Google is Taking Its Virtue Back

Google’s “A new approach to China” announcement is the break news today. My first reaction is “will all stuff of Google China be relocated to US?”, which is a little bit weird, probably because friends talked about “escaping from 贵国” often these days.

Then I read the official blog post carefully and got some comments on it:

  • The posts starts with describing the cyber attack, seriously. With “at least twenty other companies” and “relevant US authorities”, this sounds like a real threatening statement. I even doubt there will be the 3rd World War, online.
  • Google mentioned their “investigation” several times. It seems they still have plenty of cards to play.
  • From my point of view, it isn’t necessary to point out the GMail accounts being hacked are China human rights activists’. This sounds like a small trick to attract western media and people’s attention.
  • Not only security and human rights, but also freedom of speech. In my mind this is the POINT. No matter Google’s retreat is more for business value or for morals, if it claims this and does pull out, I will applause.
  • Google said it will “discussing with the Chinese government”. I really doubt if it can find the actual person to talk with, which would be from the most famous, most powerful but no-one-has-ever-seen “relevant departments(有关部门)”.
  • At the end of the post, Google claimed this decision was made “without the knowledge or involvement of our employees in China”. This is an interesting point. Is it trying to help employees be clear from being bothered by China gov? However China gov definitely won’t care about this line… So is it trying to make something clear to US gov?…

I also read an article from TechCrunch which is insightful in my opinion. One of the points in it is “Google is ready to burn bridges”. Because by throwing out such a blog post, Google doesn’t show any attitude to negotiate to China gov in fact. Google is not acting on impulse and must aware of it. So this article is just buying affection tendency from the rest of world, and giving China gov a slap. However, I wonder if Google China, and its stuff, will really be “thrown under the bus” as the article predicted.

Google is not a charity organization, and it will follow the instinct of a company, to pursue the maximum value. The question is how much different things worth in Google’s eyes. Giving up biz in China may reduce around 600 million of Google’s revenue. How much does it worth to give up conscience and help China gov to strengthen controlling? How much does it worth to stain Google’s reputation and keep good programmers who don’t want to be “evil” away? How much does it worth to waste best people’s talent on censorship shit and flattering god-damned gov suckers?

Anyway, today is memorable, 2010.01.13. Goodbye Google. I respect your efforts here and wish you the best out of China.

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