Friday, January 06, 2006

It's called aiding and abetting

Microsoft in China

(Hat tip: Rconversation)

As mentioned here previously, Microsoft is catching some well deserved flak for shutting down the blog of a Chinese investigative reporter who had the temerity to suggest folks cancel their subscription to a Beijing newspaper. Microsoft's story is that they have to obey local laws, but that has more than a few holes in it - Microsoft stonewalls on Chinese censorship:
There is growing concern in the human rights community over Microsoft's decision to censor a Chinese blogger on its MSN site and its refusal to explain its actions.

Microsoft is refusing to say what laws blogger Zhoa Jing broke that caused it to remove his entries from the MSN server.

The company did, however, confirm that the blogger used an URL rather than, which is reserved for Chinese servers run by Microsoft and a Chinese partner.

"I do not know where the physical server is located, but it would appear that Microsoft is permitting the Chinese authorities to exert control over content stored outside China," said Daniel Simons, legal officer at free expression advocacy group Article 19.

"If Microsoft is going to bow to the lowest common denominator and allow every country in which it does business to control the content of all their blogging servers worldwide, taking down content will soon become a full-time occupation."
Good thing I'm not on MSN Spaces.