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Yahoo Agrees to Censor Chinese Portal

timothy posted more than 12 years ago | from the of-the-people-for-the-people dept.

Censorship 352

Bonker writes: "This article at Salon indicates that Yahoo, as part of a larger pledge to 'purge the Web of content that China's communist government deems subversive', has agreed to censor 'pernicious information that may jeopardize state security and disrupt social stability' from its Chinese portal. Yahoo is one of about 300 other ISPs and websites who have signed the 'Public Pledge on Self-discipline for China Internet Industry'."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

this fp dedicated to WOMEN (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888510)

...nature's punching bag.

CLOT r00lz

John Walker Lindh is a fucking maggot. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888732)

I hope he's sodomized in prison constantly for the next twenty years. It still better than what he really deserves. Maybe his faggot father can give him some tips about keeping his boyfriend happy enough not to pass him around to the other convicts. Also, maybe his earth-Mama's druid friends can do some crop circles for him, as tribute.

Fucking maggot from a fucked-up family. Fuck them all.

commies (-1, Offtopic)

mlarios (212290) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888521)

yeah, i always knew the were a bunch on commies :-)

Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888632)

Plekhanov wrote a special pamphlet on the relation of anarchism to Socialism, entitled Anarchism and Socialism and published in German in 1894.

In treating this subject Plekhanov contrived completely to ignore the most urgent, burning, and politically most essential issue in the struggle against anarchism, viz., the relation of the revolution to the state, and the question of the state in general! Two sections of his pamphlet stand out: one of them is historical and literary, and contains valuable material on the history of the ideas of Stirner, Proudhon and others; the other is philistine, and contains a clumsy dissertation on the theme that an anarchist cannot be distinguished from a bandit.

A most amusing combination of subjects and most characteristic of Plekhanov's whole activity on the eve of the revolution and during the revolutionary period in Russia. Indeed, in the years 1905 to 1917, Plekhanov revealed himself as a semi-doctrinaire and semi-philistine who, in politics, trailed in the wake of the bourgeoisie.

We have seen how, in their controversy with the anarchists, Marx and Engels with the utmost thoroughness explained their views on the relation of revolution to the state. In 1891, in his foreword to Marx's Critique of the Gotha Program, Engels wrote that "we"--that is, Engels and Marx--"were at that time, hardly two years after the Hague Congress of the (First) International, engaged in the most violent struggle against Bakunin and his anarchists."

The anarchists had tried to claim the Paris Commune as their "own," so to say, as a corroboration of their doctrine; and they utterly failed to understand its lessons and Marx's analysis of these lessons. Anarchism has failed to give anything even approximating a true solution of the concrete political problems, viz., must the old state machine be smashed? And what should be put in its place?

But to speak of "Anarchism and Socialism" while completely evading the question of the state, and failing to take note of the whole development of Marxism before and after the Commune, meant inevitably slipping into opportunism. For what opportunism needs most of all is that the two questions just mentioned should not be raised at all. That in itself is a victory for opportunism.

A good thing (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888525)

This is a good thing because the last thing we need is the filthy Chinks for getting mad at us over declining to censor.

Besides, it's their nation, we should follow their laws.

Re:A good thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888584)

whos 'We'

do you work for yahoo?

i doubt it.

they wont get mad at the United States. they will get mad at the Chinese subsidary of Yahoo

Moron

read my username (-1, Troll)

You Are A Fag (592497) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888736)

n/t

Wow, It looks like.... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888536)

Slashdot signed it also:

404 File Not Found
The requested URL (yro/02/07/15/1837255.shtml?tid=153) was not found.

If you feel like it, mail the url, and where ya came from to pater@slashdot.org.

So. (3, Funny)

thewheeze (466050) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888543)

What's going to happen when someone realizes the plans on how to build a rocket to get a man into space and in orbit are on a blocked website?

I just find it wrong (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888766)

that a governmant can only keep it's country forom chaos, by hiding what is going on in other parts of the world, and hiding the freedom that we have.

Of course they should (2, Insightful)

ZeroLogic (11697) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888544)

They are a business, if they want to make money in China, then they need to play by China's rules.

Re:Of course they should (5, Insightful)

neocon (580579) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888582)

And if they wanted to do business in South Africa twenty years ago, they would have had to purge sites claiming blacks should have the same rights as whites, and if they wanted to do business in Nazi Germany, they would have to purge all articles written by Jews.

