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Sergey Surprise on China | by jurvetson
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Sergey Surprise on China

A surprise guest at TED today, Sergey spoke openly about Google’s new posture with China. Just before him was a presentation on the Chinese GhostNet global spying network, and Brin said Google was spear-phished in a similar way as the Dalai Lama.

 

Sergey Brin:

 

"Things started going downhill, especially after the Olympics. There’s been a lot more blocking going on since then. Also our other sites, YouTube and whatnot, have been blocked. So the situation really took a turn for the worse."

 

“We have made a statement of intent. We intend to stop censoring, and if we can do that, within the confines of Chinese policy, we’d love to continue Google.cn and our operations there. And if we cannot, then we’ll do as much as we can, but we don’t want to run a service that’s politically censored. I’m not talking about things like porn and gambling. Political censorship.”

 

“Our focus has been what’s best for the Chinese people. It’s not about our particular revenue or profit"

 

“I don’t think the question of whether this is the Chinese government is that important. I think that the Chinese government has tens of millions of people in it. If you look at the army and the associated army, that’s larger than many countries. So even if there were a Chinese government agent behind it, it might represent a fragment of policy. I think that there are many people there who have different views.”

 

I began to wonder if the same could be said of Google. Since this was impromptu and unscripted, and a delicate corporate PR subject to say the least, I wonder if all of Google management is of the same mind, here and in China.

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Taken on February 12, 2010