Waraku Education

Ideas, experiments and observations as they occur [and I have time] relating to teaching and learning in a secondary school - special focus on ICT.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Censorship, freedom to information and activism resource

Students for a Free Tibet : No Luv 4 Google

Very recently Google agreed to provide a filtered search facility to China. http://www.google.cn/ There is a lot of chatter about this in the news and blogosphere.

Many seem to feel that this is a sell out to free speech and freedom of information. On the one hand Google has been about providing access to information and now these values seem to be compromised.

contrary to Google co-founder Sergey Brin's promise to inform users when their search results are censored, the company frequently filters out sites without revealing it.
http://news.com.com/What+Google+censors+in+China/2100-1030_3-6031727.html


This is a link to a site which is about trying to do something about this issue - it is an example of activism and the use of ICT's to promote a cause. How quickly a group is able to respond to issues and get people involved on a global scale
http://noluv4google.com/article.php?list=type&type=92

I wonder how successful they will be in creating a stir?

The site has recently been launched by http://studentsforafreetibet.org/ - Students for a free Tibet.

Adding to this

Pollies in US on Wednesday "attacked Google, Microsoft, Cisco Systems and Yahoo for declining to appear at a briefing about China's Internet censorship and called for a new law to outlaw compliance with such requirements."

"These massively successful high-tech companies, which couldn't bring themselves to send their representatives to this meeting today, should be ashamed," said Rep. Tom Lantos, the California Democrat who is co-chairman of the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, which organized the briefing.

"With all their power and influence, wealth and high visibility, they neglected to commit to the kind of positive action that human rights activists in China take every day," Lantos went on. "They caved in to Beijing's demands for the sake of profits, or whatever else they choose to call it."

http://news.com.com/2100-1028_3-6033976.html
I found these links in the Tasmanian IT TEachers talk list
http://blogs.guardian.co.uk/technology/archives/2006/01/25/google_agrees_to_censor_results_in_china.html
http://www.google-watch.org/china.html
http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/filtering/china/block-kw-detail.html

Might be an issue that is worth keeping an eye on in view of the approaching Olympics as well.

Consider this when thinking about the filtering that is happening in schools as well.

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