After ban, Kai-Fu Lee invites 30M to follow him on Twitter

Former Google China chief gets kicked off China-based microblogging sites after complaining about state controls over the Internet.

An outspoken opponent of censorship in China, Kai-Fu Lee has responded to a ban from social networks in his homeland by inviting his 30 million followers to follow him on Twitter.

Lee, the former chief of Google's China division, was banned from China-based Weibo and a Tencent service for three days after using the microblogging services to complain about state controls over the Internet. It's not clear who ordered the ban, but suspicion has fallen on the government, which heavily limits Internet access inside the country.

"I've been silenced on Sina and Tencent for three days, so everyone can come here to find me," he said on Twitter, without elaborating on the reason. Twitter is also blocked in China, but circumnavigating that control is said to be fairly easy.

No stranger to controversy, the computer scientist ran Google's Greater China operation from 2005 to 2009 after being the subject of a bitter employee custody battle between Google and Microsoft where Lee previously worked.

Lee recently posted a summary of a Wall Street Journal report on Weibo that described how slow Internet speeds and instability were discouraging overseas businesses from relocating to China. A post last month declared his support for a newspaper embroiled in a censorship dispute with government authorities.

 

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