Google Vs China, Strategy or Real Concerns?

It seems that like the last year went, Google still keeping itself well in news.

| Got to read one tweet @ claymillThe Google /China incident feels ominously profound; it’s an ending and a beginning but nobody knows exactly what ended or began.” |


Google; A name always found in support of Open Internet and even recently made a precise statement over definition of Open and has a philosophy that believe that “open systems win”. They lead to more innovation, value, and freedom of choice for consumers, and a vibrant, profitable, and competitive ecosystem for businesses. china

China; A nation, who leads in methods of censorship. Internet censorship in China is conducted under a wide variety of laws and administrative regulations. In accordance with these laws, more than sixty Internet regulations have been made by the People’s Republic of China (PRC) government, and censorship systems are vigorously implemented by provincial branches of state-owned ISPs, business companies, and organizations.

Internet Censorship and Google: The History

google-chinaFor the first time, Google found to have started to censor its search results in 2002 in compliance with United States’ DMCA legislation. Although even in that time, this move was taken in innovative ways as banned results were replaced by corresponding DMCA complaint. Later on the similar phenomenon was noticed with other countries like United Kingdom (Since September 2006), Germany & France (Since October 2002) and most importantly with China (Since December 2005) in adherence with their corresponding country policies.

With China, Google’s journey been with troubles since the beginning due to huge difference in philosophy. In fact, there was a time when popular search engines such as Altavista, Yahoo!, and Google were completely banned from use in China, although later the ban was lifted, but filtering remained continued.

Google officially announced its adherence with China’s policy in January 2006 and launched a Chinese-language service that will be stripped of content deemed offensive or subversive. Google somehow managed to devise an interesting solution (must read link) for this technically big problem. Later on other Internet giants including Yahoo and Microsoft’s MSN have also censored material "in exchange" for being allowed to tap a market comprising 110 million Internet users, the world’s second-largest market.

An Example of Censorship could be cited as below:



Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch strongly condemned Google’s compliance with China’s Golden Shield Project, calling it a form of self-censorship. According to Amnesty,

“ These forms of censorships seem to contradict the very principles that Google — whose unofficial motto is "don’t be evil" — was founded upon. Until January 2006, Google’s Support Center claimed that it "does not censor results for any search term", but removed this claim after reaching its deal with China. ”

By 12th January 2010, Google finally decided to stand against China’s Censorship

The sensational news was uncovered by Google itself by their blog post on 12th January 2010, in which they wrote that they faced a sophisticated attack in mid Dec 2009, where the hackers targeted Google’s corporate infrastructure originating from China that resulted in the theft of intellectual property from Google. Google claimed that a primary goal of the attackers was accessing the Gmail accounts of Chinese human rights activists.

Google said

We launched in January 2006 in the belief that the benefits of increased access to information for people in China and a more open Internet outweighed our discomfort in agreeing to censor some results. At the time we made clear that "we will carefully monitor conditions in China, including new laws and other restrictions on our services. If we determine that we are unable to achieve the objectives outlined we will not hesitate to reconsider our approach to China."

These attacks and the surveillance they have uncovered–combined with the attempts over the past year to further limit free speech on the web–have led us to conclude that we should review the feasibility of our business operations in China. We have decided we are no longer willing to continue censoring our results on, and so over the next few weeks we will be discussing with the Chinese government the basis on which we could operate an unfiltered search engine within the law, if at all. We recognize that this may well mean having to shut down, and potentially our offices in China.

After attacks over RockYou and Twitter, this was a news which would have caused a stir among people for security concerns of cloud with headlines like “Now even Google got compromised”, like one tweet @vicsingh said “google has balls for potential china pullout, but the positive externality is that no one is talking about the vulnerability of their cloud”, but the matter went much more twisted and interesting as Google shared this information with the world saying …

“We have taken the unusual step of sharing information about these attacks with a broad audience not just because of the security and human rights implications of what we have unearthed, but also because this information goes to the heart of a much bigger global debate about freedom of speech.”

BoyThinking More interesting were their next two decisions;

  1. One was a somewhat not that noticed move by Google after around 6 hours of their blog post about attacks, where they made their Gmail and other services using https access by default.
  2. The other one came with the same blog post itself saying “We have decided we are no longer willing to continue censoring our results on”

Why Google suddenly became ready to even leave China?


