Tuesday, March 28, 2006

AP: Yahoo co-founder defends support for 'Great Firewall of China'

According to the AP: Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang defended the Internet search engine's cooperation with Chinese censorship of the Web, saying it was necessary to reach out to new users. ... "In places like China and other places that have different political regimes I think you'll see them trying to react and potentially regulate these kinds of activities. ... But our observation is that it is inevitable that things will become more open and free flowing".

I am troubled that American companies and particularly an American of Chinese ancestry would take such a position. As a democracy we should not make these types of deals with regimes that have no respect for basic freedoms and human rights. Censorship and ratting out activists to the Communist regime is just un-American. Because of the actions of Yang and other CEOs, unwilling to make a stand on this issue, there are activists in Chinese prisons. That is just shamefull.

Additionally, Yahoo and other companies should not be deciding on a strategy in dealing with these issues; our government should. American technology companies should be prevented, by law, from conspiring with the Chinese government as well as other regimes from censoring information.

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