Beijing to Google’s China Partners: Nice Site You Got There. Shame if Something Happened to It.
If Google makes good on its threat to end censorship on its Chinese site, Google.cn, its search partnerships in the country will likely be forfeited–the Chinese government is making certain of that. An unnamed “industry expert” tells the New York Times that Beijing has been warning Chinese Web portals that rely on Google’s Custom Search service they had better reconsider their affiliation with the search giant.
Among the sites allegedly approached: Infotainment portal Sina.com and lifestyle site Ganji.com, which feature Google’s search box on their homepages. Both are now presumably mulling alternatives like Baidu, China’s largest search engine and one that happily censors its results according to Chinese government regulations.
News of Beijing’s latest moves comes amid reports that Google (GOOG) is on the brink of shuttering Google.cn. On Friday, the Financial Times reported that Google is “99.9 percent” certain it will close its Chinese-language search service.
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