Print 41 comment(s) - last by fallacies.. on Feb 19 at 3:51 PM

Now that the US government is getting involved, it has some people wondering why any government is involved in the first place

Everyone has something to say about privacy issues and whether or not Yahoo and Google should censor material for the Chinese government.  Earlier today, Chinese officials argued that it has the right to police the Internet in any way that it deems appropriate for the citizens of China.  This statement comes a day after four companies spoke in front of Congress on charges that blame the companies for helping limit free speech in return for market access.      

Yahoo, Google, Cisco Systems, and Microsoft were recently grilled at a congressional hearing about human-rights violations and censorship because of various decisions made by each company.  It has been well known that China is notorious for censoring and arresting users that don't abide by the strict rules that the government has put in place.  Specifically, Google is under fire from critics for bowing down and agreeing to censor content so the company is allowed to do business in China.  Microsoft is blamed for removing a blog that was too critical of the government.  Yahoo allegedly gave information to the government which led to a crackdown on Chinese citizens and journalists.   

With some analysts speculating that the number of Internet search users in China may increase from 100 million to 187 million people by 2007, we should become acclimated to the possibility that more companies will do whatever the Chinese government wishes in return for open market access.

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Leave them alone
By bl4ck54bb4th on 2/16/2006 8:42:30 PM , Rating: 2
The issue here is that the US government has no right to punish corporations for their completely legal actions overseas. The Chinese government wants censorship, so there is nothing wrong with providing it for them. The US government has no jurisdiction over the people of China, so unless US corporations are breaking Chinese laws, I don't see the need for any punishment. We may not agree with China's politics, but our government has no right to interfere -- this is a question of the US government overstepping its bounds.

RE: Leave them alone
By qwertynerd on 2/16/2006 10:22:03 PM , Rating: 3
BTW, I forgot to mention that I'm was happily surprised to hear that these corporations were getting grilled by the US Congress. Maybe there is a light at the end of the tunnel after all.

Ignoring the Chinese goverment = Leaving them alone

RE: Leave them alone
By Xenoterranos on 2/17/2006 12:52:07 AM , Rating: 2
failure to act whilst staring corruption and immorality in the face can be, and ususaly is, a greater crime that said cprruption and immorality.

By tjr508 on 2/17/2006 4:05:20 AM , Rating: 3
Again, why is any government getting involved with internet content? This is just the chance for a bunch of congressmen to sound like heros by shouting out against sensorship while at the same time expanding the government's overall reach on such issues.

The only sensorship i am in favor of is that i wish MCI and ATT would get together to find a way to block most government(all governments included) propoganda, leaving the people with free thought.

This still doesnt mean we have to right to stick our noses in china's business. If i owned a company that could reach 187million customers, hell i would sensor all objectional material and then hire 5000 people to write stories about how good of a place china is to be.

"We are going to continue to work with them to make sure they understand the reality of the Internet.  A lot of these people don't have Ph.Ds, and they don't have a degree in computer science." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis

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