In response to “a highly sophisticated and targeted attack,” Google decided to stop censoring google.cn, attacks from within China that Google must have decided are somehow linked to efforts by the Chinese government. In China, Google is not the number one search engine (that title belongs to baidu, a Chinese search engine), and Google has also been fighting Chinese claims of copyright infringement of Chinese books that were posted on Google Books.
The Washington Post reports:
Until now, Western companies and governments have mostly gone along with Beijing’s polices — though U.S. computer manufacturers successfully resisted an attempt by China last year to require that censoring software be pre-installed on all new computers. Now Google has taken the admirable step of embracing open and public resistance. Skeptics point out that it was losing the search market battle inside China to the domestic brand Baidu. But Google.cn still attracts tens of millions of Chinese users, who will have questions for their government if the company is driven out. U.S consumers, for their part, should want answers from companies such as Apple and Microsoft, which continue to kowtow to the Chinese censors. Internet activists say Microsoft censors Chinese language searches of Bing both in and outside of China; Apple has blocked Chinese from downloading applications related to the Dalai Lama