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Posts Tagged ‘Google’

Google alters name of disputed South China Sea reef

July 15th, 2015 2 comments

So it’s official folks.  Google has altered the name of of a disputed South China Sea reef on its map from Huangyan Island to Scarborough Shoal.  Since Google says so, it must be so.  Has to be so. Read more…

Why did China ban Google? And why do the West try to shut down the Confucian Institute?

January 1st, 2015 18 comments

The common western narrative is that China’s government is oppressive and fear that its citizens would discover freedom and democracy through those websites. On the social-economic level, they imply that China’s leadership lack confidence when dealing with the western world. The underlying message is that that those rich multi-billion corporations are somehow purveyor of freedom and democracy. Google even used “Don’t be evil” as its formal corporate motto. Read more…

Internet Freedom vs NSA Dragnet

July 5th, 2013 14 comments

Have you ever wondered how a map would look like if it showed Internet freedom versus the NSA dragnet recently revealed by Edward Snowden? Well, it would look like the following map.  Click to have a look first and then come back to this post.

Facebook-Map - adjusted for population density (click to enlarge)

Facebook-Map – adjusted for population density (click to enlarge)


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Baidu, Tencent, Google, and Apple among The World’s Most Innovative Companies

September 17th, 2012 16 comments

Is Apple one of the most innovative companies in the world? Most people would think so (so-so iPhone 5 specs notwithstanding). Google? Ditto. Baidu? Sure. Tencent? You know jack about Chinese companies if you don’t think so. All these companies made the recently published Forbes’ “The World’s Most Innovative Companies.” The authors of this study, Jeff Dyer and Hal Gregersen, based the rankings on what they called, innovative premium, which they detailed in their book, “The Innovator’s DNA” (co-authored with Harvard Business School professor Clayton Christensen). Read more…

The Euphemism of Freedom – Case Study on Google in the Aftermath of Benghazi

September 14th, 2012 54 comments

Whenever a for-profit – or even non-profit – organization professes to do good, to be a society’s guardian – as Google has – I feel queasy. It’s not that I think Google (or more generally corporations, NGOs, charities, even churches) is inherently evil.  It’s just that no non-government entity owes society at large a fiduciary duty 1 per se, as governments do.

Take as a case study Google – that self professed guardian of Freedom.

In the aftermath of the recent violence in Benghazi, Google has taken itself to task to block access to inflammatory videos that may have caused the violence.

According to the New York Times: Read more…

Notes:

  1. The purpose (legal duty even) of a corporation is to make money for its shareholders. The obligation of non-profits is to their sponsors and donors … and incestuously to itself. The duty of churches is – well if you are pious – to God, although often a God who cares only for a segment of society, who may be so hateful of the rest as to condemn them all to eternities of hell.

Google’s Project Glass

June 27th, 2012 2 comments

The following is a live demo of Google’s Project Glass at the Moscone Center in San Francisco earlier today, with Google co-founder Sergey Brin hosting. (Click here for another demo showing how Google services are integrated.) It’s essentially computer in a pair of glasses, able to see what you see and meshes your smartphone’s display into it. It’s not that the technology is new, but the fact that Google is bringing it to the masses and integrating with Google Hangout and other of its services that make it ground-breaking. Corporations with deep pockets can make big bets like this. Being an industry leader and having reaped so much profit gives you opportunity to invest. While we don’t like Google’s politics, as a technology and Internet services behemoth, it’s an amazing company.


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Categories: News Tags: , ,

Listen up, Syria, Google wants you invaded

February 14th, 2012 9 comments

Well, at least indirectly. Google in its exit from the Chinese market for search tried to bolster it’s “do no evil” motto by trying to demonize China’s censorship laws. We have written quite a bit about Google in the past – some directly and others indirectly (see our other  ‘Google‘-tagged articles). In this article, I would like to simply show how Google participates (willfully or not makes no difference) in this one-sided mass barrage of attacks in the Western press against Syria. Read more…

Categories: Analysis, media, Opinion Tags: ,

What Does SOPA (and PIPA) Tell us About “Freedom”?

January 21st, 2012 8 comments

As you may know, there is a heated high-profile war being waged in the U.S. now over a new bill called SOPA (“Stop Online Piracy Act” in the House) and PIPA (“Protect Intellectual Property Act” in the Senate). The bills have been temporarily put on hold, but the issues highlighted by the controversies will not go away.

