In a further step in the direction of transcending all world government, Google has decided to post a Transparency Report, or a map of where its services are blocked in different foreign countries, in an effort to discourage “censorship.”
For those of you that haven’t been following along, Google has had some governmental run-ins lately. Most recently in the news were the several hundreds of thousands of people who opted out of Google Streetview in Germany. A closer look at the Germany situation would have made it more clear that movements to restrict privacy in this case were actually a win for Google, as the German government came to the conclusion that yeah it’d be great if Google would volunteer to protect data, but the company was not actually party to any governmental regulation.
From the Google blog:
“When Google’s services are blocked or filtered, we can’t serve our users effectively. That’s why we act every day to maximize free expression and access to information. To promote transparency around this flow of information, we’ve built an interactive online Transparency Report with tools that allow people to see where governments are demanding that we remove content and where Google services are being blocked. We believe that this kind of transparency can be a deterrent to censorship.”