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  • » 06/07/2006, 00.00

    UNITED STATES – CHINA

    Google admits betraying principles in China



    Google co-founder acknowledges his company compromised its principles when it accepted Beijing's "set of rules that we weren't comfortable with".

    Washington (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Google co-founder Sergey Brin acknowledged that the dominant internet company had compromised its principles by accommodating censorship demands by the Chinese government.

    Meeting reporters yesterday, Mr Brin said Google had agreed to such demands only after Chinese authorities blocked its service in that country. Google's rivals accepted the same demands, which he described as "a set of rules that we weren't comfortable with".

    "We felt that perhaps we could compromise our principles but provide ultimately more information for the Chinese," Mr Brin said.

    He also addressed internet users' expectations of privacy in an era of increased government surveillance, saying people misunderstand the limited safeguards of their personal electronic information.

    Google's China-approved Web service omits politically sensitive information that might be retrieved during Internet searches, such as details about the June 1989 suppression of political unrest in Tiananmen Square, information about the Dalai Lama, Taiwan, democracy and freedom of expression.

    When Google's Chinese version was launched, google.cn informed users that "to be able to work within limits set by the central government, links to websites deemed unacceptable have been removed. While removing search results is inconsistent with Google's mission, providing no information . . . is more inconsistent with our mission."

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    See also

    02/02/2006 CHINA – UNITED STATES
    US Congress warns IT firms against China censorship
    Lawmakers slam companies for putting profits before freedom. A code of conduct is under discussion. Anger is high in the Chinese blogger community.

    20/02/2006 CHINA – UNITED STATES
    US draft bill to target companies that help China censor the internet
    If approved the bill would impose fines up to US$ 2 million and five years in jail for companies that help the governments of China, Cuba, Iran, Libya and Myanmar enforce censorship.

    25/03/2010 CHINA – UNITED STATES
    Second internet giant follows Google and pulls out of China
    Domain name registration giant GoDaddy says it is stopping its main operations in China because of new restrictive rules. “We didn't want to act as an agent of the Chinese government,” the company says. Some market watchers suspect real reason for leaving is red ink, not human rights.

    16/01/2010 CHINA - UNITED STATES
    Beijing dampens Google controversy and censors news on line
    For the Chinese government, the clash with the Mountain View giant will not affect trade relations with the United States. Washington announces a formal protest and demands explanations about hacking attacks. China censors the controversy and authorizes only state media reports.

    28/08/2007 UNITED STATES - CHINA
    Yahoo! charged with helping Beijing suppress human rights
    The World Organisation for Human Rights has appeared before a San Francisco court on behalf of two Chinese Journalists, arrested for having sent via internet articles critical of the government. Beijing was able tot race them thanks to the help of the information technology giant, which has admitted its guilt.



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