Feeds

Google kowtows to China

How low can you go?

Top three mobile application threats

Google has been basking in good publicity from refusing US government demands to hand over search results but in China it is happy to create a search engine based on government specifications.

Google will offer a censored version of its search engine running on servers in China. It will remove results on "sensitive" topics like human rights and Tibet. The decision would not seem so bad coming from another company but Google used to pride itself on the morality of its business strategy and devotion to free speech.

Andrew McLaughlin, Google's senior policy counsel, said: "In order to operate from China, we have removed some content from the search results available on Google.cn in response to local law, regulation or policy."

"While removing search results is inconsistent with Google's mission, providing no information (or a heavily degraded user experience that amounts to no information) is more inconsistent with our mission."

Google will offer web and image searches, local search and Google news. More on Reuters here.

The search giant will not offer its email or blogging services. Rival portal operations from Yahoo! and Microsoft have attracted controversy recently with Yahoo!'s decision to hand over personal details of a disident journalist and Microsoft's removal of certain words (democracy, freedom) from the Chinese version of MSN.

Reporters Without Borders accused the search giant of hypocrisy pointing out that it defends its US users against government action but will not offer Chinese users the same protection. More here.

Baidu.com is the local Nasdaq-listed rival to Google.

This is not the first time Google has kowtowed to government. This blog points out that Google Germany blocks access to a body modification (think extreme piercing) website in response to a request from the German government.

In other repressive bastards news Iran is blocking access to the BBC's Persian service for the first time - more details here.®

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Airbus promises Wi-Fi – yay – and 3D movies (meh) in new A330
If the person in front reclines their seat, this could get interesting
UK Parliament rubber-stamps EMERGENCY data grab 'n' keep bill
Just 49 MPs oppose Drip's rushed timetable
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations
Vows to uphold 'zero tolerance' policy on underage workers
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.