The purpose of the bills is to enable IP owners to target foreign-based websites from selling pirated movies, music and other products in the U.S. The bills have pitted entities with high stakes in IP such as Hollywood studios and drug companies against tech companies that will be target of any new law such as Google and Wikipedia. Earlier this week, the latter staged various forms of high-profile blackouts, with Chris Dodd of the Motion Picture Association of America responding accusing the tactics as Read more…

Biggest-ever series of cyber attacks uncovered

August 3rd, 2011 32 comments

News of the uncovering of the “biggest-ever” series of cyber attacks by McAfee seems to be spreading through the media like wildfire.  In thisWashington Post article, it is reported:

A leading computer security firm has used logs produced by a single server to trace the hacking of more than 70 corporations and government organizations over many months, and experts familiar with the analysis say the snooping probably originated in China.

Among the targets were the Hong Kong and New York offices of the Associated Press, where unsuspecting reporters working on China issues clicked on infected links in e-mail, the experts said. Read more…

Baidu and Microsoft teams up against Google and a view on censorship

July 5th, 2011 No comments

Some might wonder how is it possible that Google still commands about 15-20% search market share in China despite its google.cn service essentially shut down there. The reason is because many Chinese netizens, 450 million and growing, are still using google.com for English language searches. Actually, according to Analysys International, a Beijing market research firm, Google enjoys 19.2% in revenue share in China versus Baidu’s 75.8%. For this reason, Baidu and Microsoft have just announced combining efforts to take on Google on that market segment.
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Categories: Analysis, economy, Opinion Tags: , , ,

Google’s empty allegations, again, but what next?

June 7th, 2011 9 comments

Students learning to become hairdressers at Lanxiang Vocational School in Jinan

Google has been up to making empty allegations against China since it decided to withdraw last year. In its latest salvo, it accused the Chinese government of a phishing attack on Gmail accounts. As predicted, such allegations are spreading like wild fire in the Western media. In fact, the innuendos are narrated into facts, and it is always amazing to see how this propaganda machinery works.

It claimed the phishing attacks “appears to originate from Jinan, China.” The Lanxiang Vocations School which was at the center of Google’s last year claim of Gmail attacks is also in Jinan. Apparently, the hairdressing students at Lanxiang no longer find this spotlight funny.

Did Google offer any more facts than last time? No. But, seriously, let’s look at some real ones. In this respected business and venture capital journal, Venture Beat, Matt Marshall tells us: Read more…

Russia Today, Juliane Assange on Google, Facebook, Guardian, The New York Times, and Media

May 6th, 2011 11 comments

Regardless of your personal views about Wikileaks exposing secret U.S. documents, you will find this exclusive interview by Russia Today of Juliane Assange fascinating. He also weighs in on Google, Facebook, the Guardian, the New York Times, and media in general.

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South Korea Police raids Google Seoul office

May 3rd, 2011 3 comments

Unlike what most Americans believe, the world outside the U.S. is getting increasingly tiresome of Google’s practices. Xinhua has just reported Google’s Seoul office raided by police. This was due to suspicion of Google’s AdMob unit illegally collecting private mobile user information. Google made many headlines in their confrontation with the Chinese government. See Allen’s article, “Google vs. China – Good vs. Evil?”
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Categories: Analysis, News, Opinion Tags:

Gmail, respect jurisdiction or accept blockage

April 12th, 2011 15 comments

Over the past week and a half, I have been accessing my Gmail account from within China at various places.  Since Google insinuated the service being interfered with by the Chinese government, I thought I report first hand what I experienced.  While in Guilin, I only could connect couple of times in hotels without resorting to using VPN.  The Gmail’s login doesn’t show up or following entering username and password, the connection times out.  While at a relative’s home, access to Gmail was without any problem. While in Beijing, I have not had any problems either.

While a user of Gmail, I still honestly feel the Chinese government should block Gmail if Google does not respect China’s jurisdiction over users from within Chinese borders when using the service. Let’s say, there are two terrorists plotting to blow up some building or bridge in China. They used Gmail to coordinate their attack. If Google does not comply with Chinese courts in turning over information on these terrorists, then I think it is very appropriate for the Chinese government to block the service from within China altogether.
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Categories: Opinion, technology Tags: ,

The New York Times Propaganda: “Vast Hacking by a China Fearful of the Web”

December 7th, 2010 44 comments

On December 4, 2010, the New York Times published this article, “Vast Hacking by a China Fearful of the Web.” Well, if you actually spend just a little bit of time looking for facts supporting what the headline claims, you will not be surprised this is a tactic often employed by the U.S. media to smear other countries. There is no fact supporting the headline. They are all insinuations.

