12 January 2010

Google vs. China

Despite being a long-time Sinophile, I have to support Google's recent actions against China. Apparently, hackers originating in China attacked Google in order to get information on Chinese human rights campaigners, and had used phishing attempts and malware to get access to other human rights activists around the world. (At the same time, the attack also attempted to get proprietary information from Google and many other companies.) While it is not clear that it was the Chinese government that sponsored or had anything to do with it, Google is fighting back by un-censoring Google.cn. The Google execs have stated that if it means being blocked in China and unable to work there, so be it.

Google has long held that it is better for them to be there, even censored, than not, but they've apparently changed their mind. I will admit that I switched my email address to a Google one after Yahoo helped China pick up dissidents who had used Yahoo accounts to spread their ideas. Hopefully, losing out on business opportunities like this will help the Chinese government realize there are consequences to human rights abuses. I am by no means optimistic on this score, but until businesses impose consequences, there is no hope at all. Thank you Google for hopefully leading the way.

No comments:

Post a Comment