Jay Xu, IT business owner, main business includes software developing
GT: Would Google’s pulling out of China greatly affect your life and the IT business in China?
Xu: As an owner of IT business, I have a lot to think about now. Google.cn provides a lot of service, such as free cooperate mailbox and calendar service to small-and-middle-sized companies like ours. Personally, I am a gmail user, too. I have over 9,000 emails in the mailbox, including contracts and other important documents concerning customers. I won’t take the risk of losing these files if google would be banned in China, therefore I am thinking of moving the cooperate mailbox and personal mailbox to other servers, and that would be a big and costly change to make.
Besides the up-mentioned issue, with Google.cn’s pulling out of China, many of the application, for example Google music and Google Map in China, might no longer be available.
On a broader scale, Google’s pulling out of China would lead to the total stop of localization of Google service. Some of the cooperating service between Chinese websites, for example top100cn.com, Google music’s partner, and mapabc.com, the partner of Google Map China. Google might not be renewed when the contract expires.
GT: According to you, who is the biggest loser in this incident? Chinese government, Google or Chinese users?
Xu: I can’t really say Google lost much in China. Even with 30% of the market share here, the profit Google made in China is nothing compared to their business in the US and Europe. Their standing up to Chinese government had great effect at home, most Western media back them up by highly praising their act. Google may lose 90 million dollars in China, but they win the heart of users at home.
For Chinese users, most of the service Google provided can be found on the other search engines, so they should not have much trouble adapting to that.
But Chinese government is now in a public image crisis because of Google. They are in dilemma of how to respond. The Western media is clearly supporting Google, both on the freedom of speech and the government intervention ground. If Chinese government said they didn’t like that, then they would be condemned of abusing the freedom of speech. But if they stepped back from the previous hard stance, it would be inconsistent. Therefore the best thing to do might be remaining silence.
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