My retorts may come across to some as rants, because frankly, I think that’s all this article deserves. You will realize this article is really not trying to honestly make a case for the headline. It presumes the readers have already bought into it. This is a thinly veiled propaganda piece. Sadly, when it comes to China in the U.S. media, this is what we see. As this same propaganda is parroted throughout America, I feel compelled to chime in. America is better without it, because Americans are torn in all directions. She needs to reign in the budget deficit and reinvigorate herself to be more competitive.
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EU Investigates Google

November 30th, 2010 1 comment

The EU begins officially to investigate Google for alleged anti-competitive practices. According to this aljazeera report,

European Union regulators are to investigate whether Google has abused its dominant position in the online search market in what will be the first major inquiry into the internet giant’s business practices.

The competition watchdogs formally announced their investigation on Tuesday after complaints by rivals that Google gave their services “unfavourable treatment” in unpaid and sponsored search results.

Authorities will investigate whether Google’s services are being given preferential placement in search engine results, some of which may lead to consumer spending.

One of the complainants, British search site Foundem, said in a that its revenue “pales next to the hundreds of billions of dollars of other companies’ revenues that Google controls indirectly through its search results and sponsored links”.

French legal search engine ejustice.fr and Microsoft-owned shopping site Ciao also lodged complaints against Google with the EU commission in February. Read more…

YouTube records reportedly seized by Japanese prosecutors over leaked video

November 9th, 2010 2 comments

As written previously, “Japanese Coast Guard Diaoyutai or Senkaku Video Leaked,” the Japanese government is really upset over the partially leaked video. Japan Times has an article out on YouTube Japan’s records reportedly seized by Japanese prosecutors – “Coast guard probed over video leak; YouTube info reportedly seized.”

Separately Tuesday, prosecutors reportedly seized records from the operator of the video-sharing site YouTube to try to determine how the footage was posted online.

Further details of the records were not immediately known Tuesday evening.

YouTube is a subsidiary of Google Inc. of the U.S.

Although the Google camp has expressed willingness to cooperate with the investigation, the prosecutors believe it would be difficult for the search site to voluntarily submit user information, given its policy of keeping such data secret, the sources said.

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Eric Schmidt of Google discussing China with Charlie Rose

October 1st, 2010 1 comment

Google CEO, Eric Schmidt, was recently on Charlie Rose talking about the China censorship issue. As you recall, Google threatened to pull out of the Mainland China market insinuating Chinese government backed hacking (no evidence to date) and threatening non-compliance with Chinese censorship laws. When China didn’t budge, Google shut down the search service on google.cn. Instead, on google.cn, there is a fake search box, and when a user clicks, it redirects the user to the Hong Kong google.com.hk site. According to this AP article, since then, Google dropped in revenue search share in China from 30.9% to 24.2% with bulk of the loss added to Baidu’s gain. Remember, this is revenue share, and given Google’s reach for the generally more English language capable Chinese population and Google’s over-all better monitization, Google’s user share within China is likely in the low teens or single digit percentage wise (my opinion).

We have written about the PR stunt Google pulled earlier in the year. (See Allen’s debunk: “Google vs. China – Good vs. Evil?“) It has been almost a year, and it is interesting to see Google’s current positioning on the issue. For your reference, below is a snippet of the Charlie Rose program transcript.
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According to Google, Diaoyutai belongs to Japan!

September 26th, 2010 6 comments

Is Google siding with Japan’s claims at the expense of China? Search for “Diaoyutai” or the Chinese character equivalent, “钓鱼台群岛,” you’ll not be able to find the disputed islands. Circled in red below is where a pin should be placed. Nothing shows up.

"Diaoyutai" or "钓鱼台群岛" not labeled on disputed islands between China and Japan.

Instead, if you search for “Senkaku-shoto,” Google Maps takes you to the disputed islands. They are labeled with Japanese names. Same effect if you explore that part of the world without the keyword search.  See snapshot below:
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As Yelp Looks to Stop Extorting Money from Business Owners, will Google Follow Suit?

May 8th, 2010 7 comments

Yelp has been the target of lawsuits recently.  For example, according to this WSJ report:

Nine small businesses have joined a lawsuit accusing local business review start-up Yelp Inc. of extortion and fraudulent business practices.

The newest plaintiffs were officially added Tuesday in an amended complaint filed by two law firms…. The new plaintiffs include a Chicago bakery, a Washington, D.C., restaurant and a California furniture store, among others.

The original plaintiff in the putative class action suit, a veterinary hospital in Long Beach, Calif., said it had asked Yelp to remove a negative consumer review that violated Yelp’s site guidelines. According to the complaint, San Francisco-based Yelp initially removed the review but it reappeared and Yelp later declined to remove it and other negative reviews. The suit alleges that Yelp’s sales representatives repeatedly contacted the hospital offering to hide any negative reviews if it bought advertising from Yelp.