Would you be okay with that, too? Or would you agree with me that there are some steps a business should not be willing to take?

And if they do agree to this, how does this affect their argument here in the US that they are not liable for customer content because they can't control it?

Re:Of course they should (2, Insightful)

slutdot (207042) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888644)

As unpopular as this sounds, business and ethics (as we've seen) don't mix. If Yahoo wants to do business in China, they'll abide by China's laws. It sucks but it's true. Yahoo has every right to not do business in China if it chooses.

IBM (2)

TibbonZero (571809) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888676)

And I guess IBM was right in helping the Nazis?

Re:IBM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888705)

And I guess IBM was right in helping the Nazis?

Well, 10 years ago, no. But since IBM has embraced Linux and OSS, then well, more power to 'em!

Re:IBM (2, Interesting)

Zelet (515452) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888781)

Thomas Watson Sr. (who you say helped the Nazis did not sell tabulation machines to Nazi Germany during the war. He sold them to them before the war in hopes of turning the German government away from a path of war to a path of capitalism (it is documented in his personally writings. Once the war broke out, Germany took control of the IBM manufacturing plant in Germany and IBM no longer had a say in what they produced and for what purpose. A story that you might find interesting is here [usatoday.com]

Re:Of course they should (2, Interesting)

baldass_newbie (136609) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888684)

I think you're missing the point. Economics can lead change (and often does.)
For more on South Africa, look up the Sullivan Principles [globalsull...ciples.org] to see what I mean. Through requesting U.S. firms to abide by the Sullivan Principles, it helped bring about political change in South Africa.
Of course, that means whites aren't safe there anymore, but that's another story.

Re:Of course they should (2)

Elwood P Dowd (16933) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888751)

Exactly. I am upset that Yahoo has chosen to do business in China, if this is what it entails.

Of course, I am neither a customer nor a shareholder of Yahoo, so it makes no difference.

Re:Of course they should (2)

Rick the Red (307103) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888752)

And we all have every right to not do business with Yahoos who support supressive governments. By "not do business" I mean not visit their web sites (fewer hits == lower ad rates).

Of course, it's easy to boycott something that sucks so much I haven't used it in over a year anyway :-)

Re:Of course they should (1)

HalB (127906) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888656)

...and if they wanted to do business in France, they would have to censor Nazi artifacts.

Re:Of course they should (1)

rindeee (530084) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888782)

Thank you!

But shouldn't... (2)

TibbonZero (571809) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888647)

But shouldn't someone (a large company) stand up against this oppressions of their people who deserve to have information? I hope Google doesn't fall into this soon. It's truely terrible how these people are treated over there..

I think that we should all come up with as many ways to circumvent China's "Wall" as we can. I don't see why the US is concerned with people's rights only in certain places, and never China.

Re:But shouldn't... (1)

WPIDalamar (122110) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888660)

Is it an internet companies place to stand up? I would tend to think there are far better organizations for that.

Why not? (1)

TibbonZero (571809) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888727)

Why not? Isn't the Internet a place for FREE ideas and thought? I can make all the software I want to distribute stuff to China. It's not illegal as long as I don't put over 56-bit encryption stuff in it. China can't hurt me, but I can hurt the Chinese communist government with it by letting the people know what's really happening.
If a big company got into the mix, and started pushing towards it, and made 1 billion people it's loyal and happy users because it helped them out, what do they have to loose? China can't do much about it really. They don't have jurisdition here, and with Satilite, we can feed informtion into their countries without their control, because they don't control the skies, and from the looks of it- it's taking them 35 years to even start going into the sky...

Re:But shouldn't... (2)

gentlewizard (300741) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888697)

But wouldn't it be a bit arrogant of a company to impose its values (i.e., information wants to be free, no filters = good filters) on other cultures that may see things differently?

The thing the Internet seems to lack is a Prime Directive, that says it will not interfere in the local decisions of people. Instead, it has to be one size fits all.

Not defending China's record on human rights, but isn't SOME internet access better than NO internet access? Filters are notoriously "leaky" anyway, if citizens have access they'll find a way around the filters.

Yahoo could just do a "bad" job.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888774)

Would Yahoo be at all responsible if they made "bad" filters that just didn't work well, and didn't support that part of their "service" well??? :)

How many companies give bad support when you call them? Ever tried Microsoft? They could model after them..

