Google is taking an even harder line with China after Google was hacked by what it calls an attack on Chinese dissenters. Google has alleged that hackers from China were able to access Gmail accounts of those who oppose the government of China. Now Google is postponing the launch of its cell phone until this dispute can be settled.
One recent article from Yahoo! News states:
China has the world’s most-populous mobile phone market, with more than 700 million accounts and increasingly prosperous customers who readily pay for the latest technology and services.
Beijing referred to Google by name Tuesday for the first time since its January 12 announcement that it would no longer censor search results in China and might shut down Google.cn. The government said the search giant must obey China’s laws and traditions, suggesting it was giving no ground in talks with the company.
“Foreign enterprises in China need to adhere to China’s laws and regulations, respect the interests of the general public and cultural traditions and shoulder corresponding responsibilities. Google is no exception,” said Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu at a regular news briefing.
Beijing promotes Internet use for business and education but blocks access to material deemed subversive or pornographic, including Web sites abroad run by dissidents and human rights groups.
Free speech groups and the White House lauded Google’s stance but there was no indication other companies might follow its lead and challenge government controls.
A Google pullout would be awkward for China. Chinese and foreign businesses rely on its e-mail, maps and other services based abroad. That could lead to disruptions if authorities try to retaliate by blocking access to Google’s U.S. site.
It makes one wonder if other companies here in the U.S. will take a stance, or just use this dispute for their own personal gains. Both Microsoft and Intel have a very large presence in China and may not wish to disrupt their relationship with the Chinese government. I still continue to applaud Google for its stance.
Thoughts? What do you think?