Google’s Chinese Censorship “Absolutely The Right Move,” Says CEO Schmidt

Wow. Google’s apparently not feeling bad about censoring for China anymore.
When it happened,
there was all that hand-wringing about balancing a

compromised mission
versus not being there at all. Google even created an
evil scale to
decide just how bad censoring would be. Now along with news of Google’s
new Chinese name,
Google Blogoscoped
points to
an Associated Press article
where Google CEO Eric Schmidt is quoted as saying the decision was "absolutely
the right one."

Absolutely. Contrast that against some of these past statements:

We aren’t happy about what we had to do this week, and we hope that over
time everyone in the world will come to enjoy full access to information.

That was from the official Google Blog
statement
on the move. How about

this
from Schmidt himself, back in January:

We concluded that although we weren’t wild about the restrictions, it was
even worse to not try to serve those users at all.

With respect, the decision Google made is absolutely not the absolute right
one. It was one the company itself admits was riddled with compromise and a move
it’s not entirely comfortable with. Saying that Google made "absolutely" the
right move is about as bad as still saying one of the mottos is "Don’t Be Evil."
It suggest that anyone who questions their decision is absolutely wrong, because
Google and Google alone knows the absolutely right answer. They don’t. They
simply know an answer they believe meets their circumstances. It’s not
absolutely right — it’s just what they’ve decided is right for them to do.

Schmidt also said it would be "arrogant" to walk into a country and tell it
how to operate. Gosh, Google didn’t feel too arrogant
about telling
the US government where to go when it demanded search log data. It doesn’t feel
arrogant having a
lobbying
firm to fight for its interests, such as ironically getting the US
government off its back about censoring for China.

Is there some set time period that has to expire for you to earn money within
a country before you feel like you can question or influence the laws there? If
so, Schmidt didn’t outline that. For China, he said they’ve done no lobbying at
all for rules to change. But he pointed out they’ve not tried to get other laws
changed elsewhere.

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