Google in China

In: Computers and Technology

Submitted By jridinbig
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Question 1 Response – Prior to the launch of Google.cn, what factors should Google have considered in reaching their decision to comply with Chinese government censorship laws?
One factor Google should have considered is the financial perspective. From a financial perspective, China represented for Google a dynamic and fast-growing, though increasingly competitive, market (Wilson, Ramos and Harvey, 2007). According to Google’s 2006 projections, the Chinese internet market was expected to grow from 105 million users to 250 million users by 2010 (Schrage, 2006). Another factor Google should have considered is ethics. Google’s decision to self-censor Google.cn attracted significant ethical criticism at the time. The company’s motto is “Don’t Be Evil,” and prior to entering China, Google had successfully set itself apart from other technology giants, becoming a company trusted by millions of users to protect and store their personal information. The choice to accept self-censorship, and the discussion and debate generated by this choice, forced Google to re-examine itself as a company and forced the international community to reconsider the implications of censorship (Wilson, Ramos and Harvey, 2007). Another factor to consider was if the decision was in total agreement with Google’s mission and policies. Google senior policy counsel Andrew McLaughlin knew removing search results was inconsistent with Google’s mission, but also believed that providing no information at all was more inconsistent with their mission. Google’s objective is to make the world’s information accessible to everyone, everywhere, all the time. It is a mission that expresses two fundamental commitments: (a) First, their business commitment to satisfy the interests of users, and by doing so to build a leading company in a highly competitive industry; and (b) Second, their policy conviction that…...

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