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Author Topic: Do no more evil than strictly necessary
Callipygous
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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 10:34      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Well gang what do you think?

1. Could Google have stayed out of China?

2. China has shown that it is possible to censor the internet. Will this spread? Should it?

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"Knowledge is Power. France is Bacon" - Milton

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Ugurcan

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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 11:23      Profile for Ugurcan   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
1) I'm not very certain, but in China they have baidu.com which is more popular than google. China is a great market, and google wants to expand it's share.

2) I don't think that it is possible to censor the internet. Internet is designed for not being blocked. You may plug one hole but the information will flow from another. Even if they use some type of content filtering I think it is still possible to override it.

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"Constants aren't, Variables won't..."

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Grummash

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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 12:16      Profile for Grummash     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
1) Yes, they could have stayed out of China, but should they? From a business point of view, China is a market, and Google need to compete, so you could suggest that they had no choice. Furthermore, it is easier to influence situations towards positive change if you have a bit of "weight" to throw around. So perhaps Google needs to stay in front of the competition in order to be big enough to try and change things.

2) Attempts at internet censorship will spread, but hopefully they will be less effective. Counter-measures will emerge because people have had over 20 years to get used to the idea that unlimited information is available on demand.

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...and yet, across the gulf of space, minds immeasurably superior to ours regarded this earth with envious eyes...

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 12:34      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Google's stock has been in decline,so my guess is, in order to stay in the game, they pretty much had to go into China. THey're also fighting a subpoena in the US to reveal search statistics, for whatever that's worth.

As far as internet censorship goes, I'm not sure how far it can spread. Would people who live in democracies with free speech tolerate it?

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
- The Decemberists

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Sxeptomaniac

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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 12:37      Profile for Sxeptomaniac   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Ugurcan:
I don't think that it is possible to censor the internet. Internet is designed for not being blocked. You may plug one hole but the information will flow from another. Even if they use some type of content filtering I think it is still possible to override it.

Here's a rough idea of how it's happening:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_censorship_in_mainland_China

If the Chinese government can just make it difficult to access information that doesn't coincide with their propaganda, then it helps them keep people from accidentally stumbling onto the truth. Then they can focus on people who are already dissidents. They've already jailed quite a few people for expressing discontent on internet forums and chat rooms: http://web.amnesty.org/library/index/engasa170012004

Now that's a government that worries me at times.

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Let's pray that the human race never escapes from Earth to spread its iniquity elsewhere. - C. S. Lewis

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Demosthenes
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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 13:11      Profile for Demosthenes     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Xanthine:
As far as internet censorship goes, I'm not sure how far it can spread. Would people who live in democracies with free speech tolerate it?

Well, so far, the US has tolerated a war based on lies about WMDs, marijuana continuing to be illegal, failure to give the GBLT community their rights, miserable prison systems, Carnivore, tapped public payphones, the no-fly list, government bribery from Exxon/Mobil that prevent us from researching clean-burning fuel (i.e. hydrogen crystals), the unending erosion of Roe v. Wade, failure to develop cures for cancer and AIDS because the drug companies make more money off treatment than they would from a cure, the FDA allowing known carcinogens into our meat to make it "look fresher," thousands of instances of illegal search and seizure, and imprisonment without trial at Guantanamo Bay.

Call me a conspiracy theorist if you will, but I'd say we're not so far behind China here.

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Callipygous
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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 18:03      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
One of the best things about the US and your constitution is the aggressive attitude to almost anything that could be deemed an attack on freedom of speech. I hope this keeps the internet free, but so many of what I used to consider fundamental rights, such as the freedom from imprisonment without trial, have been whittled away in the name of this so called war against terror, that I wonder. The US government's request for the personal data from Google and the other search engines could be viewed as the beginning of the transformation of the internet into a means of monitoring the individual citizen, not unlike "1984"

Of course we are always told that we have nothing to fear unless we are terrorists, but I cannot offhand think of any power granted to the state or the police that is not eventually abused.

