Eli Sanders on Yahoo/MS/Google/Cisco’s China Problem

When U,S, Tech Companies Cave to Chinese Censors, Who’s Really to Blame?

Danish cartoons was subsiding, a Congressional committee in D.C. last
week was shining a spotlight on another collision of censorious
tendencies and demands for free speech. This time the setting was the
Far East, not the Middle East, but the reaction in the U.S. was the
same: outrage.


Already, according to the New York Times, there are 13 million bloggers in China. This is but one of many indications that the Chinese government is playing a losing game as it tries to enlist American companies in its censorship campaign. The American companies know this, even if the Chinese government doesn’t yet, which is why they want to stay. The free exchange of ideas is a growth market in China.


Plus, as the companies and others have pointed out, there is a bit of hypocrisy at play among the angered Congressional leaders. If they think doing business with China so unconscionably supports a regime that violates American free-speech values, why have they allowed the U.S. government to grant China "most favored nation" trading status, encouraging American companies to do business there in the first place?

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