Re:But shouldn't... (1)

baldass_newbie (136609) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888715)

I don't see why the US is concerned with people's rights only in certain places, and never China.

Where in the world is the U.S. concerned about people's rights???
I'm all for empowering citizens, democratic republics, etc., but where has other nation's citizen's rights EVER been a concern of the U.S., either stated or implied?
Possibly during the reconstruction of Germany, but other than that...

Re:Of course they should (2)

Steve B (42864) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888662)

If China wanted them to hand over blueprints to export-controlled sensitive technologies, should they just do that, too?

Frankly, the US government ought to add these filtering systems to the list of forbidden exports, since their only purpose is to aid governments in opposing our way of life.

Re:Of course they should (1)

The Turd Report (527733) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888768)

If China wanted them to hand over blueprints to export-controlled sensitive technologies, should they just do that, too?

No, cause that would be illegal.

Re:Of course they should (0)

IndependentVik (582582) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888667)

I'm glad you're here to clear things up for me: If, through a given action, you get money then that action is automatically OK.

LOVELY SNOT! WONDERFUL SNOT! by poopbot (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888549)

By J. Wipo Troll, Esq. [slashdot.org] , $Revision: 1.4 $

CmdrTaco: You sit here, dear.

CowboiKneel: All right.

CmdrTaco (to Waitress): Morning!

Waitress: Morning!

CmdrTaco: Well, whatve you got?

Waitress: Well, theres egg and bacon; egg, sausage and bacon; egg and snot [slashdot.org] ; egg, bacon and snot; egg, bacon, sausage, and snot; snot, bacon, sausage, and snot [slashdot.org] ; snot, egg, snot, snot, bacon, and snot; snot, sausage, snot, snot, bacon, snot, tomato, and snot [slashdot.org] ;

Slashdot Crew (starting to chant): Snot, snot, snot, snot

Waitress: Snot, snot, snot [slashdot.org] , egg, and snot; snot, snot, snot, snot, snot, snot, baked beans, snot, snot, snot

Slashdot Crew (singing): Snot! Lovely snot [slashdot.org] ! Lovely snot [slashdot.org] !

Waitress: or Lobster Thermidor au Crevette with a Mornay sauce served in a Provencale manner with shallots and aubergines garnished with truffle pate, brandy and with a fried egg on top and snot.

CowboiKneel: Have you got anything without snot [slashdot.org] ?

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CowboiKneel: I dont want any snot!

CmdrTaco: Why cant he have egg, bacon, snot [slashdot.org] , and sausage?

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Slashdot Crew: Snot, snot, snot, snot [slashdot.org] ! (crescendo through next few lines)

CowboiKneel: Could you do the egg, bacon, snot [slashdot.org] , and sausage without the snot then?

Waitress: Urgghh!

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Slashdot Crew: Lovely snot! Wonderful snot!

Waitress: Shut up!

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CmdrTaco: Sshh, dear, dont cause a fuss. Ill have your snot [slashdot.org] . I love it. Im having snot, snot, snot, snot, snot, snot, snot, beaked beans, snot, snot, snot, and snot [slashdot.org] !

Slashdot Crew (singing): Snot, snot, snot, snot [slashdot.org] . Lovely snot! Wonderful snot!

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- posted by poopbot: because we're all crapflooders at heart

u1X5fv9El3

The shape of things to come (4, Funny)

isomeme (177414) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888551)

And somewhere, John Ashcroft is moaning with envy...

Purging? (1)

prof187 (235849) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888553)

a voluntary pledge to purge the Web of content that China's communist government deems subversive

So the Chinese content portals will be the bulimics of the internet?

Hmmm... (2, Insightful)

YahoKa (577942) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888555)

What do you think people in the 60's would have done if a corporation supported the "commie bastards?"

People in the 60's (2)

truthsearch (249536) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888686)

Well Yahoo could do 2 things: take a little bad PR in the USA or not attempt to be the major portal for the largest potential internet user market. Today a little bad PR doesn't affect them much. I think, though, in the 60's there probably would have been enough complaints that they would have pulled out their Chinese portal.

Although, this is from someone born in the following decade...

Yahoo to protect China's state security? (3, Funny)

SimplyCosmic (15296) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888557)

I guess that means the west will never learn that Calgon's detergent was that laundrymat's "ancient Chinese secret".