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"Knowledge is Power. France is Bacon" - Milton

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Serenak

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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 18:10      Profile for Serenak     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
For evil to prosper it needs only for good people to do nothing... or words to that effect.

Defend your freedoms vigorously people - many of our forebears had to fight long and hard to obtain them!

And watch out for those sneaky "you have nothing to fear from this" erosions... they are the nasty ones.

[Frown]

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"So if you want my address - it's No. 1 at the end of the bar, where I sit with the broken angels, clutching at straws and nursing my scars..."

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Sxeptomaniac

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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 18:56      Profile for Sxeptomaniac   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I personally find it a little odd that every time an act by the US government is interpreted as breaching personal freedoms (correctly or otherwise), it's on the front of all the papers. Meanwhile, the People's Republic of China is quietly perfecting their methods of control over their people, and few seem to care. I'm not talking about less coverage of the US government, but more of the rest of the world.

When Demosthenes has to worry about being arrested for her criticism of the government, then maybe we're somewhere close to China. As is stands, we're still pretty far from that.

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Let's pray that the human race never escapes from Earth to spread its iniquity elsewhere. - C. S. Lewis

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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 20:22      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Sxeptomaniac:
I personally find it a little odd that every time an act by the US government is interpreted as breaching personal freedoms (correctly or otherwise), it's on the front of all the papers. Meanwhile, the People's Republic of China is quietly perfecting their methods of control over their people, and few seem to care.

Gee, it's almost as if the American people are more concerned with their own liberties than those of far-away foreigners.
Who'da thunkit ?

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If you watch 'The History Of NASA' backwards, it's about a space agency that has no manned spaceflight capability, then does low-orbit flights, then lands on the Moon.

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 20:35      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
We only get concerned if they have oil they aren't selling us. :/

China has more than a billion people and is one of the biggest (if not THE biggest) the US has. We are not going to fsck with China. We might bitch at them, but we are not going to fsck with them. Especially since I'm pretty certain they've got nukes and a long history of being a bit ruthless when they feel like they need to be.

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
- The Decemberists

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nerdwithnofriends
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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 21:02      Profile for nerdwithnofriends     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Xanthine:
We only get concerned if they have oil they aren't selling us. :/

China has more than a billion people and is one of the biggest (if not THE biggest) the US has. We are not going to fsck with China. We might bitch at them, but we are not going to fsck with them. Especially since I'm pretty certain they've got nukes and a long history of being a bit ruthless when they feel like they need to be.

They may have nukes, but remember: nobody delivers 'em like the good ol' USoA.

Still, it IS something to take into consideration.

The question is, are we willing to sacrifice economic expedience for their civil liberties? We should not have to worry about what they are doing; if it gets bad enough, they can always revolt. I personally would prefer that the US returned to an isolationist policy, and maintain the 'carry a big stick' philosophy; that way, we don't bother anybody, but we keep trouble from coming our way.

Just my two cents.

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"The Buddha, the Godhead, resides quite as comfortably in the circuits of a digital computer or the gears of a cycle transmission as he does at the top of a mountain or in the petals of a flower." - Robert M. Pirsig

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 21:11      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I'm inclined to agree with you.

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
- The Decemberists

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Erbo
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Icon 1 posted January 25, 2006 23:46            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I'm more concerned what this says about Google. After all, this is a company that has gained considerable cachet from its motto/philosophy of "Don't be evil"...and it has enjoyed a higher degree of trust than other large Internet companies (including a certain well-known entity in the state of Washington which shall remain nameless [Smile] ).

But, now that they have been shown to compromise their stance...how will this affect their perception? Will people be wondering how long it will be before Google will make another compromise with evil? Will people be wondering how many more compromises Google will make? What will that do to the level of trust they place in Google?

Or, to use an analogy, is this the incident that starts young Anakin Skywalker down the path that turns him into Darth Vader?

