Has Google gained a conscience?
Tank Man — This famous photo, taken on 5 June 1989 by photographer Jeff Widener, shows the PLA's advancing tanks halting for an unknown man near Tiananmen Square.
A while back lots of people complained when Google caved in to Chinese pressure and began systematic censoring of political information on Google.cn (the example most often used was image searches for "Tianamen Square" which allover the world, except in China, showed most prominently a lonely activist facing down a tank - in China only innocuous tourist photos.
At last thanks to "someone" attempting to unearth information (in part from their Gmail accounts) about Chinese political activists Google has got a conscience and is changing its policy. As a result the Google blog says
We have decided we are no longer willing to continue censoring our results on Google.cn, and so over the next few weeks we will be discussing with the Chinese government the basis on which we could operate an unfiltered search engine within the law, if at all. We recognize that this may well mean having to shut down Google.cn, and potentially our offices in China.
A moderately large step for a corporation, a giant leap for humanity!
Labels: culture, internet, politics