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Self-Censorship between Google and China

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Do you think that Google should have entered China and engaged in self-censorship, given the company's long-standing mantra 'Don't be evil'? Is it better to engage in self-censorship than have the government censor for you?

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Solution Summary

Search engines use algorithms and equations to produce end user results. Google has played such a large part in the advances of accessing information; to neutralize or censor these search results has sparked controversy over China's laws as a violation of human rights issues.

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Google versus China

Internet Search Neutrality

Search engines use algorithms and equations to produce end user results. Google has played such a large part in the advances of accessing information; to neutralize or censor these search results has sparked controversy over China's laws as a violation of human rights issues.

In late 2009, Google made a stance to stop censoring its Chinese search engine. "Google cited a major instance of hacking abuse in announcing its policy change" (Washington Post, 2010, para. 2). Then in March 2010, Google decided to shut down its search engine in China (Cramer & Hope, 2010). With the publicity that surrounds Google's decision; other western companies are questioning whether the censorship should be tolerated. China's internet policy is to eliminate free speech and virtual free assembly. Some countries believe that China is trying to turn its views on the Internet into a weapon that can be used against democrats and democratic societies (Washington Post, 2010).

Until now, Western companies and governments have not challenged Beijing's policies; however, Google's action also challenges the Obama administration, which has been slow to embrace the cause of Internet freedom. Google's stance believes this censorship should be a trade issue as well as a ...

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