pop avata

BPO Journal

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Do as the Chinese do

In this post, Nicholas Carr draws attention to Microsoft's new Chinese internet portal that has banned the words "democracy" and "freedom" from parts of its website in an apparent effort to avoid offending Beijing's political censors. Carr reminds us of Bill Gates' vehement advocacy of the Bill of Rights in an article, titled "Support Freedom of Speech on the Internet," that Gates wrote in 1996. Excerpts follow:

"The free exchange of ideas on a global basis is something that is important for the U.S. politically and economically. Let's not undermine the world-wide trend toward free expression by setting a bad example when it comes to free speech on a computer network."

"The Bill of Rights is the foundation on which our nation is built. The Internet is an enormously valuable place in which those rights must continue to thrive. Both the Bill of Rights and the Internet are potentially fragile. Mess with either of them too much, and we might ruin them."

"We can't let this happen."

The stark contrast is offered by an excerpt from an article in the Financial Times, "Don't mention democracy, Microsoft tells China web users":

"Attempts to input words in Chinese such as 'democracy' prompted an error message from the site: 'This item contains forbidden speech. Please delete the forbidden speech from this item.' Other phrases banned included the Chinese for 'demonstration,' 'democratic movement' and 'Taiwan independence."

Outsourcing news
Blogcritics: news and reviews Blogarama - The Blog Directory Blogwise - blog directory Listed on BlogShares

     Take this Offshoring Survey