(Incidentally, I fully expect that, sometime within my lifetime, the United States will be at war with China. It's not something that I'm happy about; in fact, it's fscking scary. But there it is.)

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Callipygous
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Icon 1 posted January 26, 2006 02:55      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
You are right Erbo. They would say in their defence, that they have a duty to their shareholders to maximise revenue, and could not remain disengaged with the fastest growing economy in the world. I presume they would also say that that engagement gives them more opportunity to influence things for the better than they would have looking in from the outside. However I believe that does not disguise that they, with Microsoft and Yahoo, are now part of the problem there, as they help perpetuate oppression.

Their self proclaimed principles state clearly that among other things:-
quote:
You can make money without doing evil
quote:
The need for information crosses all borders
and
quote:
Democracy on the web works
It is hard to reconcile their decision with any of these statements.

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"Knowledge is Power. France is Bacon" - Milton

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SilverBlade
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Icon 1 posted January 26, 2006 09:09      Profile for SilverBlade   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Xanthine:
I'm pretty certain they've got nukes and a long history of being a bit ruthless when they feel like they need to be.

[devil wand] I am teh ev111l!!!

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http://www.silver-blade.net

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Erbo
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Icon 1 posted January 26, 2006 09:19            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Callipygous:
They would say in their defence, that they have a duty to their shareholders to maximise revenue, and could not remain disengaged with the fastest growing economy in the world. I presume they would also say that that engagement gives them more opportunity to influence things for the better than they would have looking in from the outside. However I believe that does not disguise that they, with Microsoft and Yahoo, are now part of the problem there, as they help perpetuate oppression.

I can't help but think that, if Google really and truly believed in their "don't be evil" philosophy, they would have:

A. Told the Chinese government to take their pissy little content restrictions, fold them until they're all sharp corners, and stick 'em where the sun don't shine.

B. If (when) the Chinese government declined to do so, told them, "Fine! If you're going to play games like that, we'll take our marbles and go home!"

However, you have to remember, in situations like this, what Jamie Zawinski had to say about corporations:
quote:
Corporations are not evil. That kind of anthropomorphism is inappropriate. Corporations are too stupid to be evil, only people can be that. Corporations are mechanisms. People can influence them, but by and large, corporations just follow the rules.

Bear in mind that, for a publicly-traded company, if a CEO makes a decision because it's the right thing rather than because it's the most profitable thing for the shareholders, he will lose his job, and possibly be sued into oblivion. That's the way the rules work.

Which begs the question: If it's impossible for a corporation to be evil, is it also then impossible for a corporation to be consciously "not evil," as Google claims to want to be? In other words, has their philosophy been wishful thinking from Day One? If so, then, perhaps, more fool us for buying into the rhetoric.

(Maybe it was easier for them to believe in that principle when they were the brash young upstarts, instead of the Masters of the Internet Universe and darlings of Wall Street that they've become. "Money changes everything," as Cyndi Lauper once said.)

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Demosthenes
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Icon 1 posted January 26, 2006 13:20      Profile for Demosthenes     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Sxeptomaniac:
When Demosthenes has to worry about being arrested for her criticism of the government, then maybe we're somewhere close to China.

Always. I've been worried for years.

(Remind me to tell you guys the story of how I was detained and nearly arrested on the MBTA during the Democratic National Convention...because I was carrying a folding screwdriver and a copy of "Nausea" by Jean-Paul Sartre.)

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alfrin
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Icon 1 posted January 26, 2006 19:30      Profile for alfrin     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Demosthenes:
quote:
Originally posted by Sxeptomaniac:
When Demosthenes has to worry about being arrested for her criticism of the government, then maybe we're somewhere close to China.

Always. I've been worried for years.

(Remind me to tell you guys the story of how I was detained and nearly arrested on the MBTA during the Democratic National Convention...because I was carrying a folding screwdriver and a copy of "Nausea" by Jean-Paul Sartre.)