Re:Yahoo to protect China's state security? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888772)

>"ancient Chinese secret".

Huh?

well then... (2)

warpSpeed (67927) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888561)

I guess the chinese will just have to do what we here in the good ol' U S of A do to get uncensored material, use google.ca [google.ca]

Re:well then... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888678)

Why would you use google.ca if you're in the USA? Logically you'd just use google.com which would be the US site.

Someone's got to ask (2)

JUSTONEMORELATTE (584508) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888567)

So where are the links? Would google cache links still work for the pernicious content?

Well.. (2)

GodHead (101109) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888569)

At least they did it to help them "stableize" their society and not for just making money. I'd hate a company that did that SO much I'd cancel my free e-mail with them in protest.

Or maybe open a few hundred more.... Hrmm...

Well, The way it is. (0, Troll)

MrPerfekt (414248) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888570)

As much as we don't agree with it, we have to respect it. This is yet another lesson in tolerance. But yes, when is enough, enough? That's another topic unfortunately. Just be thankful it's not our ways I suppose.

Re:Well, The way it is. (2, Insightful)

neocon (580579) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888609)

Where do you get this idea? Should Americans in the 1940's have `just accepted' Nazi Germany because `that's the way it is'? Really?

Glad to be an American (2, Insightful)

KingKire64 (321470) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888571)

Its times like this that alot of the anti US rants just seem... trival. Freedom of speech is by far the most important freedom and America(for the most part) does a damn good job.

Re:Glad to be an American (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888636)

So you think freedom of speach is as american as apple pie (i.e. no FOS or AP elsewhere)?

Re:Glad to be an American (0)

futard (462571) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888716)

tell that to mumia, or peltier, or fucking i dunno, dimitry skylarov for that matter

Re:Glad to be an American (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888740)

Like Freedom of speech is only an American Standard...

Look aroud.. Mostly all european country have Freedom of speech, Japan, Canada and many more.

USA is not Unique in it's democracy.

Yahoo is an American Cie. And they are helping China to censor their website.

USA is ruled by money... Nothing else. not Freedom nor liberty.

Re:Glad to be an American (1, Insightful)

IndependentVik (582582) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888757)

Have we really instilled respect for freedom when a US corporation is so ready and willing to deprive the Chinese populace of their inalienable rights?

Freedom disappears in baby steps. When we accept that other folks don't deserve freedom, it's not a far leap to think that our neighbors, and then ourselves, don't deserve it either.

Amazing (2)

papasui (567265) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888572)

They found a way to make money capitalisticly against communism.

Chinese Port Holes (-1)

Reikk (534266) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888577)

I love to fuck 13 year old chinese girls - their cunts are sweeter than sczechwan chicken

And this surprises us, why? (1)

EMDischarge (589758) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888578)

Gee, not that this is the first time corporate America has kowtowed to a dictatorial government's whims. Nazi Germany comes to mind. Many companies will do whatever it takes to be "first to market," even if it requires doing things that would be appalling back in the US...

*sigh* (2, Insightful)

caveat (26803) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888585)

before y'all atart bitching about how yahoo is now depriving people of the right to free information, remember they're a for-profit business, out to make a buck...and in spite of all the ethical issues, china has a potential market of a BILLION consumers. hell, if i were in their shoes, i'd do the Morally Wrong Thing, since it would make me a Heaping Shitload Of Money. plus now they won't get sued by the chinese like the french are doing, for distributing content that's against said country's laws. anyway, in all honesty, i'd rather see companies doing this than underreporting $4bn of profits.

Re:*sigh* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888665)

So basically your saying that it's acceptable to support a communist dictatorship that continually represses and abuses its citizens' civil rights in exchange just to make money?

Re:*sigh* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888739)

Yes.

Slow Down Cowboy!

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Re:*sigh* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888717)

The value of money is far overblown. I'd rather stand up for my civil liberties and the liberties of others than make a "quick-buck". Personally, such low-bottom-of-the-basement-make-money-at-all-costs -mentality makes me sick. We have far too much damned GREED in this world.

Re:*sigh* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888794)

How'd you get internet access way out there in your 6x8 cabin in the woods?

Re:*sigh* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888721)

You make a good point. I mean, afterall, it's only China. Who gives a shit if they're censored over there? They made their bed and now they need to sleep in it. If they hadn't been such dicks and supported democracy maybe they wouldn't be in that situation. How do you like Mao now you fucking red shitheads?

