Monday afternoon, Google announced on their blog that they have moved their China-based search efforts to servers based in Hong Kong and have removed all censorship filters. Visitors from China to Google.cn will now be treated to unfiltered, open search.
The move is in retaliation for both hack attempts on Google’s server facilities and core services in China, allegedly by Chinese government sources, and for the Chinese government’s snubbing their nose at Google’s claim to be following the law and being attacked for it anyway. To counter this apparent open-season on U.S. companies by the Chinese government, Google is no longer following China’s laws regarding Internet censorship and is now turning the firehose of open ‘Net searching onto teh Chinese people.
At least until the Chinese government blocks Google.cn entirely.
So Google.cn now redirects to Google.hk (Hong Kong). So far, the Chinese government has stuck with it’s “indignation” pose treating the whole affair as if Google is a stubborn step-child that won’t behave. In an official announcement via the state-run news agency Xiahua:
“Google has violated its written promise it made when entering the Chinese market by stopping filtering its searching service and blaming China in insinuation for alleged hacker attacks.”
Meanwhile, in a further move against China, Business Insider notes that Google now has an “Evil Meter” on their site which shows what the Chinese government is blocking so far. It’s labeled a service availability notice for Chinese surfers, but it’s been dubbed the Evil Meter by others.
Expect that Evil Meter to be all red Xs by this afternoon.