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China Pushes Censorship Amidst Google Threat

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 43 comments

China says it's their way or the highway.

This week, headlines were filled with Google's bold statement that it might pull out of China altogether in response to hacker attacks.

"These attacks and the surveillance they have uncovered--combined with attempts over the past year to further limit free speech on the Web--have led us to conclude that we should review the feasibility of our business operations in China," said Google's Chief Legal Officer David Drummond.

"We have decided we are no longer willing to continue censoring our results on Google.cn, and so over the next few weeks we will be discussing with the Chinese government the basis on which we could operate an unfiltered search engine within the law, if at all. We recognize that this may well mean having to shut down Google.cn, and potentially our offices in China," were the telling words from Drummond.

While the threat of the world's most important internet company pulling its operations from within a country is serious, the Chinese officials have yet to even flinch.

According to Bloomberg, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said at a regular briefing in Beijing today that Chinese law prohibits hacking and other forms of online attacks.

Jiang Yu said, "The Chinese government administers the Internet according to law and we have explicit stipulations over what content can be spread on the Internet."

While the Chinese spokeswoman did not directly apply that statement to Google, the message appears clear that if Google is unwilling to play by the country's censorship laws, then the internet giant has no place in China.

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Top Comments
  • 11 Hide
    jblack , January 14, 2010 8:40 PM
    starrymanChina has 6 billion people with growing incomes.


    China has 1.3 billion people. Not 6 billion.
  • 11 Hide
    Anonymous , January 14, 2010 8:17 PM
    People living in the US cry bloody murder whenever the topic of other countries censoring thing is brought up.

    I just want to point out that the US censors also. We decide that child pornography is not ok but adult pornography is. It's a matter of degree what we think is censorship worthy and what is not and there is not necessarily a moral high ground to take.

    I'm sure there are people in the states that would like some more control on the media their children are exposed to and that's very close to censorship.

    China goes too far in this from our point of view but who is to say where we draw the line is the perfect place?
  • 10 Hide
    CoderDunn , January 14, 2010 7:32 PM
    Is anyone really surprised?

    Looks like there is actually a good chance google will abandon china ...

    Of course then china will just release it's own search engine that censors every website that doesn't praise the republic.
Other Comments
  • 6 Hide
    MitchMeister- , January 14, 2010 7:27 PM
    I say screw em. A free open source company like Google has no place in an obviously fascist country that censors and restricts everything. If they don't want Google, why should Google want to stay? (minus the obvious 6 billion clicks...)
  • 10 Hide
    CoderDunn , January 14, 2010 7:32 PM
    Is anyone really surprised?

    Looks like there is actually a good chance google will abandon china ...

    Of course then china will just release it's own search engine that censors every website that doesn't praise the republic.
  • 8 Hide
    Shadow703793 , January 14, 2010 7:37 PM
    Quote:
    Chinese law prohibits hacking and other forms of online attacks.

    O RLY?

    I'm sure the Chinese gov't spends $$$ on training hackers for the Chinese Cyber Army.
  • 1 Hide
    porksmuggler , January 14, 2010 7:37 PM
    It's ok they don't need Google when they have Bi-ying

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/13/opinion/lweb13microsoft.html
    http://arstechnica.com/microsoft/news/2009/11/will-you-boycott-bing.ars
  • 0 Hide
    starryman , January 14, 2010 7:54 PM
    This whole censorship non-sense is just smoke screen. Google cries censorship but China has 6 billion people with growing incomes. BMW launched it's flagship 7 series in China. Rolls Royce sells more cars in China (including Hong Kong) than any other place. It's clear and evident that the Chinese want a cut of the search engine pie and doesn't want Google to conduct business without any kick backs. Bottom line, Google has much more to lose than China. Google "threatening" to leave... ha ha. That's like threatening a super hot chick that you don't want to boink her. In my book Google as of late acts quite communist itself - very controlling and snooping around everyone's gmail and google services. Talk about big brother.
  • 2 Hide
    Upendra09 , January 14, 2010 7:55 PM
    Google can't go ahead with it, it would take a humongous bite into their sales
  • 1 Hide
    Gin Fushicho , January 14, 2010 7:57 PM
    Well , Google should get the hell out of there as fast as they can I say, China sounds pissed. If they were dealing with the North Koreans they wouldn't have a building left by now.
  • 11 Hide
    Anonymous , January 14, 2010 8:17 PM
    People living in the US cry bloody murder whenever the topic of other countries censoring thing is brought up.

