Magog: Unguarded
Magog: Unguarded
Swarming Around... cats living with dogs... total chaos.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Cave Men?

I'm not sure how to reconcile this:

GOOGLE will today cave in to pressure from the Chinese Government by launching a local website that strips out information not approved by the Communist authorities.
The company, whose motto is "Don't be evil," is launching a version of its site that restricts Chinese people from searching for information about Tibetan independence or the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre.

...with this:

The company is refusing to cooperate with the Bush administration's demand to see what millions of Google customers have been looking up online.

It's not even relevant whether or not I happen to agree in one of the cases... the point is that it's inconsistent. Sure, one is about protecting data privacy and the other is about -- uh, "enforced" data privacy -- but it's still caving into the government in one instance and "standing firm" in another.

If anyone had any illusions about a company this size doing anything out of a sense of principle, I think it's safe to dismiss them at this point. These decisions are made solely with the bottom line in mind. That's just fine by the stock holders (wish I was one), and it's not likely to change anytime soon. And assuming one has reasonable expectations, I guess no problem... but hopefully this will quash rumors of "Google standing up to Bush" out of some sense of ethics. It all boils down to getting people to use the website, plain and simple.

posted by Max Power | 5:59 PM
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