Google: Burned in Beijing?

Google co-founder Sergey Brin was in Washington, D.C., Tuesday, lobbying on behalf of Net neutrality. But he found himself being pressed by reporters on another topic--the search engine's business practices in China.

censored

The company earlier this year launched a search engine that censors search results for Chinese users--a move Brin acknowledged "compromise(d) our principles," the Associated Press reported.

Brin told the AP that the search engine agreed to the rules after Chinese authorities blocked its service.

"Perhaps now the principled approach makes more sense," Brin said.

Blog community response:

"Whether or not you support Google's reasoning, what was surprising was that they didn't seem to have a reasonable explanation ready for how this fit with their overall corporate philosophy -- which they had used over the years to build up a tremendous amount of goodwill. Saying sorry does help to mend strained relationships, so it will be interesting to see if such public self-reflection helps re-establish some amount of trust in Google."
--Techdirt

"Interesting to see that they are debating 'reversing course' - I'd like to hear more about that. Maybe it has to do with the fact that for all the compromises, google.com and gmail are still often blocked in most parts of China."
--Peking Duck

"Did Google just admit to being evil?"
--The Zero Point

 

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