Is Google.cn Still Evil if No One Uses It?

The answer is yes.

In yesterday’s stockholder meeting, Sergey Brin noted that Chinese users haven’t yet flocked to the censored Google.cn service, noting that usage of Google.cn is just a fraction of one percent of Google searches in China, while the uncensored Google.com is still used for more than 99% of all Google searches. (Google’s primary argument for creating the censored version was that the user experience was awful on the Google.com site, which has to go through China’s firewall)

Brin was responding to a question from Amnesty International, and seemed to be arguing that since no one is using the new censored service yet, Google hasn’t actually violated their “Don’t be evil” mantra, that they are not profiting from active censorship in China.

Not yet, that is.

This reasoning is on par with a toy company designing a hazardous product, and then using the defense that “no one bought it anyway, so what’s the big deal.” Sometimes I really wonder how their logical and moral compasses are aligned over at the G’plex.
[via Don’t Be Evil]

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