Oh please tell.
My story isn't nearly as serious but I made the mistake of going through airport security with my USB pocket knife, not only did they take the knife without giving me a chance to mail myself but they wouldn't let me detach the USB drive which contained many essays and work I have yet to turn in. Let's just say I was less than happy.

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Art is Resistance / Resistance is Art

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted January 26, 2006 19:56      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I had my allen wrench confiscated at the airport. Otehrwise, I've had more run-ins with suspicious people outside the US than within it. In Belgium I got grilled on my book about DNA. I got my luggage searched for no apparent reason in Calgary. I got hammered by a UK customs agent on my way to Scotland because I said I'd be traveling with family.

"Where are they?"

"They should be in Edinburgh by now."

And then I had to explain that all the family members I was meeting were also Americans, and we were on separate flights because we lived in different parts of the US and therefore had different itineraries. I almost got flippant and told her that I actually had a very nice life in the US and wasn't interested in immigrating, but I didn't. Then, when coming back to the US, I made the mistake of telling the Canadian customs officer I'd flown in from Edinburgh. This was the day the G8 started, there was a lot of unrest in downtown Edinburgh (which I had visited and left two weeks before), and she freaked. So when I re-entered the US via the pre-clearance thing in Toronto I told the guy stamping my passport I'd come in from Manchester. Not exactly a lie - I had a six hour layover - but not exactly the truth either. He let me go with a nod. Didn't even ask about the two bottles of Scotch I was carrying. Phew.

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
- The Decemberists

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ASM65816
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Icon 1 posted January 27, 2006 13:56      Profile for ASM65816   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
the US has tolerated a war based on lies about WMDs
Did you know that Saddam was lining his pockets with UN humanitarian aid money? Did you know Saddam sold oil on the black market in violation of UN sanctions? Did you know that no outside observers witnessed Saddam's "destruction" of WMD, violating terms of UN resolutions? The "funny" part to me is that it seems the UN didn't think it should be biased against Saddam just because of reports that he may have killed 300,000 Iraqis. If having WMD is the only reason for UN sanctions, then why have the UN? Watch the movie "Lord of War," and you should realize that the amount of death by WMD is trivial (except for the Kurds in Iraq ... which kinda' indicates Saddam used WMD's).

quote:
... government bribery from Exxon/Mobil that prevents us from researching clean-burning fuel
Bribery has never been necessary. As long as oil is cheap and the alternative is expensive (research + replace fuel production infrastructure, including energy needed to create fuel + replace fuel distribution infrastructure + replace all petrol driven vehicles + retool auto industry for engine change), no one, including "the consumers," will support change. As an example, photovoltaic solar panels often cost thousands of dollars to install and can't produce electricity without sunlight, so the vast majority of people buy electricity for pennies per kWh. Do you power your home with solar panels?

quote:
failure to develop cures for cancer and AIDS
My personal favorite is "why isn't there a cure for obesity?" But then I think "can't obesity be prevented by modifying one's behavior?" It's incredibly difficult to stop the spread of a flu virus, but HIV/AIDS known and limited means of spreading. Stop transmission of the disease, stop the disease. Is there a particular right to prostitution and drug use that makes preventing those means of disease transmission unacceptable?

quote:
We are not going to fsck with China.
I say "all" of the big "players" harass one another. However, there's an understood rule about "not stepping over the line."

quote:
They may have nukes, but remember: nobody delivers 'em like the good ol' USoA.
1. #include sarcasm.h
Yeah, the worst part is that Japan surrendered next week. Nobody considered the rights of the people who wanted to drop bombs, who wanted to shoot people, and who wanted to be conscripted and sent to die far from home. People forget the good things about wars dragging on, like "Napalm will keep a man warm for the rest of his life." I'm glad you understand that a few extra months with war are better than the ones without.
(PS: ... and I still hate "Monday Morning Quarterbacks.")

