Google Might Not Be Sorely Missed in China
It certainly did sound dramatic, the whole idea that execs at Google were throwing down the virtual gauntlet and threatening to pull out of China after clashing with the government over censorship, but it turns out that there hasn’t exactly been an uproar among the Chinese about the possibility of losing Google’s services. –KA
WAIT, BEFORE YOU GO…
The online giant’s threat to pull out of China over censorship has drawn little reaction among the country’s 384 million Internet users. No flood of complaints to China’s consumer rights agency, like the tens of thousands received in one day when the online fantasy game “World of Warcraft” was yanked last year because of a bureaucratic turf battle. Nor has there been the type of fury that saw 32,000 indignant gamers participate in an online chat session on the “World of Warcraft.”
“If Google leaves China, we’ll lose one search engine. But we still have other choices,” said 28-year-old Deng Zhiluo, who works in marketing in Beijing. He said while Google’s search results are more “international,” most of what he wants can be found on Chinese competitor Baidu. “For locals, Baidu is enough.”
The indifference of many Chinese points to a telling challenge for Google in the world’s most populous Internet market. The Chinese Internet world is youthful, with people under 30 making up 61.5 percent of the online population, and Google’s cause isn’t generating popular support among China’s wired teens and 20-somethings.
If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface. We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.
Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.