If you are familiar with the happenings these months related to the Google in China, you should not forget the debating several months ago that concerns the exit of Google, a world-famous search engine, from China, a country that is famous around the world for its strict censorship on both Internet and traditional medias, like TV, newspapers and magazines. In fact, in the past few months, majority of Chinese like me, are still holding the hope that the Google should maintain its service in China, with the consideration on the commercial benefit, which, in my opinion, ultimately determines the decision for most businessman.
Google Eventually Leaves China
However, the exit of Google bring me new understand of the business. Unlike the most common businessman that profit is the only thing they care, the great groups, like Google, make me understand that determination of its own culture and perspective is also essential. Till now, Google is the only company that bring the censorship in China open to the public. Though the censorship policy in China is quite strict and known to the practitioners in the field of media, it is rarely known to most common citizens in China, especially those who are not that familiar with Internet and whose English is not that good to read some articles published overseas.
If you open Google.cn this morning, you are surprisingly to see the following website, instead of the traditional Google.cn, a special version of Google that meets the censorship requirement in Chinese government:
On the front page of Google.com.hk, you can observe a short sentence saying “Welcome to the new house of Google Search in China”. Due to the special policy that is adapted in Hong Kong, though it is regarded as a part of territory of PRC, no censorship but only some potential controls on media exists. Following the rules in Hong Kong, Google would face less litigation risk for their oppose to this policy. But the question is that I am wondering whether this site would be forbidden for visit from China. Previous examples for this prohibition includes Yahoo! HK and many BBS in Hong Kong.
- Official Annoucements from Google on Its Exit
An updated version of the announcement is also available in both English and Chinese. Due to the key words that are involved in this article, this article would soon be forbidden, according to the rules of censorship. The only question is that how long it would stay in live. Following are the two pics for this announcement. One in English from the Google Blog,and the other in China from the directly link to Google.com. You can click on the pictures for larger size.
- Availability of Other Products: Official Evidence
The other action that Google made is that they expose the existence of GFW. Though it has been understood for most Internet users, it is unwillingly to know for majorities. As a strong evidence that argues the freedom of Internet recently claimed by Chinese officials, a site that detects the availability of some largest Web 2.0 applications around the world for most Internet users in China, without abnormal skills and trainings is now available. For interested readers, you can click here. Following is the result of detection today.
We are living in a country that regards censorship as a necessary step for filtering ‘unhealthy information’, though porn webs are mostly available. As a good saying goes that, you should try to be accustomed to the environment once you find you can hardly change it. In a country that regards politics as a sensitive term, any discussion on related topics can bring you unexpected consequences. What we can do is to follow the policy, do what we can do, and never try to break the rule.