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Should Google Censor Their Search Results In Order To Operate In China?
Complying with domestic censorship in order to enter China represents the abandonment of Google's core principles.
Google stopped working with the Pentagon on
. This was because employees had ethical concerns about assisting the US military. It would therefore be principally inconsistent if Google cooperated with the Chinese government.
Global Network Initiative
(GNI) is an organisation whose members are committed to preventing states from censoring the internet. Google is a member of this organisation. Launching a search engine in China is not compatible with the principles of the GNI.
Google left China due to it's
on human rights activists. Re-entering China shows that Google no longer views this as an issue.
This would hurt Google's status as one of the most socially responsible companies in the world.
Complying with Chinese censorship laws in order to enter the market can only be justified by the
motivation to do so.
Over a thousand Google employees signed a
letter of protest
against Google's plan which, they believe, goes against Google's ethics.
One of Google's core
is to make information free and accessible for all. Agreeing to censorship abandons this principle.
, Google pulled out of China. Re-entering now demonstrates a U-turn, and an abandonment of the principles that the company stood for then.
Google is not under any obligation to dogmatically adhere to previous statements made by its executives. If previous statements no longer represent what is best for the company or its consumers it should be willing to abandon some of its 'core principles.'
declares that the company’s goal is to bring information to as many people as possible. Operating in China allows it to reach more people.