2. If the US wanted to "deliver" nukes, the past 50 years would have been more than sufficient to do it. The term Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) isn't technically correct. For the major nuclear powers, the following deterrent is sufficient to prevent war: no great mansions, no luxury cars and superhighways, no more fine wines, and no more beautiful and busty young models.

quote:
if it gets bad enough, they can always revolt. I personally would prefer that the US returned to an isolationist policy, and maintain the 'carry a big stick' philosophy
No, "they" can't revolt (effectively) because of modern weapon systems (like the AK-47). WWI and WWII taught the US that the "big stick" policy is very expensive in lives and resources after a multinational war is triggered (note: we didn't start either war).

About future nukes: World War III will not be started by any of the countries whose leaders enjoy big mansions and babes, etc. It will be started by a country whose leaders are proudly confident that death will be glorious and bring great rewards (like lots of virgins).

Next, Orwell's 1984 will become reality. First, the "three countries" (read "major nuke powers") will be allies and eliminate the "opposing" population of the earth (using the fewest nukes possible). In addition, expect AIDS and other diseases to "disappear" (not as a result of medicine). Finally, the "three countries" declare "eternal war" on each other. However ... they never use nukes on each other, their borders never change, no one ever returns from "the war" (except for propaganda purposes), and the "cost" of billion dollar weapons doesn't bankrupt the countries. The "leaders" all enjoy great mansions, luxury cars and superhighways, fine wines, and beautiful, busty young models. In spite of "the war," leaders on vacation may find themselves in the company of "enemy" leaders. They'll talk business, have an extravagant meal together, and perhaps exchange young women.

... then again, George O. could have been completely wrong.....

Bottom Line: Leaders in the industrial nations like cool stuff and luxuries; therefore, they protect the world economy that provides their goodies. Tyrants (that are content with the power to enslave "the masses") and religious fanatics (who consider the material world meaningless when compared to "heaven") are quite happy with the prospect of 99% of the earth being a dead and poisoned wasteland.

Back on topic: Lack of trade tends to be worse than trade. Without trade, using "economic pressure" to bring about (nonviolent) change is not possible. The other means of "encouraging" change in foreign powers typically include much more "collateral damage." Also, trade (ideally) tends to occur for the benefit of all involved parties.

As for evil: If everyone would become Buddhist forestry service agents (with hobbies like computer programming, medical research, or carpentry), everything would be good. (But I'm sure that someone will claim it's an impractical solution.)

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Once a proud programmer of Apple II's, he now spends his days and nights in cheap dives fraternizing with exotic dancers....

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted January 27, 2006 15:35      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Y'know, the ex post facto justifications for the Iraq war remind me of conversations I had with an ex while he was in his stalk and hound phase. I had a letter in which he outlined his reasons for dumping me, yet every damn time we talked his story/excuses would change. It got real confusing after a while, so I just stuck to what was written in the letter. I felt (and still feel) like it more represented what was going on at the time of the break-up and what one of his big issues with me was, not what he decided sounded better after he'd thought about it somemore. After all, "you never really loved me" is a much more acceptable excuse than "you're planning to pursue a PhD and I don't think someone with a career can provide me with a happy home life," especially in 21st century America, especially when we were both 20 and hadn't been talking about marriage, and especially when he'd already said in the past he didn't want any children and didn't seem to like pets that much either (what? he just expects his wife to sit around the house all day making cookies and watching television?). [Roll Eyes]

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
- The Decemberists

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Erbo
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Icon 1 posted January 30, 2006 08:21            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Attempting to keep this discussion on-topic....
quote:
Originally posted by ASM65816:
Lack of trade tends to be worse than trade. Without trade, using "economic pressure" to bring about (nonviolent) change is not possible. The other means of "encouraging" change in foreign powers typically include much more "collateral damage." Also, trade (ideally) tends to occur for the benefit of all involved parties.

