Yahoo, Google, and Free Speech

From the illustrious Guardian we learn:

Yahoo appears to have kowtowed to the Chinese government yet again and passed details of a fourth dissident writer’s email account to the security forces, brightening the spotlight thrown on the dubious compromises that western businesses are making to operate within the world’s second largest internet market.

Doing business in China has always involved a heavy dose of realpolitik – a senior mobile phone industry executive, desperate to get into the world’s fastest growing mobile market, once described operating in China to me as akin to walking into a room and taking down his trousers. But what makes Yahoo’s flagrant co-operation and the recent self-censorship carried out by search engine rival Google so shocking to web users, is that the internet has been sold to the world as a tool for free speech not for maintaining or even strengthening the political status quo.

Google and Yahoo lecture the US Congress on free speech under the guise of “net neutrality” while helping communist China oppress dissidents. Who are they kidding?

2 thoughts on “Yahoo, Google, and Free Speech”

  1. Freedom for the Chinese people from their communist overlords will come from the Chinese people, not from Yahoo, Cisco, Microsoft, et al. If the Chinese haven’t the stones to demand it, they don’t deserve it. It’s their country, their government, and their laws. If they don’t like any of it, they should change it. It is not in an American company’s purview to decide which local laws it will obey.

  2. Google and Yahoo don’t have to collaborate with these bastards if they don’t want to. Andif that means they don’t have an official presence in China, so be it.

    But as things currently stand, they’re in no position to claim a love for free speech, especially while urging the US government to act more like China in terms of regulating the Internet. Their hands are not clean.

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