Google Services Blocked by Chinese Authorities
As of last Saturday, all access to Google services such as Gmail, Google.com and the Android OS market in China have been blocked by the Chinese Government. This summer Google has been the target of widespread attacks (slow-downs and hack attacks) allegedly targeting those that reside in China.
Scams, slow-downs and hacks are nothing new when it comes to email – that’s why every email provider has a pre-installed spam folder for all new accounts. A few simple viruses and slow-downs here and there alone wouldn’t be enough reason to block Google’s services. If it were, Hotmail would’ve been blocked in multiple countries a long time ago.
There is, however, another factor that plays a major role in this whole fiasco. This weekend, the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond TuTu had a face-to-face birthday meeting which Chinese authorities were strongly opposed to. The birthday meeting didn’t happen face-to-face though; instead, the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Tutu used Google Plus’ Hangout service, the virtual equivalent to a face-to-face meeting. Chinese officials could’ve taken this as a slap in the face, in which case this would be the retaliation.
Politics aside, smart phones play a pivotal role in today’s business society – whether it’s sending an email, doing some work, or killing time playing a game. Could you imagine using an Android device and waking up on Monday not being able to send/check your emails nor being able to access Google.com and the Android app market? Now imagine a whole country. Whatever the Chinese authorities reasons (or lack thereof) are, it doesn’t seem beneficial to the Chinese society given how many individuals use Google services day-to-day whether its business related or personal. Personally, if I were running Google this would be the point of time where I’d be pulling out my hair in frustration.
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