Let's hear it for hypocrites!
Google, Microsoft and Yahoo! are the big-name signatories to the recently-formed Global Network Initiative, a body whose members will "collaborate in the advancement of user rights to freedom of expression and privacy."
Is this the same Google that works with the Chinese government to filter the search results of nasty words like "democracy" and "Tiananmen Square"? Surely not.
Could this be the Microsoft that blocked the blog of a prominent Chinese media researcher after he posted articles critical of the Beijing News Daily? I must be thinking of another company.
And it surely must have been another Yahoo! that ratted on reporter Shi Tao, meaning he now gets to spend 10 years in prison for leaking a document about possible Tiananmen Square protests.
And don't even mention privacy!
Here's how Privacy International ranked these guys in their 2007 Privacy Ranking of Internet Service Companies, (subtitled "A Race to the Bottom");
- Yahoo!: "Substantial Threat"
- Microsoft: "Serious Lapses" (with extra marks for Windows Live Space: "Substantial Threat")
- Google: "Hostile to Privacy"
The only thing more chilling than these guys telling the world about how to protect privacy is reading their Terms and Conditions!