As per information revealed by Google itself, the attack was mere phishing attacks “These accounts have not been accessed through any security breach at Google, but most likely via phishing scams or malware placed on the users’ computers.

Now, the million dollars question to be asked is, such attacks been common to whole community of internet users and all leading companies since decades and Google itself said (if true) that only two of the accounts were compromised up to an extent (not even completely) then what became the reason of this huge decision, which could impact many things all around the globe in many ways?

questionIts true that for years, Google faced withering criticism for what activists and lawmakers said was a willingness to abandon social responsibility in return for greater wealth. Its true that Google co-founder Sergey Brin shared many of the critics’ concerns about Google’s presence in China (but he publicly maintained that even a censored version of the company’s search engine was better than none at all). Its also true that recent move invited world wide praises for Google.

But still it will be a question to ask that why now after four years? Is the biggest market (around 20% of whole world) became less lucrative suddenly for which many compromises were made? Is performance troubles due to excessive filtering seems to nail down Google’s cloud strategies?

Note that even now  Google is filtering its search results and its operation in China is under a review as per Google itself, not opted out. Google officials said that they will be discussing with the Chinese government the basis on which they could operate an unfiltered search engine within the law, if at all. So, wait and watch.

This link sites Testimony of Google Inc. about China from their blog post in 2006. Have a read. I would also like to invite you all to comment upon what you think about this news.


LinkedIn now with Faceted Search

Look like Recession really has plugged in some great innovations back on track. Scared from apparent downfall of Facebook and MySpace, almost all the social media sites are on revamping of their interface and features. Here is the another update from LinkedIn: The Giant Business Networking Site.


“ Dec 14, 2009, Esteban Kozak from LinkedIn announced the release of another huge improvement to LinkedIn’s people search experience, “Faceted Search”. “Faceted Search” offers dynamic filters that are automatically generated based on your actual query results. These filters let you quickly and easily hone your query over 50 million LinkedIn profiles based on 8 facets: current company, past company, location, relationship, location, industry, school, and profile languages. ”

The concept is based on the fact over what all the network sites were once based upon. “Finding the people, what you exactly wanted to find”, thus improving the technique of searching people faster and efficiently.

Now, how this “Faceted Search” works: As you search for something or someone, this technique automatically generates search filters, based on your query results, which lets you quickly refine your search. Check out the snapshot attached below, find the all new “Refine By” module there. This is what we are talking about.


Currently these filters are based on 8 facets: Current Company, Past Company, Location, Relationship, Industry, School, Groups and profile languages.

“ In practice, it really makes your search queries more efficient like you need to search for an engineer in NCR (Location), has great interest in .Net technologies (Groups), who speaks english and hindi (Profile Language), have working/ worked for TCS (Current/ Past Company) and either in my friend list or in friend’s friend list (relationship). As the LinkedIn implementation is, the search results adapt the filter quickly and thus makes the entire process quick and effortless. ”

As their blog says:

Faceted Search offers the following benefits to your search experience on LinkedIn:

  • Enables True Guided Navigation: A list of filters are generated dynamically for every search in order to guide you through the optimal path to find the most relevant people
  • Provides Intuitive Interface: Refining your search is easier than ever with an intuitive user interface that allows you to slice and dice search results by 8 facets
  • Improves Precision: As LinkedIn continues to grow by the millions, increasing search space requires increased precision to help you find exactly the right people
  • Increases Efficiency: Find talent, business partners, customers or a former colleague faster than ever before.
  • Reduces Need for Complex Queries: It significantly reduces the need for complex Boolean queries. This was a particular need we heard from many of our power users.

Here is the official video of the same feature :—>

While this is going to make work smoother for people, who were taking help of LinkedIn Connections for their businesses, here I am just wondering on the basis of Google’s Launch of Goggles that when this limited feature to Android only, will be released to other platforms as well and we will have capability of searching someone by his/ her face only in Google Search or Orkut search (already picasa started name tags). Its pretty possible technology and its very about time, when Google must have launched the same. Waiting for that. 🙂

Till then you enjoy video about Google’s Goggles.

