Network Effects? [7:52 am]
A French media watchdog said Tuesday that information provided by Internet powerhouse Yahoo Inc. helped Chinese authorities convict and jail a journalist who had written an e-mail about press restrictions.
The criticism from Reporters Without Borders marks the latest instance in which a prominent high-tech company has faced accusations of cooperating with Chinese authorities to gain favor in a country that’s expected to become an Internet gold mine.
IMAGINE WHAT would have happened if during the 1980s an American communications company had provided information that allowed the South African government to track down and imprison an anti-apartheid activist. That is pretty much the moral equivalent of what Yahoo has just done in China in the case of journalist Shi Tao. And the California-based Web giant deserves the same kind of public opprobrium that would have fallen on any Western firm that dared to publicly cooperate with the enforcers of apartheid.