Re:*sigh* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888790)

Here's 2 Million Bucks go kill your familly

Greeting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888593)

Hi! My name is Yahoo. I'll be your bitch today.

Just use another portal? (2)

dciman (106457) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888595)

I relize that this is a huge blow for privacy concerns the world over and seems outrageous to me. However, I have to question if this policy really has much effect on browsing habits? Can't the people just go to "www.yahoo.com" or my.yahoo.com or CNN, or.... Catch my drift? I would think the opressed people will always be able to find away around the constrants placed on them.

As Dr. Malcom says in Jurassic Park " Life finds a way." ;)

Re:Just use another portal? (2)

Mr. Sketch (111112) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888698)

Perhaps you're not aware of the Great [slashdot.org] Firewall [slashdot.org] of [slashdot.org] China [slashdot.org]

Re:Just use another portal? (2)

athakur999 (44340) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888759)

One of my friends is in China right now on an assignment. He can't even access Verizon's online bill payment page from there. I don't know why the ability to pay your phone bill online would destabilize China, but I guess it does...

TDKA (2)

SubtleNuance (184325) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888604)

Looks like Plutocratic American Companies have no problem w/ the Fascist elements of China's Government*.

Big Surprise. This is two heads of a the same monster...

NewsFlash: Corporations are devoid of morals. They would sell your organs for $0.10 if you fell asleep in their lobby**

*Which i believe is not 100% terrible, outside of the censorship and lack of soviet(look-it-up)-style rule - i rather like state ownership of capital.

**I Heard that somewhere today (here?) thought it was dead-on-scary-as-hell-funny.

Warhead versus shield... (1)

billbaggins (156118) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888605)

...ancient lesson. The warhead always wins in the end. The information will probably get through, somehow.

See, for instance, the DeCSS gallery [cmu.edu] for a great list of reasonably difficult-to-block ways of distributing some controversial bit of text. I think I've seen something like this [nmsu.edu] being bandied about in recent days specifically for dealing with the great firewall of China...

hopefully (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888611)

Hopefully this will just amount to blocking
all traffic from clashdot and the rest of the
Omg Stupid Dumbasses Network.

The sooner this crap dries up and drifts off,
the better.

Self-censorship in the name of business (4, Insightful)

Bonker (243350) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888614)

Scarily enough, it goes on in the U.S. too. Take a good, long hard look at Walmart Corp. They are one of the nation's largest redistributors of magazines and other periodicals... so large, in fact, that if Walmart refuses to carry a magazine for a month, it can break a publication financially.

Combine that with the fact that Walmart has always upheld a rather fraudulent reputation that it is interested in the concerns of senior citezens, religious organizations, and 'family-oriented' concerns, and you end up with something pretty scary. Walmart has been known to refuse to sell books, games, CD's and magazines that had any kind of content deemed innapropriate. Quite a few of the magazines in the U.S. have to run their covers and editorial content past Walmart for approval before they can go to press.

Re:Self-censorship in the name of business (3, Troll)

danheskett (178529) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888711)

Quite a few of the magazines in the U.S. have to run their covers and editorial content past Walmart for approval before they can go to press.

So, whats the problem with that?

People trust WalMart. Lots of people delegate their trust to WalMart, and hope that WalMart represents them well enough.

Should WalMart carry stuff that is patently offensive to its customers? If I made a magazine called "Actual Human Entrails", which featured centerfolds of actual human organs, should they carry it? I bet that magazine would sell big in certain circles.

So are you claiming that Walmart should carry my magazine? If they don't, are my rights being violated? Am I being censored? Is WalMart bad because they won't sell my magazine?

Re:Self-censorship in the name of business (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888753)

That is such BS.

Walmart doesn't sell pornography, specialty magazines (2600 anyone?), or many of the more violent video games. Those publications aren't hurt.

Besides, this is GOVERNMENT enforced censorship. I personally don't want my government telling me what I can & cannot buy. If a local shop refuses to sell Penthouse, then that's their choice.

Re:Self-censorship in the name of business (2)

Brian_Ellenberger (308720) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888763)

>Scarily enough, it goes on in the U.S. too. Take >a good, long hard look at Walmart Corp. They are >one of the nation's largest redistributors of >magazines and other periodicals... so large, in >fact, that if Walmart refuses to carry a >magazine for a month, it can break a publication >financially.

