"Google to leave China April 10: State Media - 19 March Friday AFP
The Chinese Business News said that Google would go through with a threatened withdrawal from China on 14 April 2010.
Google has cried foul over what it said were cyberattacks aimed at its source code and the Gmail accounts of Chinese human rights activists.
The issue has exacerbated mounting tensions between China and the United States over a range of trade and diplomatic issues.
The company has continued to filter google.cn results to abide by Chinese censorship demands, but says it will eventually stop the screening."
I commented on Google's fight with the Chinese authority and the then ill-conceived threat of pulling out from one of its biggest market with 30% market share, and even bigger market in the future, a few weeks back when it surfaced initially. I was not convinced that Google will carry out it's threat then and if surprised to read of this latest development.
If this is true, the lessons I learn are:
1. the founders are really idealists who put their money where their principles lied! I salute that courage and dedication. It is very very rare to see businessmen foregoing their interests for the values they supposedly stood on;
2. the negative impact to the share price of the company will be severe and hopefully they had their worst case scenario set out and that it won't be breached. Otherwise, it may present another complication in that the company need to stand strong financially in order to continue this fight to spread the values it subscribed to: No evil!;
3. to follow up on the ACTUAL impact over the next 4-week to assess what the targeted consumers will react to this news. If it attracts strong support from its users, it may really be a breakthrough and a demonstration to the Chinese authority that Google's principles are right and that information on the net simply must be allowed to go through uncensored, at least for political means! Protection of the innocents and young, to me, should still be protected as they may not be in a position to properly assess if the information are healthy or not.
I await with anticipation on the actual impact to Google, to the perception of the general public on if this 'stand by the principles' approach is effective or not, etc...