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Ego vadum perussi vestri prandium
"I saw to what extent the people among whom I lived could be trusted as good neighbors and friends; that their friendship was for summer weather only; that they did not greatly propose to do right; that they were a distinct race from me by their prejudices and superstitions."
Henry David Thoreau
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China whispered sweet nothings to Google, and as soon as they could, they bent Google over the nearest server rack and had their way. Plus China is trying ever so hard to pick their pockets.
Oh, I feel so bad for Google./not
As others have said, I'd feel better about Google's decision if they hadn't played pattycake for so long.
Google is next door to me, across the street practically. I know ONE gun-owner who works there, but I'll bet he's the only one and he'd probably get fired if he expressed it openly. The rest are techno Libbots dependent on group-hipness and The Hive - and Google is Hive.0.1
Gooffle co-founder Sergi went to Snodfart up the road and is not American - he's Russian and lacks the certain essential things that Americanize us. His view is European and his experiences at Stanford will reinforce a sense of cosmopolitan elitism - believe me that's translated in the Stanford Experience Gene very expressively. I went there for a time - he will have no problem mingling with the glittery totalitarian cocktail-set as long as it's left-bent.
The folks at Google aren't stupid. The revenue that they'll get from China is not very big: yes, it's a huge market in terms of absolute numbers. No, it's not a big market when you factor in the price point.
On the "cost" side of the ledger is the loss of trust in Google's core markets in North America and Europe. There's nothing in China that can remotely add up to a fraction of this.
China has perhaps the biggest state sponsored hacking industry anywhere, largely targeting software technology. Looks like Google has realized that they have a big ol' bullseye on their chests.
DirtCrashr is right, but they do know what butters their parsnips.
BTW, excellent blog on the Red Chinese* blog scene:
* I only say "Red Chinese"faire ecraser les bourgeois.
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