>Walmart has been known to refuse to sell books, >games, CD's and magazines that had any kind of >content deemed innapropriate.

I'm sorry, but some people (including myself) shop at Warmart specifically because they have this policy. I love being able to walk around and not being bombarded with the latest "shock" CDs and soft porn "fashion" magazines.

I'm sick of people on Slashdot abusing the term "freedom". Freedom is Wal-mart choosing not to buy crap CD's and magazines and freedom is me shopping at Wal-mart because I don't want anything to do with that stuff.

What freedom is not is self-righteous individuals like yourself taking it upon themself to tell Wal-Mart and the millions of people who shop there what to do. Just don't shop there.

And its not like there isn't competition or other choices (KMart, Target, the mini-mart, the Internet).

Brian Ellenberger

Re:Self-censorship in the name of business (4, Insightful)

isomeme (177414) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888778)

While this situation sucks, it still doesn't approach the evil of government censorship. If Walmart drives your magazine out of business, you can still put your ideas out in other ways. If the government decides your ideas are illegal, then you have no recourse.

That being said, it sounds like this particular example looks (or is being made to look) more like self- than imposed censorship. I would say this move by China is similar to the coerced self-regulation of movies and comics in the US. The threat of legally codified censorship was used to pressure those industries into the standardized rating system and the "comics code" respectively. This is a gray area between purely capitalist "censorship" like the Walmart case and "say that and I will shoot you" style direct legal censorship.

If anything, I'd count this as a step up for Chinese government. They tend to go directly to the jackboots-and-guns stage rather than finessing issues like this, so using "voluntary" compliance here may be a good sign that things are beginning to loosen up over there.

This is a shame. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888615)

It amazes me that companies will put aside morals and values to make a buck in China. Yes, China is the largest untapped consumer group in the world, but the Chinese government has a histroy of its on subversive behavior. Perhaps when the government gets its head out of its ass and takes away MFN status from China we will see a change in China's treatment of its citizens. I guess maintaining a favorable GDP is more important than supporting the inalienable human rights we Americans feel are so important. I doubt Yahoo would ever do the same for North Korea and Cuba, but alas China has a billion consumers.

The first step (1)

2names (531755) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888616)

This isn't really the first step. Many other corporations have bowed under pressure from foreign governments (including the US). What I don't understand is why is it Yahoo's problem to control the Chinese people? This is proof that the Chinese government is losing control of the populace. Hopefully, the people will revolt soon and get rid of the Communist regime.

ssl proxy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888622)

How would I go about setting up an encrypted web proxy, and then letting, maybe a some students mainland China know about it?

How is this different from selling IRON to Hitler? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888634)

or oil to the Japanese during the late 1930's when they were raping Europe and Manchuria.

They'd sell their mother for a buck.

there should be a way to force their hand (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888640)

What will happen is the anti-communist china groups will now be able to bring in streams of reports, content, and information that these guys will be left out on. If it is done enough, they should be able to brow-beat these providers into backing out of their Chineese agreement and force them to reaffirm where their true roots are.

What I don't see (3, Interesting)

Mr Guy (547690) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888642)

Is how submersive sites are judged.

Looking at the agreement summary, it is OBVIOUS to me Yahoo would sign it. While we like to focus (and we do) on how evil the chinese government can be (and they are), this may not be the best example of that.

What Yahoo seems to have agreed to:
1) Don't host anything illegal to your target audience.
2) Don't promote porn to China.
3) Don't attempt to incite revolution.

I'm sure once you take local laws into context (which their TOS already does, no doubt) it seems to be nothing they haven't already agreed to before.

Go ahead, post pictures to yahoo of hardcore porn where someone uses a bomb as vibrator and explains how to make it. See your browser smoke as they pull the page as fast as they can, even on Yahoo USA.

Re:What I don't see (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888743)

3) Don't attempt to incite revolution.

Keep in mind that China's definition of "inciting revolution" included several thousand Falun Gong members gathering in a peaceful demonstration. In fact, you couldn't even call it a "demonstration", they weren't even saying anything. Apparently sitting perfectly still and meditating is morally equivalent to what Timothy McVeigh did in Oklahoma.