In the amended complaint, the owner of Chicago’s Bleeding Heart Bakery alleged that Yelp offered in exchange for a paid sponsorship to push any bad reviews to the end of the bakery’s listings on Yelp’s site. The bakery owner alleged that one of Yelp’s sales representatives said they would personally remove reviews identified by the owner as “bogus.”

“Yelp’s practices are extortionate and especially harmful to small businesses, such as our clients, who are particularly vulnerable to reviews posted on the site,” said Jared H. Beck, co-managing partner of Beck & Lee, referring to the original plaintiff and the nine new ones.

Yelp denied any wrongdoing and said that it reviewed the amended complaint and still believes the suit is without merit. “The allegations stem from confusion over how our review filter works to protect consumers from fake, or shill, reviews and businesses from malicious reviews from competitors,” said Vince Sollitto, Yelp’s vice president of communications. Read more…

What Should Be Done with Google’s IP in China?

March 31st, 2010 15 comments

Google search may have left China, but does Google owe responsibilities to the people of a place it has recently left?

This is not an academic question, especially since many believe that Google’s exit will hurt average people in China. According to this CNN article,

Businesses and universities could be substantially affected by the departure of Google from China.

Most of the country’s nearly 400 million Internet users may not be affected by the closure. But academics, university students and other researchers rely heavily on Google’s search services to access information not available through Chinese search engines, like Baidu.com, China’s most popular search portal. Small businesses that depend on Google applications such as Google Docs and Gmail may also suffer, analysts said.

A recent survey of more than 700 Chinese scientists conducted by the journal Nature found that 80 percent regularly use Google to search for academic papers while 60 percent said they use the site to stay on top of new research. Read more…

Google shuts down google.cn and routing to google.com.hk

March 22nd, 2010 16 comments

Google has just officially announced discontinuing google.cn and routing web requests to google.com.hk. It has proclaimed serving uncensored results from Hong Kong “entirely legal and will meaningfully increase access to information for people in China.” Legally, it is probably true, but the Chinese government might take steps to block google.com.hk for Mainland users, as China has done with some other Google services. Google has also announced a tracking web page to show what Google services are blocked within China.
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What does “Internet Censorship” Mean?

March 16th, 2010 16 comments

As Google prepares potentially for a highly politicized exist of China, we’ll hear a lot more accusations on how closed China’s Internet is.  The presumption of Google’s move would be that China’s Internet is closed while the rest of the world (in which Google still does business) is open.

Of course, anyone who has even remote experience with China’s internet (and Chinese society for that matter) will understand the Internet in China is amongst the most dynamic in the world, as well as amongst the most explosive and important.

China’s Internet is not closed in the sense that has been depicted in the West. Read more…

Google Leaving China?

March 15th, 2010 No comments

According to Google’s CEO Schmidt, Google’s “negotiation” with the Chinese government over Internet censorship regulations will end “soon.” There are speculations in the tech-sphere that it looks like Google will have to leave China. According to ZDNet’s Tom Forenski, for example:

Champagne corks are undoubtedly popping in Redmond on reports that Google is planning to close its Chinese search service.

Google will try to maintain its other operations in China but this is unlikely to succeed. Any foreign business requires the approval of the Chinese government. Google has shown itself to be in opposition to the Chinese government — this is an untenable position.

This also means that Google will unlikely be able to take part in joint ventures with others in China. In early February, Reuters reported that Google is a member of a consortium led by Disney, to buy a large stake in Bus Online, a large Chinese advertising company.

It’s difficult to see how this deal will go through with Google as a member, if it is an opponent to the government.

This means Google is barred from the world’s largest and fastest growing Internet market. Read more…

(Letter from pug_ster) China-US relations at all time low?

January 31st, 2010 96 comments

About 5 months ago, Jon huntsman was interviewed by Wall Street Journal and seems positive to bring China-US relations to the ‘next level’ as mentioned in my piece here.

January was a bad month between China-US relations. First there was the google incident. Then the US announced the $6.4 billion in arms to Taiwan. Now China wants the beloved panda Tai-Shan back (I’m kidding about the Tai-Shan part.) Though the arms sales seems to be the straw that broke the camel’s back. If you go to Chinadaily’s website, there is no less than 10 articles and opinions about this spat. Read more…

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , , , ,

Google vs. China – Good vs. Evil?

January 25th, 2010 86 comments

Google’s recent drama in China has endeared itself to some human rights activists, democracy advocates, even Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.  Many have applauded Google for taking a “principled stance” against the evil empire of China.  I find such rhetoric comical. Read more…