MSN’er adds to China discussion

Michael Connolly, a product unit manager on MSN Spaces, adds onto the China discussion with a post titled “Running a Service in China.” Here’s a quote from his post: “In China, there is a unique issue for our entire industry: there are certain aspects of speech in China that are regulated by the government.  We’ve made a choice to run a service in China, and to do that, we need to adhere to local regulations and laws. “

80 thoughts on “MSN’er adds to China discussion

  1. “But with China’s economic power, when China says “jump”, MS says “How High”.

    So does every other company. That’s just the way it is.”

    But we can change “the way it is”. If enough American consumers protest (boycott?), we can make these decisions too costly for Microsoft, Yahoo and even Google. Now, the easy way out for companies is to favor the Chinese Communist Party and other repressive regimes. But if people that are against censorship of ideas such as democracy and independence would adjust their buying decisions accordingly, the Chinese Communist Party would find fewer US companies willing to do everything they could to help in the repression.

  2. “But with China’s economic power, when China says “jump”, MS says “How High”.

    So does every other company. That’s just the way it is.”

    But we can change “the way it is”. If enough American consumers protest (boycott?), we can make these decisions too costly for Microsoft, Yahoo and even Google. Now, the easy way out for companies is to favor the Chinese Communist Party and other repressive regimes. But if people that are against censorship of ideas such as democracy and independence would adjust their buying decisions accordingly, the Chinese Communist Party would find fewer US companies willing to do everything they could to help in the repression.

  3. Bill, I agree companies exist to make money, what I am saddened by though is individuals who lack the courage to stand up and reign that drive in. Humans can do things other than make money, and when you find yourself curtailing other’s rights in an effort to make money yourself it is time for some reflection.

  4. Bill, I agree companies exist to make money, what I am saddened by though is individuals who lack the courage to stand up and reign that drive in. Humans can do things other than make money, and when you find yourself curtailing other’s rights in an effort to make money yourself it is time for some reflection.

  5. No BILL of Rights, hey?

    This is life under dominion.
    The merging Venn diagram of “communist” China and our Command-and-Control corporate structures feels inevitbale as they both are Statist enterprises to their very genetic core. This touches deep nerves running through all of us – as evident by these comment threads.

    Our founding fathers were explicitly anti-corporate from the Boston Tea Party to laying out how corporations should never live longer than a human being and were actually meant to be dissolved like the figments they are lest heady power blur frail human vision. They’d just suffered under chubby King George and his no-bid chummy contracts to bleed the colonies {arguably economic slaves} pallid and the Framers and Founders were in no mood to allow this to happen again.

    So, hey, Bill, MSofties, if I take over a country and buy enough copies of Longhorn you’ll help my henchman crack down? I suppose if most of you look the other way while a few of you get hands dirty it’s all OK once the stock-options ripen – right?

    WRONG – You don’t have to comply with local laws if you refuse to do business with local strongmen… but it all depends on how close one keeps billfold-to-soul, I suppose.

    Money is not the measure of all things and waving opportunities in front of me with tempting deals or job offers doesn’t buy my respect, nor silence.

  6. No BILL of Rights, hey?

    This is life under dominion.
    The merging Venn diagram of “communist” China and our Command-and-Control corporate structures feels inevitbale as they both are Statist enterprises to their very genetic core. This touches deep nerves running through all of us – as evident by these comment threads.

    Our founding fathers were explicitly anti-corporate from the Boston Tea Party to laying out how corporations should never live longer than a human being and were actually meant to be dissolved like the figments they are lest heady power blur frail human vision. They’d just suffered under chubby King George and his no-bid chummy contracts to bleed the colonies {arguably economic slaves} pallid and the Framers and Founders were in no mood to allow this to happen again.

    So, hey, Bill, MSofties, if I take over a country and buy enough copies of Longhorn you’ll help my henchman crack down? I suppose if most of you look the other way while a few of you get hands dirty it’s all OK once the stock-options ripen – right?

    WRONG – You don’t have to comply with local laws if you refuse to do business with local strongmen… but it all depends on how close one keeps billfold-to-soul, I suppose.

    Money is not the measure of all things and waving opportunities in front of me with tempting deals or job offers doesn’t buy my respect, nor silence.

  7. “Certain aspects of speech” — the fact that he used this phrase reeks of bullshit used to obfuscate the main point. Why not spell out what those aspects of speech are? Oh, I know: it would sound really awful if he did.

  8. “Certain aspects of speech” — the fact that he used this phrase reeks of bullshit used to obfuscate the main point. Why not spell out what those aspects of speech are? Oh, I know: it would sound really awful if he did.

  9. Unlike many, I have not had a beef with Microsoft until this moment. Their aggression is good business. The Justice Department went after a monopoly that had not yet formed (though I think it would have eventually formed). But this conformity to China’s censorship policy has incredible implications concerning the element of trust – and now a touch of fear. I have finally become convinced that Microsoft is not a benign power but one that sucks up to money and power because that is where its priorities are.

  10. Unlike many, I have not had a beef with Microsoft until this moment. Their aggression is good business. The Justice Department went after a monopoly that had not yet formed (though I think it would have eventually formed). But this conformity to China’s censorship policy has incredible implications concerning the element of trust – and now a touch of fear. I have finally become convinced that Microsoft is not a benign power but one that sucks up to money and power because that is where its priorities are.

  11. FYI. Michael Anti has moved to another site which is blocked by the Chinese firewall. A fairly large number of Chinese bloggers are now reproducing his blogs verbatim on MSN spaces.

    Do you now plan to shut them all down?

  12. FYI. Michael Anti has moved to another site which is blocked by the Chinese firewall. A fairly large number of Chinese bloggers are now reproducing his blogs verbatim on MSN spaces.

    Do you now plan to shut them all down?

  13. What law would be too much for Microsoft to bear? What law would be too much for you, Scoble, to personally bear being affiliated with Microsoft if they enforced? I think you should really think about these questions.

  14. What law would be too much for Microsoft to bear? What law would be too much for you, Scoble, to personally bear being affiliated with Microsoft if they enforced? I think you should really think about these questions.

  15. I’m sorry that “we are just following the law” argument is nonsense.

    Michael Anti’s blog did not violate any Chinese law nor is there any law or regulation which compels MSN to take down his blog. You can prove me wrong by quoting which law or regulation compelled MSN to remove the blog.

    People in the Chinese blogging community are very knowledgable about what the rules are and what they can get away with and what they can’t.

    What has everyone upset is that as far as anyone is aware of, Michael Anti did not violate any rule imposed by the Chinese goverment yet his blog got taken down. He is currently still in China, blogging quite openly on other sites.

  16. I’m sorry that “we are just following the law” argument is nonsense.

    Michael Anti’s blog did not violate any Chinese law nor is there any law or regulation which compels MSN to take down his blog. You can prove me wrong by quoting which law or regulation compelled MSN to remove the blog.

    People in the Chinese blogging community are very knowledgable about what the rules are and what they can get away with and what they can’t.

    What has everyone upset is that as far as anyone is aware of, Michael Anti did not violate any rule imposed by the Chinese goverment yet his blog got taken down. He is currently still in China, blogging quite openly on other sites.

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