Regarding Google in particular, here's what they had to say about it on Google's official blog:
quote:
Launching a Google domain that restricts information in any way isn't a step we took lightly. For several years, we've debated whether entering the Chinese market at this point in history could be consistent with our mission and values. Our executives have spent a lot of time in recent months talking with many people, ranging from those who applaud the Chinese government for its embrace of a market economy and its lifting of 400 million people out of poverty to those who disagree with many of the Chinese government's policies, but who wish the best for China and its people. We ultimately reached our decision by asking ourselves which course would most effectively further Google's mission to organize the world's information and make it universally useful and accessible. Or, put simply: how can we provide the greatest access to information to the greatest number of people?

Filtering our search results clearly compromises our mission. Failing to offer Google search at all to a fifth of the world's population, however, does so far more severely. Whether our critics agree with our decision or not, due to the severe quality problems faced by users trying to access Google.com from within China, this is precisely the choice we believe we faced. By launching Google.cn and making a major ongoing investment in people and infrastructure within China, we intend to change that.

[...]

Obviously, the situation in China is far different than it is in those other countries; while China has made great strides in the past decades, it remains in many ways closed. 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. But how is that full access most likely to be achieved? We are convinced that the Internet, and its continued development through the efforts of companies like Google, will effectively contribute to openness and prosperity in the world. Our continued engagement with China is the best (perhaps only) way for Google to help bring the tremendous benefits of universal information access to all our users there.

So, it sounds like they had strong reasons for doing what they did. My issue with this move has been, and continues to be, how the public perception of this move will conflict with Google's widely-publicized "Don't Be Evil" philosophy. A large amount of the cachet Google enjoys in certain circles is precisely because they are perceived as being "not evil." (As opposed to certain companies which are widely perceived as being "evil." Fill in your own examples.) If this deal with China starts eroding that public perception of "non-evilness," might Google wind up losing more than it gains?

(However, as I've already pointed out, the perception of "evil" or lack thereof in any corporation is kind of at cross purposes to what the corporation is actually about, viz., to make money for its shareholders. To what extent Google's "Don't Be Evil" philosophy has any relationship to its ability to make money for its shareholders has yet to be determined.)

There are so many factors involved in why Google remains popular among its users that it's difficult to tell what kind of effect this decision will have. I suppose, to quote Van Halen, "Only time will tell if we'll stand the test of time."

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Erbo
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Icon 1 posted January 30, 2006 09:37            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
A postscript to the above, inspired by reading the Groklaw discussion of this issue...

Is it possible we've been misinterpreting what Google has actually said?

The "Do no evil" saying appears to have come from this page...but it never actually appears on the page in this form. Instead, what it says is, "You can make money without doing evil," and follows this with 4 paragraphs specifically covering the "evil" of including intrusive advertising or undisclosed sponsored links in search results. So perhaps Google's "Do no evil" has been mistakenly construed as applying in a wider context than it actually does?

If so, perhaps Google no more deserves a ration of crap for its actions with respect to China than do Microsoft and Yahoo, who are already in the Chinese market and complying with the same Chinese laws. But there is that perception...and we all know that, sometimes, perception defines reality.

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Geordie

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Icon 1 posted January 30, 2006 18:12      Profile for Geordie     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Erbo:
A postscript to the above, inspired by reading the Groklaw discussion of this issue...

Is it possible we've been misinterpreting what Google has actually said?

The "Do no evil" saying appears to have come from this page...but it never actually appears on the page in this form.

"Don't be evil", came out of a meeting on July 19th 2001, where after the engineers started getting antsy with all the corporate clichés that get made fun of at despair.com, Paul Buchheit said, "All those things can be covered by just saying, don't be evil". It was then popularized by Amit Patel who went around writing it on every whiteboard he could find.

Note that it was mainly about how to treat your co-workers at the time, and in that arena evil is a little bit clearer concept than in global industry. By the way I got this all from John Battelle's excellent book on Google called "The Search". There is a sub-chapter in there called "The China Question" as well and it does a good job detailing the back and forth China and Google have been having for a number of years.

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Geordie

Posts: 322 | From: Fairfax Station, VA, USA | Registered: Nov 2001  |  IP: Logged


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