Missed deal hints new plans-Google for music

google-audio-music-logo“ It seems that the Cloud technology opening its wings one by one, Google’s try to acquire one silicon valley startup La La Media Inc. even after loosing the turf to Apple kind of made a clear announcement in a way, that what might be the next milestone for Google: A Full fledge service like Google Books to cater music only for free (running over ads). ”

It might be one of the good guess only, but Google has already launched such a service in China with partnering with to offer legal MP3 streaming/ download with a large MP3 collection and this shows that its very likely that after getting right deals (like it got in case of Google books with various publishers), Google might move into music as well like iTune.

If you think that what one uses while using computers, except internet, chatting and searching web, then its editing photos, documents, presentations, watching movies and hearing music etc. Google had already covered many of the points like Picasa for Photos, Google Docs for Documents/ Presentations and YouTube for watching media. What just remains is Music.

Although there is a YouTube category for music videos, a very limited music search engine, an online music player and a media server for Google Desktop, but currently Google doesn’t has any full-fledged music related service product.

With Google Chrome, Google wants to start an era, where your every need will be online and will go along with you, no matter where you are or what you are using for your connection, your desktop, your docs, your bookmarks, your web history, your videos, your books and everything else will follow you.

So before the launch of Google Chrome OS, we could sure expect Google to fill up this gap by acquiring some company in similar domain and in next probably its gonna to be Google online games service. Sure, due to copyrights, its not gonna to be as open and simple like Picasa webs but you may sure hope for products having capabilities like Google Books (limited preview/ full).

What’s your opinion? please write to me.

Google making its search result Real-time now

“ In today’s running world, many a times, the delay in reaching to the information by a fraction of minutes could cause you loose the gears. After Bing and Google both partnered with Twitter and Facebook, the world was waiting for the concept of real time search to appear in ‘real’ and here Google finally joining the race again (with in-depth preparations), by moving into real time search while Bing was already started with it by Twitter Searches since July 01, 2009. ”

googlelogo_thumb1 bing-logo

As the phenomenon of Twitter risen up, it given strength to concept of real time information search. In early days, any news before getting pitched up in print or television media was hitting the web first via blogs with sometimes more details than other media, but even then there was a delay of hours/ days in getting the information live. Now, the birth of Twitter changed the scenario and now days, whatever happens around the globe, first hits Twitter, Facebook and Orkut updates first then anything else and people were looking for information there than any of news results or blogs.

The real time information search for headlines is moving towards Twitter, Facebook and Orkut updates now days and it’s been inviting the searching giant to move into the race sooner or later. Microsoft became the first to hit the chord by Partnering with Twitter and Facebook by Oct 22, 2009, while Google announced on Dec 07, 2009 its collaboration with Facebook, MySpace, FriendFeed, Jaiku, and most importantly with Twitter.

So, you might be getting the idea that what the real time search is; its the concept of searching for and finding information online as it is produced or in other words it’s the advancements in web search technology coupled with growing use of social media enabled online activities to be queried as they occur.

Let us know that how to use it:

Google’s Real Time Search

For reaching to Google’s Real Time Search, You have to go to normal Google Search, after searching some query press Show Options button (its there at left top of the search results) and then press latest as shown in image given below. You could see results are coming up with time given next to them in seconds, minutes. 🙂


Note that as per Google’s usual practice in past, this feature is release as a beta feature only and suggestions are always invited to make more improvements in it.

Bing’s Real Time Search

For search through Bing, you need to go on and then you could make your search within Twitter, while I am not able to figure out yet that how its working with Facebook.

bing real time search

Now, there are reasons that why Google Real Time Search is better than Microsoft’s Bing (courtesy CRN) and even if its declared as war between the two, many of us already have declared Google a Winner.

“ Not only Google has a much better and proven search technology than Bing could have, but also Google has designed its search results more better in visuals than Bing and as a final reason, you can see that sure Microsoft hit the chord first by integrating with Facebook and Twitter, but it couldn’t match the breadth and depth Google’s real time search is going to provide by partnering with wide and diverse range of Social Network Sites. ”

So, finally we sure has many reasons to look forward that how much more innovation is about to come from this rivalry between Microsoft and Google.