Print 30 comment(s) - last by bob4432.. on Jan 14 at 4:19 AM

China may have finally driven away a U.S. search company

After a turbulent time trying to cash in on an internet population of more than 300 million users, Google may leave behind China.

Google first entered China in 2000, but elected not to open an office in the country until 2005.   The company's hesitation made it lose out to other American-based companies also looking to cash in on, but it quickly rebounded and became the leading U.S. search company in the country.

According to the company, Gmail and other Google services have undergone countless attacks by unknown sources  -- it seems the email accounts of Chinese human rights activists were accessed and other nefarious actions were performed on not only Google, but other tech companies.  

“In mid-December, we detected a highly sophisticated and targeted attack on our corporate infrastructure originating from China that resulted in the theft of intellectual property from Google,” wrote Google Chief Legal Advisor David Drummond on the company's official blog. “However, it soon became clear that what at first appeared to be solely a security incident--albeit a significant one--was something quite different.”

"We have been briefed by Google on these allegations, which raise very serious concerns and questions," U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton noted to reporters.  "We look to the Chinese government for an explanation.  She added "the ability to operate with confidence in cyberspace is critical in a modern society and economy," but the U.S. government still doesn't have an exact stance on the issue.

Similar to other western companies, Google adhered to Chinese government policies, and has agreed to terms of service that would not be accepted in North America and Europe.  Google, Yahoo and Microsoft all hope to have a large presence in China, but have struggled to compete with Chinese Baidu  search engine.

If Google leaves China, Microsoft and Yahoo will desperately attempt to stop those users from switching to Baidu.  Microsoft disclosed at the end of 2009 that China is the most important search market it must focus on, as Google is the No. 2 search engine behind Baidu's 63.9% control.

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By Brandon Hill on 1/13/2010 7:33:01 AM , Rating: 5
"You sleep with dogs, you wake up with fleas"

I know there is a lot of money in China, but this had to be expected by Google -- China just doesn't play by ordinary rules.

By Lord 666 on 1/13/2010 8:04:16 AM , Rating: 5
Actually will have more respect for Google if they truly pull out of China.

By SSDMaster on 1/13/2010 8:20:43 AM , Rating: 3
Its not human nature to Pull out.
Google will stay for the monies.

By Creig on 1/13/2010 8:36:57 AM , Rating: 5
Its not human nature to Pull out.

That's why there are more than 1.3 billion Chinese.

By Brandon Hill on 1/13/2010 8:36:17 AM , Rating: 2

By Smilin on 1/13/2010 9:55:40 AM , Rating: 3
Ahh phuckit, give him a 6.

By AnnihilatorX on 1/13/2010 10:07:28 AM , Rating: 3

By rippleyaliens on 1/13/2010 3:50:47 PM , Rating: 3
+6 X2

By The0ne on 1/13/2010 11:05:05 AM , Rating: 2
I have two beef with Google and that's this issue, which I hope they will pull out of China and denied those bastards of information, and the fact that they will own everything and make us slaves in the future :)

This is a serious hack coordinated by several large Chinese companies solely to go after activists. How fcking screwed up is this to our American senses. I don't think anyone here would disagree this is just outright in-humane considering what China does with them afterward. Bill is not going to be able to save these people nor Nixon.

If Google doesn't take harsh actions then they will surely loose some credibility as a "free" company. Well, at least with me they will. Talk the talk but can't walk it. I say fck-off.

By lco45 on 1/13/2010 5:46:22 PM , Rating: 2
From the Monty Python song:
"There's 900 million of them in the world today;
You'd better learn to like them, that's what I say"

Let go of your anger, my padawan learner.


By Hieyeck on 1/13/2010 8:41:08 AM , Rating: 5
China just doesn't play by American rules.


Different culture, different stage of idustrialization.

Japan still treats women as second-class citizens.

Europe thinks American laws have been too heavily burdened by lobbies to be effective.

Most importantly, it took 100 years between emancipation and Rosa Parks. If you expect change overnight, you're no better than Mick and his environuts. In 50 years, China went from being a closed 3rd world country fearing abuse by western nations, to a superpower to be feared by those same nations. While it may not have been a very nice road, it can't be denied that because power was centralized, the vision was singular and China was able to move forward at breakneck speed instead of meandering along the path of progress.

By AnnihilatorX on 1/13/2010 10:10:25 AM , Rating: 2
Not sure what this is about and how this is related,
but the Chu Ko Nu unit fires 5 arrows in rapid succession.
The repeating cross-bow was invented in China.

By Murloc on 1/13/2010 10:27:34 AM , Rating: 2
it shoots many arrows at the same moment, and you must not forget that the chinese have a tecnology to give them more attack.
It becomes like 4 arrows x 8+6 damage each = rain of deadly fire

By VitalyTheUnknown on 1/13/2010 9:53:39 AM , Rating: 2
China just doesn't play by Greek rules.


By Woobagong on 1/13/2010 10:18:39 AM , Rating: 2
If we look back a few decades, china has changed A LOT, back there it was not even imaginable what we have today. It takes time to change such a huge country and deeply carved schemes and traditions. How can the highly controlled country be transformed into a "free" one, without falling back into anarchy or even civil war? Russia did take a few steps too rashly, and so the enthusiasm after 1989 was soon followed by a deep disillusion. The free space was used up quickly by corrupted elements. It's going to be hard to get rid of them.

The fear that slows all down in china is that without the iron fist, all mayhem breaks loose. I can understand that fear. Alas, fear was never a good advisor but it influences many decicions in all countries.

It's not a good idea to put too much pressure on the chinese government, this makes them dish out with the iron fist even more... it takes time, a damn long time...

