Feeds

Institutional investors push Google on China

Vote to be held at AGM

SANS - Survey on application security programs

The man who advises five New York public pension funds is calling on Google to stop caving in to Chinese censorship demands.

New York City Comptroller William C Thompson Jnr has submitted a shareholder proposal to be voted on at Google's Annual General Meeting on 10 May. Traditionally very few, if any, shareholders vote at these events which approve management decisions like how much to pay the board and whether the accountants should stay on.

Thompson makes six proposals - that Google should not store user information in countries which consider political speech a crime, that Google should not engage in censorship, that it legally resist demands for censorship and that it will warn users when it does accept legal censorship demands.

Fifth on list is a proposal that Google tell users what its data retention policies are. The sixth proposals asks that when it does accept legal censorship demands it makes that information public.

Institutional investors, especially pension funds, rarely make use of their power in public - although theoretically democratic few companies have trouble getting resolutions passed, or over-ruled, at general meetings.

The proposal will need a majority of shareholders to pass but regardless of the result it may wake Google up to the disquiet its Chinese activities are raising.

The search engine has won few friends for kowtowing to Chinese authorities. Although Google refused to hand over search logs to the US government, citing privacy concerns, it did co-operate with Chinese censors. Google offers a much reduced internet index to people in China and removes results on request.

New York City Comptroller William C Thompson Jnr. waged a previous campaign to stop Halliburton dealing with Iraq.

He gave evidence to the US Senate Trade committee discussing how to pressure companies to stop trading with nations that sponsor terrorism.

The proposal is included in Google's proxy statement - it's about half way down on page 30.

In other news Google announced changes to its personal home page - which has been rebranded as iGoogle. The page can be changed using "gadgets" - making it easier to create a YouTube channel, make lists or include a mini-blog on the page. The service is now available in 15 new languages.®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
Sorry London, Europe's top tech city is Munich
New 'Atlas of ICT Activity' finds innovation isn't happening at Silicon Roundabout
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
It may be ILLEGAL to run Heartbleed health checks – IT lawyer
Do the right thing, earn up to 10 years in clink
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.