Google Comes Back To China

Despite all the protests made by Google, they have decided to resume business with the Chinese government. As you may recall China discontinued the use of the popular search engine service after Google complained about being censored. It was a nonsense complaint given that Google signed on to the censorship as a part of their agreement to do business in China. Once the situation began to heat up, Google accused the Chinese government of hacking their service. A claim that has yet to be backed up by any evidence. Normally I would have believed such a claim, China has taken such actions. However given the lack of evidence and the timing of the claim, I’m incline to disbelieve it.

The timing of the incident could not have been anymore continent. This accusation of agreed to censorship and supposed hacking came as the US was accusing China of all sorts of wrong doing as the economic situation between them heated up. The move was seen by many as being politically motivated at the behest of Hillary Clinton who was the main political force on it at the time.

All of which now has proven to be essentially useless considering Google has resumed its service where the censorship still remains.

However I think this is an important to point out exactly what has happened in this situation and how China has actually won this little battle. It was of course expected that China would not back down to criticisms of its censorship, that was a complete given. After Google let loose the crocodile tears for censorship (after having previously agreed to them), they made all their righteous indignation speeches but eventually returned to do business. Now however they are reported to be making less money than they did under the previous agreement. The exact amount is not known as of this broadcast, but it is rumoured to be much less.

This has a two fold benefit to China. They save face (which is very important in China) making them look strong and they managed to hang on to the service using them in the end. This makes it appear as though Google came crawling back to China asking for forgiveness. Which is not far from the truth, after all Google does want their money. (This may be related to Google’s 30% drop in stock price this year). Second it saves China from having to create an alternative to the search engine. Possibly saving them all kinds of research and development money and resources.

In the end, really China won out in this situation. Essentially all for no benefit to Google.