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Eric Schmidt: The Great Firewall of China will fall

     
6:24 am on Jul 10, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Eric Schmidt: The Great Firewall of China will fall [thecable.foreignpolicy.com]

"I believe that ultimately censorship fails," said Schmidt, when asked about whether the Chinese government's censorship of the Internet can be sustained. "China's the only government that's engaged in active, dynamic censorship. They're not shy about it."

When the Chinese Internet censorship regime fails, the penetration of information throughout China will also cause political and social liberalization that will fundamentally change the nature of the Chinese government's relationship to its citizenry, Schmidt believes.

"I personally believe that you cannot build a modern knowledge society with that kind of behavior, that is my opinion," he said. "I think most people at Google would agree with that. The natural next question is when [will China change], and no one knows the answer to that question. [But] in a long enough time period, do I think that this kind of regime approach will end? I think absolutely."


Could the Chinese government stay in power in China without their current levels of control?
7:55 am on July 10, 2012 (gmt 0)

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This is a no-lose prediction. Either {insert name of absolutely any institution of any kind} ends before the earth gets hit by an asteroid and is blown to smithereens ... or it doesn't. And if it doesn't, nobody will be around to sneer that it didn't end.
1:49 pm on July 10, 2012 (gmt 0)

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It can't last forever. I am quite interested to watch how this plays out - not the least of which because I have a site in China and have to play by government rules - which are hard to get clarity on.
2:50 pm on July 10, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Nothing lasts forever. Yawn. The only interesting thing about this statement is it further ruins the relationship between China and Google.
3:03 pm on July 10, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I hate to say it, but it makes me wonder if Google's real interest is in the actual censorship of information, or the fact that it's not part of the profit machine as the main source of information, like it is in the rest of the world.
2:02 am on July 11, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I find it interesting that while China slowly opens up to the outside world in terms of what is allowed to their populace via the Internet, at the same time we see Western democracies rushing toward more China-like control of the Internet in their own countries. The insanity over copyright protections is just one example.