Keeping up with the Googleses

February 8th, 2006 by Ross Scaife

“We already knew that Yahoo! collaborates enthusiastically with the Chinese regime in questions of censorship, and now we know it is a Chinese police informant as well,” Reporters Without Borders said in a statement.
More from John Battelle.

2 Responses to “Keeping up with the Googleses”

  1. Gabriel Bodard Says:

    A real question is to consider what kind of interaction companies like this–and I’m thinking much more of Google than of Yahoo, because they have more interesting, ambiguous policies–should have with regimes who do not respect internet free speech to the degree we should like. Some have argued that it is better for Google to agree to omit certain search results from their engine to comply with Chinese law (for example), especially since they do tell you that something is being omitted here, than to refuse to engage at all so the government censor access to the US version of Google in a much more indiscriminate and uncontrollable way. Is it better to get involved in a limited way, and be open about it, or to leave them in the cold altogether? (And at least Google have made a conscious choice not to offer any services in China that might require them to give up information to the government, unlike Yahoo.)

    It’s a genuine discussion, and I don’t know what the answer is. I’m glad I’m not the one making the decision, ’cause it’s a tough ‘un.

  2. Ross Scaife Says:

    A new survey by the Committee to Protect Journalists calls China’s efforts to control its media “unique in the world’s history.”

    “Never have so many lines of communication in the hands of so many people been met with such obsessive resistance from a central authority.”

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