    I just want to point out that the US censors also. We decide that child pornography is not ok but adult pornography is. It's a matter of degree what we think is censorship worthy and what is not and there is not necessarily a moral high ground to take.

    I'm sure there are people in the states that would like some more control on the media their children are exposed to and that's very close to censorship.

    China goes too far in this from our point of view but who is to say where we draw the line is the perfect place?
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , January 14, 2010 8:19 PM
    is simple that if you want to deal with the chinese government you have to follow their rule or else go away. why that google keep want to stay in china. if google goes away I bet yahoo will rise.
  • -2 Hide
    trih , January 14, 2010 8:19 PM
    Fuck China! I wish companies would stop producing there to teach the communists a lesson.
  • 0 Hide
    maestintaolius , January 14, 2010 8:20 PM
    I just hope Google cleaned out their China offices of anything important or valuable. I know of two companies in my industry that had equipment that got "lost" (i.e. seized by the gov't). When the Chinese gov't found out that the companies planned to move operations to another country.
  • -6 Hide
    azetec , January 14, 2010 8:34 PM
    Google is upset because China spies Google better than Google spies China.

    If u look better at Google they are nothing more than a spy machine since they scan all the internet sites that's nothing more than spying.
  • 1 Hide
    jincongz , January 14, 2010 8:40 PM
    mitchmeister-I say screw em. A free open source company like Google has no place in an obviously fascist country that censors and restricts everything. If they don't want Google, why should Google want to stay? (minus the obvious 6 billion clicks...)

    Did you just say Fascist? This is how ignorant you are about China, so you shouldn't even be talking.
  • 11 Hide
    jblack , January 14, 2010 8:40 PM
    starrymanChina has 6 billion people with growing incomes.


    China has 1.3 billion people. Not 6 billion.
  • 3 Hide
    frozenlead , January 14, 2010 9:05 PM
    azetecBTW Google is not a search engine it's a spy engine

    You obviously know nothing about search engine technology.

    starrymanBMW launched it's flagship 7 series in China. Rolls Royce sells more cars in China (including Hong Kong) than any other place.


    Buying high-priced items doesn't make someone better than someone else. If ignorance makes you rich, I'd rather be poor.


    setooI just want to point out that the US censors also. We decide that child pornography is not ok but adult pornography is.


    The US is far less censored than other countries (point in case, the article above). Sure, you can't get child porn...but really? Come on. It's child porn for god sakes...that ruins kids' lives - whereas a politically-aligned or intellectual website doesn't. At least US citizens can get get access to whatever political or technical content they want.
  • 1 Hide
    porksmuggler , January 14, 2010 9:52 PM
    Apparently I needed to put /sarcasm on my post above.

    When you have companies like Micro$oft eager to enter the Chinese market, and willing to censor, and Baidu already there complying to the governments every wish, Google has made the best decision.
  • -1 Hide
    twu , January 14, 2010 10:16 PM
    Yeah.. go away and let my Baidu stocks rock.
    Why Google suddenly cares about privacy?
    Wait, Google can invade other people's privacy, steal and sell for $$$ but Google cries when others invade Google.
  • 4 Hide
    frozenlead , January 14, 2010 10:45 PM
    azetec@frozenlead - since u deny a truth everything you continue saying it's a lie

    ...that doesn't even make sense? I've no idea what you're trying to say. You didn't prove/provide proof of what you said. I'm not inclined to believe it. I think you're confusing 'spying' with web crawling.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_crawling
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