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Google Switches Servers To Combat Chinese Government's Censorship!

| Filed under: PolitikTech Talk


What a complicated and difficult situation!!

In an attempt to compromise with China's strict censorship laws, Google has moved its search engine from mainland China to to the site's Chinese-languaged based service based in Hong Kong.

David Drummond, SVP, Corporate Development and Chief Legal Officer, released this statement today:

On January 12, we announced on this blog that Google and more than twenty other U.S. companies had been the victims of a sophisticated cyber attack originating from China, and that during our investigation into these attacks we had uncovered evidence to suggest that the Gmail accounts of dozens of human rights activists connected with China were being routinely accessed by third parties, most likely via phishing scams or malware placed on their computers. We also made clear that these attacks and the surveillance they uncovered—combined with attempts over the last year to further limit free speech on the web in China including the persistent blocking of websites such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google Docs and Blogger—had led us to conclude that we could no longer continue censoring our results on Google.cn.

So earlier today we stopped censoring our search services—Google Search, Google News, and Google Images—on Google.cn. Users visiting Google.cn are now being redirected to Google.com.hk, where we are offering uncensored search in simplified Chinese, specifically designed for users in mainland China and delivered via our servers in Hong Kong. Users in Hong Kong will continue to receive their existing uncensored, traditional Chinese service, also from Google.com.hk. Due to the increased load on our Hong Kong servers and the complicated nature of these changes, users may see some slowdown in service or find some products temporarily inaccessible as we switch everything over.

Figuring out how to make good on our promise to stop censoring search on Google.cn has been hard. We want as many people in the world as possible to have access to our services, including users in mainland China, yet the Chinese government has been crystal clear throughout our discussions that self-censorship is a non-negotiable legal requirement. We believe this new approach of providing uncensored search in simplified Chinese from Google.com.hk is a sensible solution to the challenges we've faced—it's entirely legal and will meaningfully increase access to information for people in China. We very much hope that the Chinese government respects our decision, though we are well aware that it could at any time block access to our services. We will therefore be carefully monitoring access issues, and have created this new web page, which we will update regularly each day, so that everyone can see which Google services are available in China.

In terms of Google's wider business operations, we intend to continue R&D work in China and also to maintain a sales presence there, though the size of the sales team will obviously be partially dependent on the ability of mainland Chinese users to access Google.com.hk. Finally, we would like to make clear that all these decisions have been driven and implemented by our executives in the United States, and that none of our employees in China can, or should, be held responsible for them. Despite all the uncertainty and difficulties they have faced since we made our announcement in January, they have continued to focus on serving our Chinese users and customers. We are immensely proud of them.

This should serve as a reminder to those in the USA that although we still have a long way to go in certain areas, we are EXTREMELY lucky where we, for the most part, are free to express ourselves in any way we choose!

[Image via WENN.]

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9 comments to “Google Switches Servers To Combat Chinese Government's Censorship!”

  1. 1

    If you don't think the department of homeland security isn't monitoring activity in the US you're seriously deluded.

  2. 2

    You are not CNN nor any kind of respected news source.
    Don't even TRY to cover real news as if you know what you're doing

  3. 3

    @snarky404 true, but it's not as invasive as the way china's government is handling it.

    there are groups protesting all sorts of things in USA and the most that will happen is you'll get arrested. in china, you'll just disappear.

  4. 4

    now hurry back to your order of cream of sumyungguy…

  5. 5

    China is such a shitty country to have such bad human rights. Next China will make the entire internet illegal. And remember that the US in in major debt to China - fun, eh?

  6. 6

    I've always wondered - does anyone ever read all the text that Perez posts?? It's like reading an essay.. in this case at least..

  7. 7

    Ok, I don't care. I come to this website to see nip slips, not this shit.

  8. 8

    except when Homeland Security agents tap into your e-mails and web-site traffic logs and don't like what they see.

  9. 9

    If you read the article you'll see that the move to the HK servers was done to circumvent hacks on the mainland-based servers.

    I think the Chinese are retarded if they don't realize people are capable of dialing into uncensored service providers to get the information they want.

    Electronic censorship is silly at this point there are too many workarounds.