Antony defends Chinese censorship

17 Mar

Antony of AntBlog701 has, I think, a curious attitude to Chinese government censorship and human rights abuses. Essentially he thinks the Chinese government acts within its rights when it does a Mugabe on such matters and tells the rest of the world to “go hang”. See Wang Xiaoning arrested, wife sues Yahoo! Antony says:

She wants to hold Yahoo! accountable. For what? According to her and court document, Yahoo! handed information to Chinese government. Wait a sec? Yahoo! was required to follow the laws of countries. Associated professor of international law at Stanford University Allen Weiner said nicely,
“The normal rule is that when you’re doing business in a foreign country, you’re obligated to comply with the law.”

It is clear to me that Yu’s husband (Wang) knew what he posted over internet was not allowed in China. He might not know that everything can be traced over the internet, or thought that internet is the heaven for conducting something illegal, too bad. Yu said Yahoo! “deprived” her husband of freedom. What a ridiculous claim. Okay, “deprived” was a translated word, but still ridiculous. Her husband, as a Chinese citizen, does not have much freedom to begin with. Also, what her husband posted is likely to against China’s national policy.

Well done Yahoo! on complying local laws.

If Mr Wang Xiaoning succeed on changing China’s politics, he would be a hero. The current situation says he failed, and he is now a traitor, and won’t be a martyr.

Antony, if I recall correctly, is of Taiwanese background, so his view would not automatically be pro-PRC.

Yes, businesses have to comply with local laws. On the other hand, is it “treason” for a Chinese citizen to advocate change which may in the long term be for the good of his country? What do you think of Antony’s interpretation of this case?

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3 responses to “Antony defends Chinese censorship

  1. Antony Shen

    March 17, 2007 at 10:41 am

    I think Antony pointed out correctly. (Okay, I am Antony.)

    The story was simple, Wang Xiaoning was arrested for articles he shouldn’t have posted or edited. It does not matter where Wang posted. And why was that Yahoo!’s fault? Yahoo! was required to comply with government, especially on national interests. Yu wants to sue Yahoo! for providing a venue (then was required to co-operate with government)? What else could Yahoo! have done? Shutting down the service? Even if Yahoo! shuts down the service, it is likely that Wang would continue posting elsewhere, and would be arrested sooner or later.

    It’s just like suing fast food companies for your health. Fast food restaurants do not force anyone to eat there, and Yahoo! certainly did not beg Wang to post his anti-government view in Yahoo! Group.

  2. Lexcen

    March 17, 2007 at 10:44 am

    Anything can be construed as “going against China’s national policy”. It’s good to see that Stalinist semantics is still alive.

  3. AV

    March 17, 2007 at 2:39 pm

    “The normal rule is that when you’re doing business in a foreign country, you’re obligated to comply with the law.”

    That sounds awfully like a Nuremberg defence to me. AWB’s defence of its dodgy dealings with Saddam Hussein’s regime also springs to mind.

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