Re: your password! (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888652)

You can access
very important
information by
this password

DO NOT SAVE
password to disk
use your mind

now press
cancel

All together now... (0, Troll)

Dr. Bent (533421) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888653)

yaBOOOooooooooo!!!!!!!!

So...this brings up a couple of questions... (1)

pudge_lightyear (313465) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888654)

1. Are all sites linked to by Yahoo's chinese portal in Chinese? If this is the case, then there is really nothing to this. Those sites are already hosted and run according to Chinese law.
2. Is yahoo restricting access from China to Yahoo.com? If so... that is sad. If not... how in the world would they filter their English search engine to only allow certain sites into China? It probably means that they won't filter that...and because the Chinese language is as complicated as it is, and doesn't translate to keyboards very well...most people with internet access probably know some english. They'll get to the information anyway.
3. Has China established itself as a technological black hole? I mean...are they cutting off all internet traffic that doesn't abide by their rules. There's no way that any global news site could ever restrict content based on their wishes...that is probably fine with them...but technology news, driver and support databases, etc... and how can anyone use computers without at least viewing /. ten times a day?

Oh Well, (1)

antitribue (524882) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888663)

I think its funny I just now am seeing this story on /. after I just finished reading a cnn article [cnn.com] about hackers trying to prevent this. I understand that Yahoo is just doing what they need to do to say in business there.
Any business that works in more than one country has to update there business practices for that countries laws and I can't falt them for it. But I do think most of these efforts by the china are going to be wastes of time.

Ah, Corporate Integrity... (5, Insightful)

gdyas (240438) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888669)

When companies like Yahoo! look across the Pacific at a large group of people fed bullshit & held under the thumb of an oppressive dictatorship and all they can think of is how they can buddy up to the gov't in order to get a crack at these "new consumers", I'd say that we have larger corporate ethics problems than Enron, kids.

Yahoo! Where your civil liberties are what your government tells us they are.

This is a shame... (1)

dubious9 (580994) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888679)

But unfortunately money speaks before human rights. Who can argue with a country that houses that many users? We just really need one ISP to stand defiant in front the approaching communist tank.

So, let me get this straight... (3, Interesting)

RyanFenton (230700) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888685)

...Yahoo, an widely used index of web sites in general, has agreed to take down any links to sites that the government of China asks them to, no questions asked? No burden of proof needed, or system of challenging decisions made?

From on point of view, this seems a pretty dumb decision on the part of Yahoo. But on the other hand, if Yahoo just agrees to the contract to get the support of the Chinese government, then happens to drag it's feet and "forget" to censor things, it's a nice beaurocratic turn around until the Chinese government catches on and cancells the agreement, by which time more Chinese citizens will have taken a liking to Yahoo.

So, depending on how it's used and "enforced", this might yet be a good thing. :^)

Ryan Fenton

'spade' eq 'spade' (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888690)

They are a business, if they want to make money in China, then they need to play by China's rules.

Yes. Remember that anything you do is OK -- as long as you're a business, and you did it to make money.

As much as we don't agree with it, we have to respect it.

We do? No we don't. Hasn't moral relativism been put down yet?

I don't respect Yahoo helping Chinese dictators send political dissidents to prison. I'm trying.. trying.. trying very hard now.... Nope, can't do it. Shame on Yahoo.

Nothing New (2, Insightful)

G0SP0DAR (552303) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888692)

This happened to Yahoo! in France with auctions of Third Reich memorabilia, and Yahoo! severely censored itself to a far greater extent to prevent further controversy in France. How could it come as a surprise that the ChiCom's would follow suit?

heh (1)

taernim (557097) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888693)

Maybe they should vote to stop all the hacks that culminate from that region (SE Asia) first, before deciding censorship is the way to go. But no, I guess they're right... limiting freedom is surely MUCH more important than stopping illegal practices which damage people much more than allowing knowledge to flow...

So much... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888694)

...for the internet changing the world. Oh well, once it beacme a tool of capitalism this was bound to happen.

So, what's the next big thing, now that the net has basically fizzeled?

China and Microsoft (1)

maximillionus (185440) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888696)

I wonder if these two will eventually have to compete against each other in subversity. They both seem to want similar things in this case... domination :)

Mostly China's problem (2)

Skyshadow (508) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888702)

While Yahoo's actions are rather disgusting to me personally (I'd boycott them if I actually used them in the first place), they are also very typically capitalistic. This is actually a good thing in terms of the system we in the US adhere to.

