Free speech, privacy, Yahoo, China etc.
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Thread: Free speech, privacy, Yahoo, China etc.

  1. #1
    AO Curmudgeon rcgreen's Avatar
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    Free speech, privacy, Yahoo, China etc.

    A Chinese couple sued Yahoo and its Chinese affiliates on Wednesday, alleging the Internet firms provided information that helped the Chinese government prosecute the man for his Internet writings.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/inter...22649120070419




    How responsible is Yahoo to preserve privacy of internet users?

    How much cooperation do they owe to government?
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  2. #2
    Just a Virtualized Geek MrLinus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcgreen
    http://www.reuters.com/article/inter...22649120070419




    How responsible is Yahoo to preserve privacy of internet users?

    How much cooperation do they owe to government?
    Thing is: if it's written in law that they must do monitoring, etc. then Yahoo is not left with too much of an option. They are obeying the law as it stands in the country that the service is being used in. And it's very well known how much the Chinese gov't monitors internet usage.

    It's kinda of hard to force, IMO, to be responsible for the laws of a nation that they are respecting overseas and sue them in the home nation when these are not citizens or residents of the home nation. Yahoo can certainly push the US Gov't to take a stronger stance against the Chinese restrictions but that's about it.
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    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    rcgreen,

    That link seems to have been superceeded

    There is a fair bit of information here:

    http://www.humanrightsusa.org/

  4. #4
    Senior Member alakhiyar's Avatar
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    How responsible is Yahoo to preserve privacy of internet users?
    As responsible as their privacy policy says they are. You did read it before you handed over your personal info, right?


    How much cooperation do they owe to government?
    Whatever is legally required, plus anything extra they've notified users of in their privacy policy.

    In some places you might be surprised how much that is. Existing logs from an ISP here can be requested by police with very little process -- they just need a senior enough officer to sign a prescribed form and that's it; no court involvement required. Only active communications interception or additional logging requires a warrant.
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    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    I think that the issue here is that Yahoo is an American company?

    American companies are also answerable to American law for their actions regarding human rights in foreign countries.

  6. #6
    Just a Virtualized Geek MrLinus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nihil
    I think that the issue here is that Yahoo is an American company?

    American companies are also answerable to American law for their actions regarding human rights in foreign countries.
    Really? So the laws of other nations don't matter? Curious. Which law is this?
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    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    Hi,

    The Alien Tort Claims Act (1789)

    The Torture Victims Protection Act (c. 1992?)

    They are US laws for US people. If other countries' laws are contrary to them then US people shouldn't do business there.

  8. #8
    Just a Virtualized Geek MrLinus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nihil
    Hi,

    The Alien Tort Claims Act (1789)

    The Torture Victims Protection Act (c. 1992?)

    They are US laws for US people. If other countries' laws are contrary to them then US people shouldn't do business there.
    Right. But Yahoo in China isn't American. It's a Chinese subsidary IIRC? And those suing Yahoo are Chinese citizens I thought.
    Last edited by MrLinus; April 21st, 2007 at 08:18 PM.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
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    You are responsible for the actions of your subsidiaries I believe? hey I am no expert on US law, it is pretty different from ours

    I think that the mainland China operation is now only an "associate" of Yahoo, so presumably wouldn't qualify? but it was sold/transferred after these alleged infringements took place, I believe.

    EDIT: Yes, 2005. Link is here:

    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/20...nt_3687238.htm
    Last edited by nihil; April 21st, 2007 at 08:24 PM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member alakhiyar's Avatar
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    ISPs don't promise privacy, and in all fairness, they can't. If they refused to work with China, China would just block them, and they'd loose access to millions of users. No company is going to stand up to a major world government - and certainly not for free.
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