Deal With The Devil?

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San Francisco Chronicle, not a newspaper that is a must read for me has a pretty stirring story about the moral issues facing US technology when doing business with China. The article looks at the issue of censorship, and how companies like Yahoo, Microsoft, Cisco and others are simply falling in with the “party line” in the name of business. Make that, future perceived business. The argument Google and Yahoo make that they are simply obeying the Chinese Laws. To this, Julien Pain, head of the Internet Freedom Desk at Reporters Without Borders says, “If the Chinese custom is to make children work or to kill women, you wouldn’t do it.” Enough said! I know double standards are part of doing business, but so is idealism, at least in Silicon Valley.

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Jesse Kopelman

On the other hand, refusing (or more correctly being forced not) to do business with Cuba and North Korea has not done much to improve human rights issues in those countries.

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