Thursday, January 26, 2006

US Congressman Takes Google to Task on China


You're kidding me right?

Is this a ploy to force Google to turn over search results or truly Congress attempting to understand how the global Internet marketplace operates?

Some folks may take issue with Google's decision to operate in China. OK.

Those folks need to keep in mind that the right to free speech does not exist in China with or without Google. Our attempts to understand what life is like without free-speech is limited by the very fact that we have free speech. We know what it is like to have free speech and can't imagine doing without. Chinese only know what it is like to have censorship and can only dream of what it must be like to have freedom. Got it?

Wouldn't it be better to let Google (and others) bring some enlightenment to China so they can grow and mature? Or is it better to continue to wall off China from the rest of the world, keeping them in technological and intellectual darkness, and help the Chinese government perpetuate the very human rights violations we say we are trying to prevent?

The Internet is not a communications medium like radio. It shows a lack of understanding to equate the interactive power of the Web with the simple broadcast voice received on a radio telling the oppressed what it is like to be free.

The Internet is much more dangerous than radio; once folks get a "taste" of freedom they just keep wanting more.

Chris Smith, a Republican congressman from New Jersey on Wednesday in a statement drew comparisons between Google and Radio Free Europe and Asia, reflecting on the capacity the radio stations had on empowering the "voices of freedom throughout Communist countries."

US congressman takes Google to task on China
(FT) -- Google will be called to task in Washington next month following a controversial decision by the internet search engine to launch a China-based version of its website that will censor results to avoid angering the country's Communist government.

Google Agrees to Censor Results in China

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am a rookie to the internet. i thought it was the new freedom of expresion technology.
when i heard what google did with china, i realized what could (or maybe already is) happen.

if a large corporation offered google millions of dollars, would google censor any sites that said negative things about this corporation?
it is apparently easy to do such a thing.
are they doing it now?
i am now more skeptical of the intenet and its "freedom" of speech capacity.

7:28 PM EST  
Anonymous Alden Bates said...

If Google doesn't filter out sites that the Chinese government doesn't like, the Chinese govt will use filters to stop their people using Google. Filtering the sites is the only way they can operate in China.

I don't think a large corporation would have one billion people as leverage. :)

3:46 AM EST  

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