By sorry dog on 1/13/2010 10:37:17 AM , Rating: 2
So I guess it's in the ancient chinese culture rule book that those in power can facilitate cyber-attacks against those that they don't agree with.

I believe China's meteoric rise to power is built on the hard work of millions being allowed to have ambitions, in spite of their government trying to hold them back... albiet to a lesser degree in the last 20 years.

By Hieyeck on 1/13/2010 6:20:52 PM , Rating: 1
Because improvement from Top-Down has worked out SO well for Russia (see Gorbachev).

The stupid thing is to try and change everything overnight, it leads to violence and destruction. The one thing Chinese culture has learned in 4000 years of continuous existence (which NO other culture in the world can boast of) is patience. Deng Xiaoping's greatest accomplishment wasn't throwing open the doors of China, but merely unlocking the door. China is trying to reign in it's potential because if it grows too fast (as it might possibly be doing), the rest of the world will fear it and try to stamp it out. Not just that, but internally, if growth goes unchecked, it will turn into a cluttered, disorganized sprawl, the likes of which you see in LA. Tokyo is half the size of LA with 4 times the population and I can say that its urban planning and layout is HEAPS more efficient and economical.

You must first learn to walk, before you can run.

By The0ne on 1/13/2010 2:48:23 PM , Rating: 2
I said America is #1 damn you. Show your American dumb-ass spirt and agree or we'll bomb the crap out of you!

By Ammohunt on 1/13/2010 1:47:56 PM , Rating: 2
I am not buying it it only took 10 years for China turn into Communist dicatorship.

By Hieyeck on 1/13/2010 6:28:22 PM , Rating: 1
Good lord, read some history. If you look at the 'Communist Dictatorship' of China in its early times, it really isn't that much different from the absolute monarchies that ruled for 4000 years. Hell, the emperors and Mao even promised the same things.

(I ignored the period where China was "officially" ruled by the Nationalists, because for most of that period, China was fractured and ruled by numerous warlords, and the nationalists only came out on top for a few years)

By rudy on 1/13/2010 10:25:39 PM , Rating: 2
It takes alot less time to develop now days because the technology to do so is all in place and all you have to do is read to know what to do. It took them 50 years because they weren't really doing it right before.

The real crime is that while we think China is this great fiscally smart country they may not be. And this is sad because if one of the big BRIC nations tumbles we may go into that depression we spent so much to avoid no matter what.

The point is you cannot compare growth now to growth in a technologically inferior time. Now days any half educated country has almost no excuse for the government making huge mistakes.

By bob4432 on 1/14/2010 4:19:41 AM , Rating: 2
that breakneck speed is called theft.

By deeznuts on 1/13/2010 3:24:39 PM , Rating: 1
It's simple really. Google doesn't want yellow babies. Pulling out.

"Don't Be Evil"
By trajan on 1/13/2010 10:58:48 AM , Rating: 2
I agree with Lord 666's comment above - if Google actually pulls out of China over this, it will vastly increase my respect for the company. Respect that took a serious hit after Schmidt's comments on privacy a few weeks back. I'm still not sure what bothers me more - the fact that someone so influential could be so ignorant, or the harm all that ignorance can cause.

We all know China is a huge potential market and if Google pulls out, Google will surrender a huge amount of future (potential) profit. Bravo if they put their "Don't Be Evil" motto ahead of making more cash. Showing that they have integrity and deserve the goodwill they've accumulated is going to be worth a lot more to Google's shareholders in the long run.

(Qualify all of this by recent reporting that Google has been faring rather poorly in the Asian markets. This could be part of a broader cut-and-run strategy. But I'm willing to give them the benefit of the doubt if they do the right thing here.)

RE: "Don't Be Evil"
By mrzed on 1/13/2010 1:32:58 PM , Rating: 2
Nope - this is how I read this at first too - and seems to be everyone's default assumption but it is clearly not the case.

Google was happy to play censor to get access to the market. What they had was not a change of heart based on morality, but a realization that the business/govt climate in China is threatening their intellectual property (which their entire worth is based on).

They are leaving because local operations are under threat as a side effect of the local environment - perhaps crackdowns on freedom are the motivation for the hacking, but it is the hacking and subsequent threat to assets that is the problem for Google. This is a business decision, not a moral one. People are too quick to give them the benefit of the doubt here.

RE: "Don't Be Evil"
By lco45 on 1/13/2010 5:54:40 PM , Rating: 2
I don't understand how Google is protecting its IP by closing

I mean, hackers can still hack gmail accounts, and can still interrogate

It seems Google is really doing this for ethical reasons, strange as that seems.


My recommendation
By Roy2001 on 1/13/2010 2:11:29 PM , Rating: 2
There are a lot of places to promote human right like Saudi. I strongly recommend Google to fight with all of them.

Lessons to Learn about china
By rippleyaliens on 1/13/2010 4:00:49 PM , Rating: 2
It is now known.. 1) When in China you operate As the Chinese do.. BUT!!! And I am still at a lost on why google/microsoft/apple hasne't realized. China will let you in, let you do your business model, then CLONE what you have, and re-sell it as Chinese made.

2. Chinese Hackers= Government sponsored Hacking.. With the level of Chinese surveillance on their own people. The Great Chinese Firewall, Isnt is strange, that google is being hacked. How can that happen, if the chinese have that level of security on the internet, within their borders. Easy.. If the government is hacking, then there are no people to point at. Google cannot win in a situation like that.. No american company can...Apples phone is already cloned, and in full force there.

Only solution is to just stop depending on Chinese dollars, to drive your company. In time, what you sell there, will get stopped.. and you will see your product with chinese owners, selling same product at much lower prices,.

"This is about the Internet.  Everything on the Internet is encrypted. This is not a BlackBerry-only issue. If they can't deal with the Internet, they should shut it off." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis
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