Google has now finally found a loophole to circumvent the Chinese laws and provide uncensored internet to Chinese public. The government is not amused though. There have been many actions taken by the government to suppress Google’s presence totally in China. The Chinese government has also tried to cut Google out its marketshare in other related businesses too.
People’s Daily, the official newspaper of the Chinese Communist Party, has gone as far as to allege links between Google and US spy agencies. It has lambasted Google of collusion with the US to start a new internet war.
There also have been supporting comments as well. A US congressional panel has praised Google for taking such a bold stand for the sake of free expression and condemned Microsoft for continuing to provide the highly censored internet searches in China. Microsoft though has reiterated by stating that it would continue to work with the government to foster a more open internet.
Back then when Google decided to enter the Chinese market it had seen a 400million population of internet users, a number which could more than double given proper internet proliferation. It was an infinite market for Google. Google’s new stance though shows little concern to its long range plans in China.
Google has exploited Chinese laws to circumvent the censorship requirements in China. An act Chinese government cannot tolerate. China is definitely not happy of Google using their “one country, two policies” principle against them. China could decide to totally shut out Google. This has its repercussions though. Google users in China mostly constitute of educated and influential people. There could be backlash at Chinese human rights stand on this issue.
Google has stated that it hopes to continue its other businesses in China normally. The chances of that happening appear pretty slim. China Mobile, the country’s biggest mobile service provider and one of Google’s partners, is now facing pressure from the government to remove Google as its search engine from its smartphones. A popular website in China, Tom.com, has already stopped using Google as its search engine. China Unicom, the second largest telecom company in China has scrapped its plans to produce an Android based smartphone. The fact that is even more infuriating to the government is that Google has not broken any laws by providing search from Hong Kong.
Google states that it is pushing for free expression, but pushing the Chinese government in a domestic issue isn’t exactly a good idea. The company could face stiff heat from China in the future. Google founder, Sergey Brin has said that he hopes someday Google and China will patch up their differences and Google will return to China. This does seem a rare possibility.