This is mostly bad for China -- no country ever got ahead by censoring what its citizens could see or hear. At the very least, they're insuring that they'll have a public ignorant of current affairs (and thus no gov't reforms, no progress on their upcoming corruption-caused AIDS disaster, etc). At worst, they've provided a system which will keep the average Chinese citizens in the cultural dark ages for another few decades.

All governments *want* to do this sort of thing at one time or another; it's just that wise leaders (or at least, wise founders) can see past the immediate benefit to the long-term harm of these sorts of policies. Arresting social development and free exchange of ideas and information might make it easier for the elderly thugs that form China's government to cling to power a bit longer, but it will also keep China a third-rate country.

Good job, dipshits.

yeah...but what about... (3, Funny)

aftk2 (556992) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888703)

What I'm really concerned about is how this decision will effect those Yahoo commercials?

"Hey...where'd you get such great information on Shanghai?"
"...Yahoo..."

"How'd you know it was going to rain today?"
"...Yahoo..."

"Hey...where'd you get that Ayn Rand essay?"
"...Google..."

And in run the secret police...

Do You Yahoo? Not Anymore...

hmmm..... (2)

Patrick13 (223909) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888741)

i guess that is why there isn't a chinese version of slashdot...

how would china feel about poopbot & the other trolls???

Sullivan Principles (1)

baldass_newbie (136609) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888749)

Perhaps Yahoo [yahoo.com] should adopt the Sullivan Principles [globalsull...ciples.org] .
From the site: "The objectives of the Global Sullivan Principles are to support economic, social and political justice by companies where they do business; to support human rights and to encourage equal opportunity at all levels of employment, including racial and gender diversity on decision making committees and boards; to train and advance disadvantaged workers for technical, supervisory and management opportunities; and to assist with greater tolerance and understanding among peoples; thereby, helping to improve the quality of life for communities, workers and children with dignity and equality."

That pernicious spam.... (1)

bahtama (252146) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888769)

Apparantly, open mail relays don't count as being pernicious or something that disrupts social stability. Of course, due to open servers in China and elsewhere, I've been invited to take part in an exclusive Nigerian deal that will make me rich! Mwhahahahah! ;)

the UN (1)

pyrrho (167252) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888771)

Clearly only the UN has the power to regulate the net.

ironic? insightful? troll? I'm not saying.

I prefered quantitive karma to qualitative karma. One was a fact (most calculated) and the other is mere opinion (mostly affected!) Calculation vs. affectation.

Communism and Capitalism compatible? (2)

swb (14022) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888779)

What scares me is that we're starting to find out that big, monopoly capitalism is indeed compatible with big, totalitarian communism. Lies and propaganda to the workers, gilded perks to the bosses. In fact, monopoly capitalism may just be totalitarian communism that actually works right.

The big difference it seems to me is that the communists have the balls it takes to grease party members when they fuck up, corporate guys just get paid off.

calling all spammers (2)

Patrick13 (223909) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888785)

I guess what needs to happen is that a spammer needs to collect the emails of all the govt. officials responsible for this policy, and spam them with a bunch of "subversive" content, with the subject line being

RE: The information you requested.

then the monitors will have them all arrested, and they will have to repeal the law.... ;)

STOP ILLEGAL CHINESE OCCUPATION OF TIBET NOW!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888788)

OK, now Slashdot will also be deemed subversive by The Party in China.

(posted cowardly anonymously as I wouldn't want my family billed by the People's 'Liberation' Army for the cost of the bullet)

The new game (5, Insightful)

jaymzter (452402) | more than 12 years ago | (#3888792)

As a child of the cold war I love it when I get reminded of the good ol' days. China learned what the USSR never did. You can't make headway declaring "We will bury you!" from the podium of the UN. China knows, or believes, that the way to control America is through the pursestrings. As long as China continues to hold cash in front of American companies, there will always be a vocal lobby in Washington that will scream down any mention of the word ChiComm, and any punishment for China on its human rights record.
America doesn't stand up for its ideals anymore unless there is no other recourse. It's sick and twisted, but business as usual.
This article only reminds us that our government..err, companies are doing things that we wish they wouldn't. We shouldn't be outraged, we should be mobilized.

OT: Testing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3888796)

I need to get as many people as posible to send email to ender-iii@cogeco.ca [mailto]
Can everyone spam me please?
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