So, Google has made big statement.
Google has been cyber attack, which they assumed that Chinese government is the attacker. This is because numbers of accounts of human rights activists’ accounts were cracked in China and it is obvious only government would have power to authorize that. Perhaps this triggered Google to re consider of operation in China and came up with their final decision. So far Google stated that they would start discuss with Chinese government in terms of operating google.cn as uncensored version within Chinese legal framework. Otherwise they would shut down the google.cn and withdraw Google office in Beijing.
Already so many discussions are going on over the web concerning Google leave China. Through Twitter, some people are glad to see Google is taking firm principle rather than market opportunity, on the other hand some argue that Google do not know how to work with China. Some even said, Google ex-CEO, Lee Kai-Fu, leaving company and country couple of month ago makes sense now and Google have already been discussing about this issue from back then. (Which makes obvious, these kinds of sensitive statements can not really be made over night.)
My personal view is that Google does not wish to operate in China anymore. There is no way Chinese government would negotiate with this issue. If this go through as Google wants, Chinese governments probably need to deal with all the other websites that have been blocked in China such as Facebook, Twitter and Youtube e.t.c. In addition, Google’s approach using open statement even before giving hint to CN govt (perhaps they did, I can not be so sure) makes even more difficult for CN govt to open to negotiation. It is just not polite according to Asian culture and taken as an initiating war
If Google was trying to teach a lesson to Chinese government by setting principle of freedom of speech, they choose the unwise way or more to say, too aggressive way. My expectation of CN govt’s reaction towards Google would be: “We will teach you a lesson, you don’t mess with China. We have our rule and you follow if you want to work/live in China” And by doing this, CN govt would even take a chance to show to the world how powerful China is by taking Google as an example. I am pretty sure.
When I shared this news with my Chinese friends they were really sad. The moment they heard news, they assumed that Google would be dead in a matter of time in China. They were pretty sure that there is no way CN govt would allow Google to have uncensored website. They also mention that they hate to sue Baido (Chinese search engine) because its search results are not from frequency of viewed but according to how much money the site has invested in.
Chinese people seems bit disappointed to lose their option of choosing search engine, but surprisingly not THAT disturbed to accept the news. I guess they are used to with all these blocking and censoring websites by now. (This is opinions from my personal friends. No mean to generalize whole Chinese people’s view)
According to China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) data, the current number of Internet users in China has surpassed the U.S. total population. If Google leaves, they surely lose not only big market share but also any future potential business with China. Google can gain support from all the other world democratic supports but at the same time creating giant enemy, which is already influencing world and seem to become leading nation.
Now I am at the point of deciding whether I should forward all my g-mail to other e-mail accounts before site is gone. Every time I get access to internet, I start to worry if the site is already blocked. I give applause for Google to stand on Principle and put it into an action. However as a Google user in China, I wish their political approach should have been better if they really wanted negotiation. It sounds they are abandoning Chinese customers.