government. Let's see how you will avoid the legal system.
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